Little was known about what Michael Moore’s been up to film-wise since 2009’s Capitalism: a Love Story. It turns out that’s because his next film was already made — secretly.
The film’s existence was made known this morning when it was announced as part of the lineup at the Toronto Film Festival. It’s called Where to Invade Next and is, as Michael Moore said during a Q&A on Periscope, about “the issue of the United States in infinite war” and the constant quest for “the next enemy.” This notion, he said, provides the “necessary satire for this film.”
Moore also discussed the clandestine nature of the filming process, acknowledging that this is why people may have begun speculating on why he hadn’t produced anything in so long:
Now the secret is out: I have a new movie. We’re very excited about having the premiere in Toronto. I’ve been very quiet about the making of this film. You probably haven’t seem much of me… We’ve been very diligent about keeping this under cover.
Moore mentions that they had a very small crew, because they oftentimes had to move at a moment’s notice, “usually with someone chasing” them.
Just as the vague official description calls it “provocative” and “hilarious” (as an official description would), the director stated that while it’s nonfictional social commentary, his aim was very much to entertain:
The first thing I tell a crew on day one is that we’re not making a documentary, we’re making a movie… You can tell a good story with fiction, you can tell a good story with nonfiction. We choose nonfiction, but it’s a movie. Because I’m asking you to give up your Friday or Saturday night and come to the theater and buy a ticket and $9 popcorn — that’ll be my next movie… But I want you to have the best cinematic experience you could possibly have.
Thom Powers, the documentary programmer at the Toronto Film Festival, spoke to The Hollywood Reporter of having seen the film a couple of weeks ago, and corroborated its enjoyability with a glowing review. He said he was “hugely impressed,” that “it’s going to be a big conversation starter this fall,” and that it’s “up there with Moore’s best work.”
Here’s the first image from the film:
And here’s the Q & A: