Maxed Out: Hard Times, Easy Credit and the Era of Predatory Lending (Full Version)

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Written and directed by James Scurlock, the film and book use interviews with creditors, debtors, academics, and others to illustrate its story. The film premiered at the South by Southwest Film Festival in Austin, Texas, USA, in 2006 where it claimed the Special Jury Prize. It went on to several film fests including Seattle, Full Frame Documentary, Maui, New Zealand, Milwaukee International, Woodstock, Bergen, Leeds International, Oxford and IDFA (Amsterdam) film festivals. It was released in movie theaters in select cities in the United States in March 2007 through Magnolia Pictures. The DVD was released nationally in June 7, 2007, in the joint effort Magnolia Pictures and Red Envelope Entertainment .

Scurlock’s purpose for this film and book was to raise awareness of how credit and lending issues are affecting society. The main premises of the documentary and book are that banks and other creditors deliberately market to people who are more likely to have problems paying predatory lending and that the creditors benefit from connections to government, the debt collection industry, and from lawmaker apathy.

The non-profit organization Americans for Fairness in Lending (AFFIL) has organized screenings of Maxed Out around the country as part of its work. AFFIL sustains a formal collaboration with the film.

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Taxi to the Dark Side (Full Version), 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 rating
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Taxi to the Dark Side (Full Version)

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Taxi to the Dark Side is a 2007 documentary film directed by American filmmaker Alex Gibney, and produced by Eva Orner and Susannah Shipman, which won the 2007 Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature. It focuses on the murder of an Afghan taxi driver named Dilawar, beaten to death by American soldiers while being held in extrajudicial detention at the Parwan Detention Facility.

Taxi to the Dark Side examines the USA’s policy on torture and interrogation in general, specifically the CIA’s use of torture and their research into sensory deprivation. The film includes opposition to the use of torture from its political and military opponents, as well as the defense of such methods; attempts by Congress to uphold the standards of the Geneva Convention forbidding torture; and popularization of the use of torture techniques in shows such as 24.

It is part of the Why Democracy? series, which consists of ten documentary films from around the world questioning and examining contemporary democracy. As part of the series, Taxi to the Dark Side was broadcast in over 30 different countries around the world from October 8–18, 2007. The BBC cut the film to 79 minutes for broadcast.

 

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Taxi to the Dark Side (Full Version), 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 rating
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