86 minutes – Documentary
Release dates: March 16, 2012 (Toronto and Montreal)
March 23 (Vancouver), March 25 (Victoria)
Production company: National Film Board
Canadian Distributor: Mongrel Media
Margaret Atwood’s visionary work Payback: Debt and the Shadow Side of Wealth is the basis for this riveting and poetic documentary on “debt” in its various forms—societal, personal, environmental, spiritual, criminal, and of course, economic. Filmmaker Jennifer Baichwal strikingly interweaves these (sometimes surprising) debtor/creditor relationships: two families in a years-long Albanian blood feud; the Guld of Mexico oil spill; mistreated Florida tomato farm workers and their bosses; imprisoned media mogul Conrad Black and the U.S. justice system. With stunning cinematography and insightful commentary from renowned thinkers Raj Patel, Louise Arbour and Atwood herself, Payback – a National Film Board Production – is a brilliant, game-changing rumination on the subject.
Also see: Jennifer Baichwal talks about the making of Payback.