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The story of the hacktivists
December 12, 2012 7:40 PM   Subscribe

It’s amazing the Anonymous documentary We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists ever saw the light of day. It’s not that no theaters wanted to show it — it performed well at film festivals — or that filmmaker Brian Knappenberger didn’t want to release it. He just couldn’t finish it. And that’s just the way it goes when you’re making a documentary about an ever-expanding and ever-evolving group like Anonymous. (via Wired)

"The film is most illuminating in showing how democratic practice can still find a new voice and innovative means with each generation." - NYTimes review

"... theirs is an increasingly rare spirit of revolt. "Expect us," they say, though the meaning of that warning remains in flux; the evolution toward a consistency of ideals has proved as tricky as Knappenberger makes it engrossing and essential to watch." - Village Voice review.

On-line release site of the documentary.
posted by warbaby (12 comments total) 19 users marked this as a favorite

 
Saw this at SXSW last year, and it's pretty good, but also a little deluded about the group's impact and importance, I think -- for example, it portrays the Scientology protests as a big Anon triumph, when my sense is that in reality they basically turned out to be a barely-audible fart noise.
posted by eugenen at 8:01 PM on December 12, 2012 [3 favorites]


$9.99?

I'm going to fucking pirate that thing immediately.
posted by blackfly at 10:39 PM on December 12, 2012 [5 favorites]


And that’s just the way it goes when you’re making a documentary about an ever-expanding and ever-evolving group like Anonymous.

Isn't that true of a lot of documentaries? Sure, you can end on some moment - a victory, a death, a defeat, the end of a war - but quite a lot of those moments could also not be the ending. You could deal with the aftermath of a victory or a defeat, look at someone's continuing legacy and continue on past that ending point if you wanted. And if you're doing a documentary on many things there isn't even always that obvious an ending point. Maybe that's a minor issue, but I don't see how making a documentary about Anonymous is that different from making a documentary about many other movements in that way.
posted by lesbiassparrow at 10:54 PM on December 12, 2012


Isn't Anonymous kinda like Al-Qaeda that in they don't really exist as a single entity and anyone proclaiming to be from Anonymous probably has little to do with the branches (splinters? sects?) that do?
posted by PenDevil at 11:33 PM on December 12, 2012


I'm sorry, Anonymous documentary? Success? Voice of revolt? I just lolled. Loudly. All I've seen this group do is be an annoying fly buzzing around. The latest was hacking some random databases of top-tier schools and publishing the files online. Net result? A bunch of students spending their daily procrastination time trying to figure out if their identity was thrived. Read: I'm a full time student with 3 part time jobs. I don't have the fucking time to be prancing around figuring out if these guys stole my fucking identity or not. I'm trying to pass chemistry here.
posted by DoubleLune at 11:39 PM on December 12, 2012 [1 favorite]


With a mouse in my hand I shall conquer the land, and eat another order of chicken quesadillas from the Tex-Mex delivery place up the block. I AM ANONYMOUS! I mean I'm like, a part of it. But don't piss us off or else we'll do something REALLLY annoying!
posted by ReeMonster at 1:19 AM on December 13, 2012


I know, rite? They haven't even unseated global kleptocracy yet! Only an asshole could care about such (an) ineffectual movement(s)!!1!eleventytwelve!!!!1
posted by Joseph Gurl at 3:34 AM on December 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


I watched half of this recently and thought it was OK. But some of the self congratulatory blathering on was too much. It interesting that online groups can have some impact on real world stuff. But just shutting down a website via DOS attacks for a day or so isn't really that disruptive.

It would be interesting to see some more Fight Club style destruction.
posted by mary8nne at 4:05 AM on December 13, 2012


It would be interesting to see some more Fight Club style destruction.

MAL: Define "interesting"...

WASH: "Oh god, oh god, we're all going to die?!?!?"...
posted by Strange Interlude at 5:59 AM on December 13, 2012


Read: I'm a full time student with 3 part time jobs. I don't have the fucking time to be prancing around figuring out if these guys stole my fucking identity or not. I'm trying to pass chemistry here.

This kind-of sums-up my current view of "Anonymous". Every time I hear of yet another event with their name associated with it, the end results always strike me as being a huge problem for common citizens, and no big deal, in the end, for the target organization.
posted by Thorzdad at 6:17 AM on December 13, 2012


"democratic practice" - that's what it's called now?
posted by gertzedek at 6:48 AM on December 13, 2012


Why would I pay $9.99 to watch a doco about a bunch of disassociated goons launching DDOS attacks and defacing websites? I might be showing my age, but long before this Anonymous thing came along, the catch cry of so-called "information anarchists" was, "Information wants to be free".

$9.99 -ne free
posted by Diag at 2:39 AM on December 14, 2012


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