Alexa

Oscar-winner shines light on U.S. politics

Oscar-winner shines light on U.S. politics

After tackling the collapse of Enron and the torture of detainees in Afghanistan, film-maker Alex Gibney is shining a light on corruption in U.S. politics in his latest film.
Gibney, who won an Oscar in 2008 for his account of how an Afghan taxi driver died in U.S. custody in the documentary "Taxi to the Dark Side," has now turned his camera on the life and crimes of jailed lobbyist Jack Abramoff.
The documentary - "Casino Jack and the United States of Money" - is vying for honors at the Sundance Film Festival, where it is screening in competition.
Abramoff was a top Washington lobbyist during the Republican rise to power in Congress in the 1990s, and expanded his influence with George W. Bush's election to the White House in 2000.
He was jailed for nearly six years in 2006 after admitting corruption, fraud and tax evasion charges, and according to Gibney is emblematic of the new breed of "political terrorism" which perverts government.
"In many ways Abramoff is both deadly serious and deeply ridiculous," Gibney told reporter. "And some of these things were just too outrageous and funny to be treated in any kind of a sober way. You had to laugh and cry at the same time.
"I like to say that it's a comedy, but the joke is on us."
Gibney said he hoped his film would open the eyes of Americans to the world of political financing.
"When you go behind the scenes in a sausage factory, it's pretty scary," he said. "This film takes you back into the kitchen and it's not so pretty."
"In which other country in the world, except countries deeply corrupt like Indonesia or Nigeria, is money so openly displayed to buy and sell political leaders? It's just shocking," Gibney said.


Updated : 2021-03-06 10:38 GMT+08:00