The Fall of Fujimori

Film Review by Dean Duncan May 28, 2015

Independent docs frequently have that unfortunate, off-putting strain to them. They use dramatic devices partly smuggled out of the fiction camp, or otherwise used by tacky ghost-hunter type non-fictions. You know: dramatic musical underscoring, a straining toward solemnity and significance. It’s too bad, since so often—here, for instance—the story doesn’t need any help at all. The Fall of Fujimori illustrates the basic truth of educational documentary. It is that there’s no end to what we don’t know, and to what we should learn. We could do worse than spending our time, our lives maybe, filling in the gaps. As for this one, it’s some story! On the one hand it is full of really instructive Latin American reality, Peru-specific, and also resonating through the regions roundabout. On the other, Fujimori emerges as almost Shakespearean, as are the actors and the events that surround him.