A film by Frederick Wiseman
Monrovia, Indiana, Frederick Wiseman, EUA, 2018, 143'
We screened this film in Tabakalera on the day of the general election. In Monrovia, a small town in Indiana, more than 97% of the population is white. The US presidential election revealed that more than 65% of the inhabitants of this Deep South town supported Donald Trump. What is day-to-day life like in the town? What values prevail in this conservative population which is completely isolated from the social and cultural movements of big cities?
The documentarian Frederick Wiseman returns to our screens with one of his accurate portraits of the reality in his country. As he has shown us over the course of his 50+ year career, the point is to observe: a wedding, a burial, various meetings of the town committee, trips to markets, gun trade, flags raised on the quiet porches of family houses... Little by little, an image forms of the classic America which abides by the “order” of the pioneers: rural life, community, duty, spiritual life, authentic values, family... But this is a Wiseman film, and we can’t forget it. Alongside this idyllic and tranquil image is a complex portrait in which fear of progress (dominated by ignorance, machismo and manipulation) explains what lies behind the ascension of certain politicians to power. Let the scrutiny begin.