The Cleveland International Film Festival promotes artistically and culturally significant film arts through education and exhibition to enrich the life of the community.
Country: United States
Run Time: 80 minutes
In 1971 a 19-year-old named William Powell wrote The Anarchist’s Cookbook. Made in the turbulent era of the Vietnam War, the book laid out a manifesto against the government. Its message also offered violence as a means to bring about political change. Included in the text were recipes to make bombs, which have been used by viscous criminals to carry out attacks and linked to school shootings in Columbine and elsewhere, as well as the Oklahoma City bombings and the shooting of U.S. Representative Gabby Giffords. Terrorists from ISIS and Al Queda have reportedly used it as well. After its publication, Powell became disillusioned by his own words. He moved abroad to teach children with disabilities and largely ignored the book and its legacy. In AMERICAN ANARCHIST, the filmmakers ponder whether Powell has done enough throughout the years to denounce his writings. The interviews become uncomfortable when the author is confronted with the carnage connected to his text. This striking documentary provides proof that our words can live on forever, regardless of whether or not we still believe them. —E.F.
Wednesday, April 05, 2017 at 2:20 PM
Thursday, April 06, 2017 at 9:40 PM
Recommended for High School Students +
Nesnadny + Schwartz Portrait Documentary Competition
Charlie Siskel is an Oscar®-and Emmy-nominated filmmaker from Los Angeles, California. He is the nephew of film critic Gene Siskel. He began his career as a producer on Michael Moore's award-winning television series The Awful Truth.
"Finding Vivian Maier" (2013), AMERICAN ANARCHIST (2016)