Buzz is starting to build for A Dangerous Game, Anthony Baxter’s follow-up to his Michael Moore-style 2011 documentary You’ve Been Trumped. In that original movie, the filmmaker chronicled some eventual local resistance to a luxury golf course resort development ushered in by The Donald.
The sequel recently premiered at film festival events in Sheffield, England and Edinburgh, Scotland. As part of the latter unveiling, Baxter spoke with the Scottish Daily Record about the climactic centerpiece of his new movie – an interview with Trump. The billionaire did not participate in the first movie and in fact, when the BBC announced plans to broadcast the film, he initially tried to have that airing blocked. From Baxter’s conversation with Record reporter Brian McIver:
“I went to Trump Tower and it was quite a strange experience,” said Baxter. “It was good in the sense we were able to put questions to him that were still remaining from the first film but new questions also emerged in the making of the second film. It was an extraordinary encounter and an important one in terms of being able to put to him directly the issues the residents have endured for so long.”
“He was very charming to begin with but then the atmosphere changed as the interview really began and I was asking him questions about the treatment of the local residents. He completely defends his behavior and thinks it’s totally acceptable to build big mounds of earth in front of people’s houses and shield them from view. He also thinks there is nothing untoward about the way they have treated [small-town farmer] Michael Forbes.”
THR reviewer Stephen Dalton brings up another seeming Moore similarity in Baxter’s movie. One that, no doubt, Trump will be echoing on Twitter once this thing hits American screens:
From one angle, Baxter merely hands Trump enough rope to hang himself, and the results are highly amusing. But believers in even-handed journalism might feel a little uneasy that the interview is edited to make him appear unsympathetic, as he himself predicts. Of course, Trump needs little help to look boorish and arrogant, but he is no fool. A more balanced documentary might have allowed him to state his case with more nuance, however much the filmmakers might loathe him.
Update (October 1, 2015):
Baxter went on to revise A Dangerous Game for television, premiering it Oct. 1 on BBC TV under the title Dark Side of the Greens. He told The Scotsman that the billionaire put forth some intriguing logic with regards to granting that interview:
“Trump started by saying that since the BBC aired your documentary you have become a much more important person in terms of doing the interview and so that is why I am doing the interview. You can see how his mind works.”