Buzz News Chicago: Theatre and Concert Reviews

Thursday, 17 May 2012 21:24

“Bailout” World Premiere at Music Box Theater - Courageous and Eye Opening Featured

Written by Paul Black


Superbly directed by Sean Fahey, “Bailout” is a powerful film that takes a look at the housing disaster that has taken place across America in recent years, the events leading up to the crash and the corruption that exists behind the scenes. “Bailout” takes its audience across the country, along with five colorful friends in a Winnebago, for a firsthand look on how this recent financial crisis has affected homeowners, particularly the lower and middle class.


Make no mistake about it as Fahey uses the word “fraud” many times throughout the film when referring to the actions of the big money-center banks, clearly painting the picture that criminal intent – not miscalculation or mistake - was indeed the source of the housing collapse. Fahey brilliantly connects the dots using facts, expert analysis and heartbreaking testimonials from victims throughout the country as the concrete evidence needed to support the film’s claim of wrong doing. The film also touches on the fact that no one was convicted for the largest financial fraud ($11 billion) in our country’s history. Why? Because banks have successfully infiltrated the government and routinely pass the laws that protect themselves from offense. The atrocities don’t stop there as the film delves into the misguided bailouts that the banks – the perpetrators – have issued, keeping the machine alive and well. The film also provides a detailed look at the process in which banks handed out home loans knowing, and benefiting, on the fact that these loans could never be repaid. Breaking it down to a science, it is explained how and why this process made these banks profited hand over fist while Americans suffered one of the biggest recessions to date.    


Like many Americans, lead character John Titus has had enough. Dealing with the threat of foreclosure, Titus, an unemployed Chicago lawyer, decides to give himself a bailout. Rather than paying his inflating mortgage, he saves that money, buys a Winnebago and decides to head out West with four of his buddies (also on the brink of foreclosure) to spend, spend, spend and party. Doing what Wall Street does with taxpayers’ money and futures, Titus plans to gamble his ‘bailout”, making their destination Las Vegas. Heading out from Chicago, Titus and gang (including stand up comedian John Fox) take to the highways, making stops in St. Louis, Roswell and many other cities. During their road trip the self-appointed “Dukes of Moral Hazard” speak with people from all walks of life, many of whom have suffered home foreclosures. The five traveling friends are entertaining to watch throughout and each can be identified with in their own different way. Fox also does a great job narrating the film. 


“Bailout” should make viewers angry. If it doesn’t, there’s a pretty good chance those unaffected are probably a part of the collective problem, as complacency and ignorance is what the big money-center banks depend on in order to feed their pockets. Following the successful premiere of “Bailout” at the Music Box Theater in Chicago, director, Sean Fahey, and lead, John Titus, spent a good deal of time fielding questions from the audience. Both Fahey and Titus explained the importance of shutting out biased media, educating ourselves and standing together. The two also stressed, as in the film, that this is not a Right/Left issue, this is people versus banks issue – all are affected. 


An important and daring social documentary, “Bailout” conveys a strong message that should be heard by everyone.


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