2006. USA. Frederick Wiseman. 217 min.
Wednesday, December 15, 2010, 4:00 p.m.
Theater 2 (The Roy and Niuta Titus Theater 2), T2
2006. USA. Directed by Frederick Wiseman. New York Times critic Manohla Dargis writes of State Legislature, “This is democracy in action from the ground up, wholly unheroic and absolutely mesmerizing.” Wiseman spent twelve weeks in 2004 observing an entire session of the Idaho state legislature, which is comprised not of career politicians but of ordinary citizens, including ranchers, doctors, and business leaders. “I discovered that politicians like to talk,” Wiseman wryly noted as he culled three-and-a-half hours from 160 hours of footage. The legislators in the film debate a range of issues, from water policy and mad cow disease to perverts with cell phones and smoking in public places: “I think I came away with a great deal of respect for people who are willing to take the time to participate in the democratic process, as opposed to someone like me who has all sorts of opinions but doesn’t participate.’ 217 min.