The Greatest Movie Ever Sold by Morgan Spurlock is an interesting but failed documentary. Spurlock, of Super Size Me fame, has a good topic but The Greatest Movie Ever Sold soon becomes a documentary about itself and not its subject. DVD at Amazon
Spurlock wanted to how movies were sold to advertisers by selling all he could in The Greatest Movie Ever Sold. Where the idea collapses is the documentary soon focuses too much on the process of selling the documentary and forgets the bigger topic: how advertising is pervasive in a movie, around a movie, and before and after a movie is released with things like trailers, fake word of mouth social media campaigns, product placement in the movie, product tie-ins that promote the film in restaurants, and contests to go see the movie.
Anybody with a modicum of interest in advertising and film can see many points Spurlock simply ignores or was ignorant of such as the ability to digitally change the background of a movie so a Pepsi machine is shown in one market and a Coke machine is shown in another.
Spurlock’s documentary does have its moments. The trip to Sao Paolo, a city that banned any form of advertising on its buildings and in its streets is interesting. The segment on how Broward County, Florida having sold its classrooms to Channel One adcasts is selling every possible ad space around its schools is scary especially as few of the so-called educators see the evil. Scariest is how some companies are using MRI scans of people looking at their commercials to better target their audience’s brain.
Overall, The Greatest Movie Ever Sold is interesting but there is nothing of interest left after a single viewing.
Special features for this DVD or Blu-ray documentary are Blu-ray and DVD Bonus Features Include: Commentary track; Workin’ Nine to Five (AM): POM Behind-the-Scenes Featurette; Five Deleted Scenes; Five Commercials.
Exclusive to the Blu-ray are At the Sundance Festival; Shooting for Perfection; 15 minutes of additional deleted scenes.