You've Been Trumped: Movie review

Anna Murray, Yahoo! New Zealand December 3, 2012, 11:41 am

Director: Anthony Baxter

3 / 5

Donald Trump is not a man to shy away from controversy. Some would argue that he openly courts it, based on some of the comments he’s made via his Twitter account.

He recently used said Twitter account to launch an attack on the maker of a documentary about his golf resort project on the north-east coast of Scotland: "@antbaxter Your documentary died many deaths. You have, in my opinion, zero talent."

It's not surprising Trump has reacted in such a way – Anthony Baxter's documentary about the proposed golf course and resort on a pristine stretch of Scottish coastline pulls few punches and does little for the tycoon's image.

The land at the centre of the documentary is described as "Scotland’s Amazon rain forest", and Trump has bought it up – with the blessing of Scottish authorities – to create his new golf resort vision.

Understandably the local residents in the area are none too happy about the development going on next to their houses - and are living in fear that they may fall victim to compulsory purchase orders and be pushed off their land for good.

'You've Been Trumped' documents the fight these locals embark on to stop Trump in his tracks. It's a fight that involves, amongst other things, water and power being cut off at homes, large mounds of earth dumped next to houses and claims of intimidation. The film-maker himself even winds up arrested. (Don't worry, the film uses subtitles so that those not used to hearing a strong northern Scottish accent - myself included - can understand what's going on.)

Although it starts off a bit slowly, and its mechanism of splicing footage from 'Local Hero', which was filmed in the disputed area in 1983, is clumsy, by the end of the documentary, you can't help but feel outraged at what is unfolding on screen.

Some might argue the documentary is very one-sided, but Baxter says he gave Trump and local authorities ample time and opportunity to refute the claims being made against them. They chose not to take that opportunity. Perhaps because they don’t have a leg to stand on?

'You've Been Trumped' is in New Zealand cinemas from December 6.

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