Wednesday, November 24, 2010

@IDFA: “Client 9,” “Prosecutor”

In straightforward PBS style, Canadian Barry Stevens’s “Prosecutor” follows Luis Moreno-Ocampo, Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), and an unconventional and charismatic Argentinean with a colorful past. Moreno-Ocampo’s resume runs the gamut from bringing to justice the war criminals of his homeland in the 1980s and teaching at Harvard to serving as soccer star Maradona’s lawyer and hosting a “Judge Judy”-type TV show. Five years on the job and still struggling to reel in big Sudanese fish Omar Al-Bashir, Moreno-Ocampo is finally bringing his first case — the prosecution of a Congolese military leader charged with conscripting child soldiers — to trial. Yet what’s most fascinating about “Prosecutor” is that the lead hero, who favors white suits, has less in common with the wise old Nuremberg prosecutor who visits his office to express his support than he does with a onetime Attorney General starring in another doc also screening here at IDFA, “Client 9: The Rise and Fall of Eliot Spitzer.” While Moreno-Campo is probably more likely to be found winding down with “Law and Order” episodes on videotape (glimpsed in his apartment in The Hague) than he is dialing for hookers, he’d do even better to catch Gibney’s film in his spare time. The fate of New York’s steamroller governor could serve as a crucial cautionary tale about the price of moral high ground hubris.

To read the rest of my review visit Filmmaker magazine.

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