The Yes Men
Fix the world
Review by Ross Anthony

You’ve got to like that optimism. Yoda says, “There is no try, do or do not.” Imagine if you will Michael Moore and Sasha Cohen (minus the meaness) teaming up to fix the world. The YES MEN focus on problems that can be fixed, decide what huge corporations should fix them, then, posing as reps, get themselves on the news professing to “do the right thing.” It’s an alluring scenario with magnetic charm. For instance, regarding a huge chemical plant explosion in India (which caused death or permanent sickness to thousands of residents) YES MEN posing as DOW reps unveil a billion dollar plan to compensate the victims. It aired on BBC.

They have a great amount of audacity. But the doc doesn’t hide their fear, we get to see them sweat before the big hoax.

Then when accused of exacerbating the victims with “false hopes” they fly to India to see if their good intentions were unwisely executed. It’s fun, it’s ballsy, edited with color and humor and hopefully will bring some awareness to the price of greed, and inject some ethics into discussions among the rich and powerful.

I love the “Blue screen scene.” The YES MEN interview pundits in front of a blue screen and then ask them, “What vista would you like to appear behind you in the final production?” The pundits ponder then pose, the earth, space … etc. As if magically, these scenes appear behind them. It’s actually quite beautiful and certainly refreshingly whimsical.

On the negative side. During a rather inconsequential moment in the film a certain hotel brand asks the YES MEN to leave their name out of the production. Then, for no other reason (that I could figure) besides showing their audience what rebels they are -- the YES MEN reveal the name of the hotel. Yes, there’s a slight comedic effect, but worse, it reveals a side of the YES MEN that is not positive, that is not respectful, that is anti-putting-good-into-the-world.

My suggestions: For the next film, include the “good news” that actually is occurring in the world. For example, COFFEERWANDA.com says that 100% of its profits support the people of Rwanda. Of course, this is a small company, but why not take 5 minutes in a feature like this and highlight a bunch of small companies putting the kind of good into the world that the YES MEN profess to want to see more of.

-- Books by Author/Illustrator Ross Anthony --


  • The Yes Men Fix the world. Copyright © 2009.
  • Andy Bichlbaum and Mike Bonanno at www.theyesmen.org

Grade..........................B+ (2.5/4)


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Copyright © 1998-2016 Ross Anthony, Author - Speaker - Solo World Circumnavigator In addition to reviewing films and interviewing celebs at HollywoodReportCard.com, traveling the world, composing great music, motivational speaking, Mr. Anthony also runs his own publishing company in the Los Angeles area. While traversing the circumference of the planet writing books and shooting documentaries, Mr. Anthony has taught, presented for, worked &/or played with locals in over 30 countries & 100 cities (Nairobi to Nagasaki). He's bungee-jumped from a bridge near Victoria Falls, wrestled with lions in Zimbabwe, crashed a Vespa off a high mountain road in Taiwan, and ridden a dirt bike across the States (Washington State to Washington DC). To get signed books ("Rodney Appleseed" to "Jinshirou") or schedule Ross to speak check out: www.RossAnthony.com or call 1-800-767-7186. Check out his other sites too: Author*Illustrator*Speaker, Motobookothon 2009, M9, Write Triangle, TwT. Go into the world and inspire the people you meet with your love, kindness, and whatever it is you're really good at. Check out books by Ross Anthony. Rand() functions, Pho chicken soup, rollerblading, and frozen yogurt (w/ blueberries) also rock! (Btw, rand is short for random. It can also stand for "Really Awkward Nutty Dinosaurs" -- which is quite rand, isn't it?) Being alive is the miracle. Special thanks to Ken Kocanda, HAL, Jodie Keszek, Don Haderlein, Mom and Pops, my family, R. Foss, and many others by Ross Anthony. Galati-FE also deserves a shout out. And thanks to all of you for your interest and optimism. Enjoy great films, read stirring novels, grow.


Last Modified: Tuesday, 06-Oct-2009 10:05:14 PDT