The Madoff affair [videorecording] / a Frontline co-production with RAINMedia, Inc. ; written and produced by Marcela Gaviria and Martin Smith ; co-producer, Chris Durrance.
LJ Reviews 2009 September #2
For some 45 years, Bernard Madoff appeared to be a great investment manager when actually he was running a $65 billion Ponzi scheme. Two new documentaries tell the basic story but from complementary perspectives.
The Madoff Affair, first broadcast on PBS on May 12, 2009, uses news clips and on-screen interviews with journalists, industry experts, and investors to look at how Madoff kept the fraud alive. Frontline's exclusive interview with longtime Madoff associate Michael Bienes underscores how everyone deferred to Madoff in the pursuit of money. This investigative examination entertainingly unfolds the Madoff fraud piece by piece; highly recommended for all viewers.
The spring 2009 History Channel documentary Ripped Off takes a different tack to place Madoff's scheme in the broader context of financial history. It compares Madoff's methods to the workings of past criminals and discusses how the financial euphoria of the last two decades blinded investors and the government. As with other History Channel productions, it is filled with file footage and slick computer graphics intercut with on-screen expert opinion and off-screen narration, providing a solid basic introduction to Madoff. A DVD extra is Crash: The Next Great Depression?, a particularly effective film contrasting active government intervention in the current credit crisis with the lack of it at the start of the Great Depression. Ripped Off is recommended for all viewers.—Lawrence R. Maxted, Gannon Univ. Lib., Erie, PA[Page 37]. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.