First there was Michael Moore, now there is Morgan Spurlock. In Pom Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold, Morgan tackles an issue that we all know too well product placement.
What exactly would happen if you got a few million dollar companies decided to invest in a small film about advertising? Well Pom Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Film Ever Sold would happen. Once again we join Morgan Spurlock, Super Size Me and Where in the World is Osama Bin Laden, on his journey though the mystery and magic that is product placement in film. Now obviously if you’ve seen the poster for the film you can get the general gist of it. He wants to see how many companies will sink their money into his film about these companies. Seems like a pretty easy task, basically they pay just a small fee and they get Worldwide distribution. Wrong, watching Morgan struggle for this money is what captured me in the first twenty minutes.
Starting off he of course attempts at some of the media distributors and asks if it’s even a good idea and if they could possibly help. While some say it’s a pretty terrible idea, others seem to influence him and try to help him off the ground. Only to then realize as soon as the camera goes off he will be denied on all fronts. So after many failed attempts at meeting with groups who could hook him up with some of these products, he turns to an old friend of marketing Richard Kirshenbaum. But he’s not the only big name person in this film others include JJ Abrams, Bob Garfield, Michael Levine(who sat next to me last night) and even Ralph Nadar! Without giving too much information about the film you follow Morgan Spurlock around on his journey and uncovering the secrets of the marketing world.
The film has a strong beginning, a good middle and a powerful ending. Following much the style of Super Size Me, Morgan Spurlock brings another light-hearted serious topic film in the only way that he knows possible. With snide comments a plenty about other products that didn’t endorse The Greatest Movie Ever Sold, you definitely get your laughs in. But what exactly is the point of this documentary? Is it to show you marketing is bad, or is it just a big scheme to trick you into wanting more useless junk that you don’t need? I guess it affects everyone differently.
For instance he is specifically big name endorsed by Mini Cooper, JetBlue, Hyatt, and Pom. The only thing that I was really seeking to obtain during that entire film was Pom, and that was just playing on the idea that I was thirsty and that’s all he was allowed to drink. Or could is possibly be the commercial that played directly in the center of the film that caused me to want it. Filling me with information about all the benefits of Pom(for example did you know it helps erectile dysfunction? I didn’t). But Morgan taps on that subject a little bit, mentioning does Burger King really make me want to go see Twilight or does Shrek really make me crave a cruise? It’s all about who they market to and how they do so.
One of the biggest and possibly even the most frightening things that was shown in the movie is a new process called neuro-marketing. Where they take individuals into an MRI and blast commercials at them, reading their brain activity and learning what product sells and what doesn’t. The eerie part about it is after Morgan is exposed to a coke commercial the first thing he says after coming out of the MRI is without joking “I need a coke” Not a want, not a eh this would be nice, but a need. Truly the marketing industry is attempting to get inside our heads further and further and while that can showcase a bit of terror, fret not because without the markets we would not have all the wonderful films we have today.
So in the end is this a film dismissing or enforcing the marketing industry? That’s for you to decide, all I know is after writing this I want a Pom and I think this may be the greatest review ever written for The Greatest Movie Ever Sold.