Heist: Who Stole the American Dream? screens Sunday
You can bank on Heist: Who Stole the American Dream? being different from other movies about the recent economic bust. The 75-minute film traces the crash of 2008 as far back as the '70s. "A lot of times you see documentaries and they're like, 'Here's this big problem, here's who's to blame,' and you get a lot of information about what the problem is...but this film really leaves you with solutions," says Sarah Shirazi, who organized a screening for Colorado Progressive Action. The film is traveling the country on a "Re-imagine America" tour, and will make a stop in Denver on Sunday, October 21.
- Colorado Progressive Coalition uses protest, PR to prevent foreclosure
- Colorado Progressive Coalition and Occupy Denver launch foreclosure action week
- Video: Occupy Denver, Colorado Progressive Coalition protest foreclosures, interrupt auction
The 75-minute documentary, directed and produced by Donald Goldmacher, offers both an explanation of what led to the economic crisis and some possible solutions. Heist ties the crisis to a memo written by Lewis Powell in 1971 and President Bill Clinton's signing of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, which repealed some of the provisions of the Glass-Steagall Act, in 1999.
The foreclosures that increased after the economic collapse is something the Colorado Progressive Coalition has been working on since 2008, trying to pass legislation for foreclosure reform. "Right now a lawyer can simply sign a piece of paper saying your house is in foreclosure without showing any paperwork whatsoever," Shirazi explains. "So the deeds, the loans, all these documents that are required in the sale of a home, they don't have to show any of that. So what it allows them to do is, a lot of the time, fraudulently or unjustly foreclose on people's homes.
"Over the summer we were working to collect signatures for ballot initiatives and we wanted to show Heist because our program director, Corrine Fowler, for the economic justice program had caught wind that this film was coming out and it really was a perfect match for us," she adds.
"It just really frames things in a way which is perfect, because our organization is all about taking action," Shirazi notes. "As the film says, 'It's up to us, so what can we do? How can our voices be involved?' Protecting labor unions, for example, education, investing in energy. These are the things we can do to basically make our lives better and make a better future for America."
The screening will start at 3 p.m. Sunday, October 21 at Su Teatro, and will be followed by a panel discussion led by Fowler with Tracey Stewart, Andrea Mérida and Jason Bosch. Suggested donations start at $10, and will benefit the CPA and Heist.