Hastily Made Michael Moore Movie Misses the Mark

Known for smart, muckraking films such as Roger and Me, Fahrenheit 9/11 and Bowling for Columbine, writer-director Michael Moore tries his hand at standup with his latest endeavor, Michael Moore in TrumpLand.

While Moore has a sharp sense of humor, the movie, more concert film than documentary, doesn’t add anything significant to the debate regarding the current presidential candidates.

The film opens today at the Cedar Lee Theatre.

The movie centers on Moore's speaking engagement at a small theater in Wilmington, Ohio, a city best known for creating the banana split. “[Wilmington] may be located in Clinton county, but it’s not Clinton country,” Moore quips at the start of the film, which he cobbled together in a hurry (the Wilmington event took place just a few weeks ago).

In typical fashion, Moore pokes fan at the conservatives, admitting that he admires their sense of conviction. “Decisive, organized, disciplined – you’ve got to admire that about them,” he says of Republicans. His rambling speech comes off as something you might hear at a high school commencement and includes references to gender stereotypes (“Whatever you’re afraid of does not wear a dress — or a pantsuit”) and Brexit (“You used the ballot as an anger-management tool and now you’re fucked”).

The one-liners come fast and furious here, but Moore delivers few of them with the timing of a seasoned comic. A brief-but-sarcastic fake news report announcing Trump’s victory, a fake Trump campaign ad and footage of Donald Trump praising Hillary Clinton might be the film’s highlights.

Unlike Moore’s best work, the movie doesn’t tell you anything you don’t already know or inspire your inner activist.