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Movie Review: Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room

Alternate Title: Greed Goeth Before the Fall

Story: This anger inducing, fascinating look at how the corporate debacle known as Enron managed to fool all of the people, all of the time is required watching for anyone interested in recent scandals.

It is based on the book The Smartest Guys in the Room by Fortune reporters Betheny McLean and Peter Elkind. Director and writer Alex Gibney deftly retells the sordid tale so that everyone can understand just what happened and how easily it could happen again. It could be used as a primer in Business 101.

Just how Kenneth Lay, Jeffrey Skilling and Andrew Fastow fast talked and smooth-talked their lawyers, accountants (Arthur Anderson), stock analysts and giant banks to jump on the gravy train is the stuff of horror movies. Everyone wanted a piece of the action. And then they went down - but not before the big wigs took their money and ran and left the little guy scratching his head.

The film is dissected into chapters and is a MUST for anyone who has already forgotten this scathing chapter in American business and the culture of greed.

Acting: As a documentary, this category is moot. But it is fascinating to watch these corporate ass holes do their stuff.

Predilection: I like documentary films.

Soundtrack: A terrific soundtrack that works well (and is often funny) with each chapter.

Theater Audience: It was playing in two theaters and we had a very small crowd. I am sad to say this film will probably have a limited appeal.

Squirm Scale: Watching these guys is very squirmy indeed. After the film I felt as if I needed a shower and not just any type of shower - but more like a Karen Silkwood cleansing.

Drift Factor: Drifting is not recommended. I did not drift at all.

Predictability Level: The only unknown is if those rat bastards will get their due in court.

Oscar Worthy: Sure, why not?

Soap Box: So much to say, so little space. This film depicts American capitalism and greed down the line at its worst. Check out this web site for some fascinating links to the powerful and the connected: http://www.theyrule.net/ "They Rule aims to provide a glimpse of some of the relationships of the US ruling class. It takes as its focus the boards of some of the most powerful U.S. companies, which share many of the same directors. Some individuals sit on 5, 6 or 7 of the top 500 companies. It allows users to browse through these interlocking directories and run searches on the boards and companies. A user can save a map of connections complete with their annotations and email links to these maps to others. They Rule is a starting point for research about these powerful individuals and corporations".

Nit Picking: No nits to pick.

Big Screen or Rental: Big screen and support these bold film makers.

Length: Under two hours.