dirs. Kim Bartley & Donnacha Ó Briain | 74 minutes | 2003 | documentary
On the 11th of April 2002, the world awoke to the news that Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez had been removed from office and had been replaced by a new self -appointed “interim” government. News report after news report carried stories of the mayhem in Caracas, where 11 people had been killed in what were alleged to have been bloody street battles between Chavez supporters and an opposition march. Viewers all over the world were led to believe that Chavez had ordered the killings, and had therefore been forced to resign. What in fact took place was the first coup of the twenty first century, and probably the world’s first media coup.
Venezuela is the world’s 4th largest exporter of oil, and the third highest supplier to the United States. In 1999 Hugo Chavez had been democratically elected president by a landslide majority, promising to end corruption and re-distribute the oil revenue to the 80% of the population who lived in poverty. But from his first day in office Chavez faced powerful enemies both inside and outside Venezuela. Two Irish documentary-makers, Kim Bartley and Donnacha Ó Briain travelled to Venezuela to make a film about this charismatic and unorthodox world leader. They met with Chavez and secured his permission to have full access to film, what was to be, an up close and personal profile. It turned out to be something completely different.
Praise for The Revolution Will Not Be Televised:
“The Revolution Will Not Be Televised gets viewers inside these tense, emotional and occasionally terrifying events with immediacy and, given the confusion of the time, remarkable clarity.” – Washington Post
“… superior example of fearless filmmakers in exactly the right place at the right time.” – Variety
“… riveting… a cautionary examination of the use of television to deceive and manipulate the public.” – New York Times