Voters are bombarded with repetitive, subjective messages about the candidate's personality and biography
Los Angeles, CA (PRWEB) August 23, 2008
As the national parties' nominating conventions convene in the next weeks in what has become the longest and most expensive presidential election in American history, Joe Barber and Mary Patel's documentary, ELECTILE DYSFUNCTION: INSIDE THE BUSINESS OF AMERICAN CAMPAIGNS, pulls the curtain back on the campaign process revealing the master-minds, the chicanery and the money that have come to define American politics. ELECTILE DYSFUNCTION has been acquired by Cinema Libre Studio, a leader in the distribution of political documentaries, and will street on October 7, 2008 with an SRP of $19.95.
As the public's disapproval of the war in Iraq, the current President and the economy reach an all-time high, cynicism and distrust are the hallmarks of public disenchantment on both sides of the political aisle. The unholy alliance of special interest money and public policy has produced a government that is perceived to be out of touch with the reality of everyday citizens and unresponsive to their needs.
"Elections have changed dramatically over the years; money, power and name recognition are the three basic ingredients for a winner - whether or not that candidate has any qualifications," says co-director Patel. "This is fine for the corporate world or the entertainment industry, but not for democracy." A political columnist with Philadelphia City Paper since 1994, Patel's column is known for its non-partisan perspective.
The documentary was conceived during the bellwether 2006 Senate race between Senator Rick Santorum (R) and Bob Casey (D) in Pennsylvania, which at the time was the most covered race in the country. Surveying a broad cross-section of political operatives, consultants, and celebrities, the film shines a light on the evolution of sound-bite politics and the overt manipulation of the voter. ELECTILE DYSFUNCTION shines the light on the power of the consultants, the "science" behind the messaging, the role of surrogates, the effect of the FCC's deregulation of television airwaves, the complicity of the media and the strategies behind creating provocative ad campaigns, in particular the attack ad.
The film features Barack Obama, John McCain, Joe Biden, Al Gore, Arlen Specter, Christine Todd Whitman, Dennis Kucinich, and journalists Helen Thomas, Jordan Lieberman, Michael Scherer, and Larry Beinhart (media critic and author, "Wag The Dog") as well as celebrity activists, Elliott Gould, Ed Asner and Schoolly D. Perhaps more intriguing are the campaign consultants - Joe Trippi (campaign manager for Howard Dean and consultant for John Edwards), Elliott Curson (media consultant for Ronald Reagan's 1980 primary campaign), and media experts Mark Moskowitz and Neil Oxman of The Campaign Group - who candidly reveal their techniques.
"Voters are bombarded with repetitive, subjective messages about the candidate's personality and biography," says Barber. "The system seems designed to focus their attention on what the candidates look like or who is ahead rather than what they promise they'll do for the country. With an awareness of the techniques campaigns use and how to find better information, people can look beyond what the candidates want them to see and understand the truth about the people who are looking to represent them and how they propose to represent them."
This is the first film for Barber and Patel, both board members of the Philadelphia film society, who came together over their mutual frustration with the current political climate. Barber is an economist and the founder of the Philadelphia area consulting firm, Old City Consulting Group and has worked with numerous campaigns. Patel has been a political columnist for the past 12 years. Her weekly column Political Notebook is a synopsis of topical political news. She has served as a political correspondent for the Democratic and Republican presidential conventions in 1996, 2000 and 2004 and is also a part of a rotating panel on the ABC affiliate political talk show, 'Inside Story.'
For images, trailer and clips visit: http://www.electiledysfunctionfilm.com.
Street Date: 10/7/2008
English, 88 minutes, Not-rated
(catalog #:CLS1057/ UPC#: 881394105720)
Bonus Features: Deleted Scenes, Extended Interviews with Arlen Specter, Joe Trippi, Dan Savage, Helen Thomas and Mark Moskowitz, the Music Video for the theme song "The American" performed by Rodney Whittenberg, and the Trailer
About Cinema Libre Studio
Cinema Libre Studio is a leader in producing and distributing political documentaries and independent feature films. Based in Los Angeles, the company is best known for distributing UNCOVERED: THE WAR ON IRAQ, OUTFOXED, GIULIANI TIME, WMD: WEAPONS OF MASS DECEPTION and many more. The company recently premiered, THE END OF POVERTY?, a feature length documentary that asks why poverty still exists during the Cannes Film Festival. For more information, visit http://www.cinemalibrestudio.com.
Beth Portello/Giedre Miniotaite
Cinema Libre Studio