The Big Sellout | Chicago Reader

The Big Sellout

Director Florian Opitz shows a good eye for affecting details in this 2006 German documentary on the privatization of government services: a mother struggles to find dialysis for her son in the Philippines; a private water company installs meters that require prepayment, over Soweto residents' protests; British Rail workers display a succession of new uniforms provided by private companies. But the People magazine approach is superficial at best: economist Joseph Stiglitz tells of how privatized monopolies can charge exorbitant prices, but we never learn if the water companies in Bolivia and South Africa actually did that. In English and subtitled German, Spanish, and Tagalog. 94 min.

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