New World Order Review

New World Order

Finally! A film that takes the focus off of the conspiracy theories and re-trains it on the most interesting aspect of the conspiracy culture; the people. It’s no coincidence that New World Order is brought to us by the same guys responsible for Darkon, a documentary about live action role-playing. The “LARP’ers” and the “Truthers” share a common theme; escapism. Who doesn’t want to spend their weekends as renegade agents, working to uncover a plot to form a one government world?

I’ve seen my share of conspiracy theory videos. Loose Change and Zeitgeist are particularly sensational, spewing forth facts and figures that seduce audiences into second guessing everything they know about 9/11, religion, the JFK assassination or whatever other theory is being pushed. I fully admit that the collective content of some of these films can appear to be convincing, but the presentation — from a filmmaking standpoint — is usually atrociously pedestrian and the content is completely one sided. Still, these films manage to circulate throughout the internet and in physical form, passed around by friends exclaiming ‘you gotta see this!’; securing new converts and building an army of regular folks who simply want to open people’s eyes to the ‘truth’. Sounds sort of familiar, doesn’t it? I think it’s fair to say conspiracy theorists share some strikingly similar traits with the religious. Specifically; they both want to save people. If you truly believed that 911 was an inside job, orchestrated by the American government, wouldn’t you want to tell the world? Wouldn’t you do everything in your power to open the eyes of the people around you? Alex Jones has certainly been compelled to do so. As the film’s main focus, his signature bull-horn has lead packs of rampaging ‘truthers’ through the streets of New York every September 11th since 2001.

Luke Meyer and Andrew Neel managed to create this half documentary/half fantasy-epic hybrid with Darkon, embracing the idea of the personal fantasy and playing it out on screen like a fever day-dream. New World Order is no different. There are moments in this film that feel like you, and the subjects, are caught up in a Divinci Code-esque adventure, tailing suspected members of the FBI and setting up a surveillance perimeter at a top-secret Bildeburg conference. There’s much adventure to be had in the eyes and minds of the conspiracy theorists involved, and Neel and Meyer are tapping directly into the cinematic conceits of whatever genre film these guys are currently living in at the time.

New World Order shares one important trait with some of my favourite documentaries of all time; passion. The experience of stepping into the shoes of a conspiracy theorist, font enthusiast, live action role playing hobbyist or amateur horror filmmaker is the non-fiction equivalent of spending an hour and a half being stalked by a masked killer or engaging in deep space combat. New World Order is idealogical escapism at its finest.

New World Order premeired May 26th on IFC and is currently available for viewing on demand. Visit www.ifc.com for more information.

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