The Divide (REVIEW)

Ar Pr

'The Divide' documentary seeks to explain the alarming gap between the poor and the wealthy but it piles on too much information in a short period of time

Seven people tell their story of their struggle to survive in a world where the rich get richer and the poor get poorer in the new documentary ‘The Divide.’

The 78-minute documentary weaves these people’s dilemnas into a film that’s tries to tell too many stories while providing too much information in a short period of time. One of the people interviewed is Leah Taylor who works at her local Kentucky Fried Chicken fast food restaurant. She lives from paycheck to paycheck, while another woman is in danger of losing her home because she’s got no money to pay the bills. Then there's Alden Cass, a Wall Street psychologist who is living the dream. He’s got a well-paying job and a beautiful apartment with tremendous views, yet he wants more. Rochelle Monte, a UK careworker, complains that she doesn’t feel respected in her job of choice, and that she deserves more money (who doesn’t)? And Jennifer Cooper complains that no one speaks to her in her upscale gated community, not even in it’s park. Hey, at least her community has it’s own golf course!

‘The Divide’ also touches on the economic booms during the Margaret Thatcher and Bill Clinton years, to Wall Street’s buying, selling and repackaging of debt, which was one of the factors that led to the 2008 economic crisis. And more than ten commentators give their opinion on the divide between the wealthy and the poor, a divide that keeps on getting bigger and bigger. We’re also treated to footage of Lehman Brothers former chairman Richard Fuld having a hard time explaining his $480MM pay check to U.S. Congress. But it’s all too much to take in in a documentary that’s weaving too many personal stories with too many news video clips. It attempts to provide a psychological and tragi-comic picture of the haves and have nots but it would’ve been more effective if it just stuck to one topic, and not several topics.

THE DIVIDE is in UK cinemas from 22 April 2016