James Stern in 'American Chaos'  (Photo by Sony Pictures Classics)

James Stern in 'American Chaos' (Photo by Sony Pictures Classics)

Jan Wahl Review: 'American Chaos'

Listen to Jan every Friday at 8:53am & 4:53pm

Jan Wahl
September 14, 2018 - 12:49 pm

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS Radio) - 'American Chaos' attempts to answer "how we got to where we are now, politically in the United States." If you ever asked yourself that question "Why are we in so much trouble?", "Why can't we talk to each other?"

Well whether you are pro or anti the President, this movie will keep you interested. 'American Chaos' takes place right before the 2016 election. Documentary filmmaker James D. Stern takes us to red states to talk with Trump supporters. He's liberal, but he's not arguing or debating these people, he just wants to understand them.

"Something felt very wrong, and I needed to find out why." - the film's tagline.

Stern talks to farmers, coal miners, out of work West Virginians and Floridians. It's a chance for Bay Area people to meet people we don't know. This is one of those documentaries that could be depressing, informative or both. I wish Stern would now do part two with the same people and see if they've changed or if they haven't.

Studio: Sony Pictures Classics
Director: James D. Stern

About The Movie:
Starting six months before the 2016 presidential election, director Jim Stern put his life on hold and — driven to understand what seemed incomprehensible at the time — traveled through red states to interview and spend time with Donald Trump supporters from different backgrounds. It was a search for insights and answers, for anything that could explain the billionaire’s surging appeal and why these voters remained untroubled by so many troubling things the candidate had said and done.

This journey became his Heart of Darkness into the American body politic at a profoundly critical point in our history. And the film he returned with, 'American Chaos', sheds unique light on difficult issues roiling the nation — chronicling a cultural divide, still dangerously misunderstood, that continues to tear at the fabric of our democracy. (SONY PICTURES CLASSICS)


Right now, this is the time to see a couple of classic Hollywood movies that will really help put things in perspective. One is 'All the President's Men' starring Dustin Hoffman and Robert Redford as Watergate investigative reporters Woodward and Bernstein. Also see Burt Lancaster and Kirk Douglas in 'Seven Days in May' about what happens when someone in the government wants to take over the Presidency. It's very, very interesting and it's the kind of movie where you just understand why these people were big stars and it will get your mind off 'American Chaos'.

Other Movies To See: Spike Lee's BlacKkKlansman, Crazy Rich Asians and Pick of The Litter

Listen to Jan Wahl Every Friday at 8:53am & 4:53pm on KCBS Radio