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Review: Freakonomics

Freakishly mediocre is more like it
By GERALD PEARY  |  September 29, 2010
2.0 2.0 Stars


Aided by journalist Stephen J. Dubner, economist Steven Levitt put his pop theories of surprise causality into book form in 2005's Freakonomics, an unexpected bestseller. The Woodward-Bernstein-lite duo are on camera in Seth Gordon's glib movie version, in which some of Levitt's "rogue" theories are dramatized in a series of mini-documentaries, each directed by a major name in non-fiction cinema. Morgan Spurlock (Super Size Me) explores Levitt's contention that the most important economic decision parents make is what name to give their child. The thesis proves a shaky one, as does almost everything else in this dubious documentary, which includes an episode from Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady (Jesus Camp) trying to show that students will improve their grades if given monetary incentives. Then again, monetary incentives did induce principled filmmakers like Why We Fight's Eugene Jarecki to participate in this schlock.

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  Topics: Reviews , Movies, Movie Reviews, Eugene Jarecki,  More more >
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