What Is 'Michael Moore In Trumpland' About? The Movie Is Not What You'd Expect
When you heard that documentary filmmaker Michael Moore had a new movie out and that it had "Trumpland" in the title, you probably expected something fiery and hard-hitting, a critique the likes of which you'd never seen before. What Michael Moore in Trumpland is about, though, will probably surprise you. Instead of an extended series of shots at the Republican presidential nominee, Moore has put together a little something different this time: an impassioned case for Hillary Clinton, and a call for national unity.
The film was mostly shot on October 7, when Moore gave a show in a deeply red town in Ohio. He wanted to draw in as many Donald Trump supporters as possible, he noted, but not so that he could berate them with insults about their candidate of choice. He does make a few jokes about the differences between liberals and conservatives and the first day of a potential Trump presidency, but that isn't the point of the movie.
It may be unexpected coming from an out-and-out liberal like Moore, but his aim was to reach out to the Trump supporters in his audience, acknowledge their concerns, and even offer a defense of them as people who aren't finding their needs met with the way government is functioning now.
Moore has often approached his favored issues with anger, as audiences have seen in several of his previous films, like Fahrenheit 9/11 and the Oscar-winning Bowling for Columbine . However, with Trumpland, he seems to recognize that merely attacking the people who don't want to vote for Hillary Clinton won't convince them to listen to him. Instead of taking that approach, he addresses all of the undecided voters and "Never Clinton" voters who might still be swayed, whether they're disillusioned Bernie Sanders supporters (Moore himself supported Sanders in the primaries) or people who would generally lean right of center but now find themselves put off by Trump.
By recounting Clinton's lesser-known achievements and letting the audience air their doubts about her, Moore builds a portrait of her not as an ideal candidate, but as a candidate who is ideally suited to address the problems plaguing the country. Her background, he argues, has parallels to that of Pope Francis, who was never actively progressive until he assumed the papacy. According to Moore, Clinton's deep-seated liberalism will finally have a chance to unleash itself when she becomes the president. More than that, though, the film is a refreshing chance to hear an argument actively for Clinton instead of just against Trump.
It's manifestly clear that Moore has spent his entire career trying to save America. His deep care for his country is undeniable, despite what some of his detractors on the right might say about him. This election, like many other things in the past, has him very worried — and Michael Moore in Trumpland is his last-minute, fervent attempt to make sure that the country stays on what he sees as the right path.