Thursday, June 02, 2011

'Greatest Movie Ever Sold' buys its own hype - JSOnline

Shakespeare was wrong. All the world's a mall, and all of us are consumers.

Some of us even wear our brand loyalty on our sleeves, the product logos on our clothes literally turning us into human billboards.

But even for those who resisted or ignored such extremes, certain transactions are part of an unspoken social contract. Commercials were the price of free TV, and those who paid increasingly high movie-ticket prices did so of their own free will. It was a two-way street in which we bartered away our time or money for the content provided.

But today, the same platforms are subliminally selling us things we don't want in ways we don't even realize through the placement of products whose manufacturers pay to be integrated into the narrative content of films and television shows. An example of this was "Minority Report," in which Tom Cruise walked down futuristic streets lined with advertising that beckoned to him by name. It managed to be both a commentary on product placement and product placement itself.

And so is the comic exposé "Pom Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold." It follows Morgan Spurlock as he - successfully, as the title suggests - attempts to persuade advertisers to help him make a documentary about product placement that is funded with product placement.

Greatest Movie Ever Sold& buys its own hype - JSOnline

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