waitingfornesara.com // 2005 // 90 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // August 1st, 2006
Blessed are those who believe without seeing.
Ever hear of NESARA? According to The Open Mind Forum, NESARA (National Economic Stabilization and Recovery Act) will represent the dawning of a new chapter in the United States -- and a much-welcome one at that. The Open Mind Forum is the subject of Zeb and Elisa Haradon's documentary. Comprised mainly of excommunicated Mormons, this collective meets in the back room of the local Kentucky Fried Chicken, and discuss the impending changes that will accompany the official implementation of NESARA, a bill supposedly signed by Bill Clinton but withheld by sinister forces. Once the bill passes, the IRS will be abolished, all personal debt will be forgiven, Congress will be jettisoned and the current administration will be replaced by a new, purer form of a constitutional government. To lead this government, the Man himself, Jesus Christ, will return to Earth aboard a UFO. George Bush, Tony Blair, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and a host of other world leaders will be exposed as the evil reptilians they are and booted out of office. For The Open Mind Forum, life on Earth will then be fantastic! I guess they're a cult, though they have less a discernible doctrine and more a stream of consciousness fueled by New Age hodgepodge and Star Trek reruns.
A married couple, Jim and Marge, are the focal point of the documentary. They lead The Open Mind Forum, facilitating the discussions and prophecy-spewing in the KFC meeting room, and imparting the latest info from the head honcho Dove of Oneness, as well as an assemblage of conduits to the Galactic Council. A dozen or so believers show up to the meetings, all of whom have a story of alien abduction or lizard-man encounters to share with each other. As the War in Iraq looms, The Open Mind Forum clings to the belief that spaceships will arrive soon to thwart the machinations of George Bush and prompt the release of NESARA.
I'm all for people believing whatever they want (as long as the belief
doesn't translate into explosions on mass transit conveyances), and I'm sure
more than a few people would label my belief in the divinity and
universe-creating power of a 30-something Jewish carpenter to be utter fiction,
but these people are bat-@#$% crazy. It is, however, a harmless and strangely
endearing brand of bat-@#$% crazy and a part of me couldn't help but feel a
teensy bit sorry for these lovably, insane kids.
The fact that this film isn't a hit-piece at the expanse of The Open Mind Forum is a testament to the skill of the filmmakers. Do these guys come across as out of their gourd? Sure, but I never thought they were a freakish sideshow, filmed and harpooned for my laughter and derision. The Haradons humanized their subjects, and when the film ended I simply thought: "Wow, these are nice people. They've found purpose in their lives. And they're cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs." One scene in particular stands out to me: Marge is reading the latest dispatch from whatever cruel, anonymous wacko is sending out galactic instructions, and begins choking up midway through. She obviously believes this with all of her heart, to the point where talking about Jesus flying around in a UFO and engaging terrestrial reptile-men gets her misty-eyed. Fascinating.
We know how the drama of spaceships arriving to prevent The Iraq War panned out (I didn't notice any) and I felt the pangs of sympathy for The Open Mind Forum as their worldview came crashing down around them. Perhaps that's the greatest compliment I can give to the Haradons and their prowess as filmmakers. They made me feel for these characters, no matter how detached from reality I thought they were.
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Scales of Justice
* Full Frame
* Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo (English)
Running Time: 90 Minutes
Release Year: 2005
MPAA Rating: Not Rated