After seeing The Greatest Movie Ever Sold (a documentary produced by Morgan Spurlock, who also produced Super Size Me (2004)), I have some generally mixed thoughts for the film.
In this documentary, Spurlock tackles the world of advertising and product placement through the forms of media and he does this by creating a documentary that shows him hiring his own sponsors for what eventually became the end result, the movie we have now. I found the movie entertaining for the most part, since I’ve been a bit partial to noticing product placement in films myself and I appreciate Spurlock’s satirical, “in your face” depiction of a marketing tool that so many people watching modern media don’t even notice, let alone care about. It’s entertaining, it provides insight and the trials and tribulations involved in gaining sponsors. That was exactly what the film was intended to do, and it somewhat delivered, but not quite.
I am a little skeptical of the events in particular that take place throughout the film. It seems like Spurlock only tackles the surface, and doesn’t really go into a whole lot of depth on the predicaments that can occur with regards to sponsorship and advertising. I think the main problem with the film was that it gave a very tilted, biased view on the whole idea of persuading companies to license their product in the film without giving the manufacturer’s or the business’s personal view on whether or not the actions are wise and/or applicable. After all, Spurlock really hit it big with Super Size Me and it seemed like the companies involved were persuaded from declining for that alone; ostensibly out of fear and/or respect.
However, there are some little bits of information that I have learned from watching the film. I had no idea about the prohibition of outdoor advertising in Sao Paolo, for example. I also had no idea what Sheetz or that POM juice even existed…but I do now.
Bottom line: It’s entertaining for those that are interested in this field and if you want a satirical, tongue-in-cheek intake on an important part of modern advertising; you’ll get it. It doesn’t blatantly fail in every aspect and there are some bits of information that are either made more clear or more accessible to the general public, but the film doesn’t do more than just tackle the surface of what is really an important part of film making.