TIFF 2018: ‘What is Democracy?’

At a time where democracy is in danger of losing its way, it is necessary to ask a few questions regarding the next steps towards putting democracy back on the right path, and whether democracy is even a system worth saving.  Astra Taylor’s NFB-produced What is Democracy? attempts that feat but, unfortunately, comes up short.

The main issue with this doc is its lack of focus;  discussing the historical roots of democracy in Greek at one moment, and looking at strife in American schools or war-torn regions the next.  While it would be foolish to suggest that these things are not a result of democracy, it would take a year-long film to discuss all the different results.

Ultimately, while this film does do a decent job of gathering many points for and against democracy as a political system, its lack of focus makes it nothing more than a slideshow of ideas.


What is Democracy? screens at TIFF on: 

Thursday, September 13 at 3:15 p.m. @ Jackman Hall (AGO)

Rating: PG
Language: English, Arabic, Spanish, Greek
Runtime: 107 minutes

For more information on the festival, visit the official TIFF webpage here.

Buy tickets here.

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Shahbaz Khayambashi: @ShaKhayam

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