Bowling for Columbine

( 73 )

Overview

Filmmaker, author, and political activist Michael Moore trains his satirical eye on America's obsession with guns and violence in his third feature-length documentary, which gets its title from a pair of loosely related incidents. On April 20, 1999, shortly before they began their infamous killing spree at Columbine High School in Littleton, CO, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold attended their favorite class, a no-credit bowling course held at a bowling alley near the school, the same bowling alley which would become...
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Overview

Filmmaker, author, and political activist Michael Moore trains his satirical eye on America's obsession with guns and violence in his third feature-length documentary, which gets its title from a pair of loosely related incidents. On April 20, 1999, shortly before they began their infamous killing spree at Columbine High School in Littleton, CO, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold attended their favorite class, a no-credit bowling course held at a bowling alley near the school, the same bowling alley which would become the scene of a robbery and triple homicide two years later. While pondering these events, Moore humorously considers the link between random violence and the game of ten pins; along the way, Moore calls on the Michigan Militia and gets to know some of the models for their "Militia Babes" calendar; spends some time with James Nichols, brother of Oklahoma City bombing accomplice Terry Nichols; visits K-Mart's corporate offices with two teenagers injured in the Columbine massacre as they ask the retail chain to stop selling bullets for handguns; investigates the media's role in the American climate of fear and anger; compares crime statistics in the United States with those of Canada which, despite higher unemployment and a larger number of guns per capita, manages to rack up a small fraction of the homicides committed in the United States, and questions actor and National Rifle Association president Charlton Heston regarding his appearance at a pro-gun rally held in Littleton a few days after the Columbine massacre, and a similar rally in Flint, MI, after a six-year-old boy killed a classmate with a gun he took from his uncle's house. Bowling for Columbine received its first public screening at the 2002 Ann Arbor Film Festival; the film's official premiere took place a few months later at the Cannes Film Festival.
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Mark Deming
In Michael Moore's best work, the director's attitude toward his subject walks a fine line between bemusement and bitter outrage, and those two extremes are closer than one might ever expect in his film Bowling for Columbine. Moore's examination of America's three-way addiction to guns, violence, and fear doesn't offer many answers to the tough questions it poses, but to a large degree that's part of the point; one of the film's most telling moments comes when Moore interviews the father of one of the students killed in the Columbine High School massacre, and after a while he can only conclude ruefully that he simply doesn't know why America has become such a violent society. Of course, Moore certainly has his opinions about this matter, but for every moment where he's taking on K-Mart for selling handgun ammo or Charlton Heston for appearing at major pro-gun rallies days after highly publicized incidents of handgun violence (in the latter case, at least Moore's entitled as a member of the NRA), there's another where Moore sets out to find if it's true that Canadians don't lock their doors by simply barging in unannounced, or visits a bank where you can get a free rifle for opening a savings account. Moore is able to make the absurdity of real life communicate his message just as well as his rage or sadness, and the film's pointed but effective comedy not only makes the film more entertaining, but also reinforces the more somber (and sometimes shocking) material elsewhere. Bowling for Columbine has an obvious and specific political agenda (and your appreciation of the film may well have a lot to do with the degree to which you share his views), but Moore seems less interested in determining who is right or wrong than in asking what can be done to make America a safer and saner place to live, and for all the craziness (both funny and disturbing) on view, it's the shaggy regular-guy humanity of Bowling for Columbine that makes it most effective, both as a polemic and as cinema.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 8/19/2003
  • UPC: 883904126355
  • Original Release: 2002
  • Source: Mgm (Video & Dvd)
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 20,883

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Michael Moore Participant
Charlton Heston Participant
Matt Stone Participant
Marilyn Manson Participant
Dick Clark Participant
George W. Bush
James Nichols himself
Barry Glassner himself
Richard Castaldo Participant
Brandon T. Jackson Participant
Technical Credits
Michael Moore Director, Producer, Screenwriter
Charles Bishop Producer
Matthew Bookbinder Animator
Dave Concepcion Animator
Gaia Cornwall Animator
Jim Czarnecki Producer
Brian Danitz Camera Operator
James Demer Sound/Sound Designer
Michael Donovan Producer
Kurt Engfehr Co-producer, Editor
Jeff Gibbs Score Composer
Bob Gleason Animator
Kathleen Glynn Producer
Bob Golden Score Composer
Miguel Hernandez Animator
Francisco Latorre Sound/Sound Designer
Michael McDonough Camera Operator
Harold Moss Animator
T. Woody Richman Animator
Kareem Thompson Animator
Wolfram Tichy Executive Producer
Aneurin Wright Animator
Rehya Young Co-producer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 73 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(46)

4 Star

(6)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(19)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 73 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 12, 2011

    Highly recommended - great for discussions

    I didn't know what to expect. This movie really gives you something to think about when it comes to guns, gun control, and all the different things that drive people to do what they do. This movie doesn't just address the Columbine tragedy but includes tragedy in general. Makes you think about the glorification people put on news and violence. Explains how the media, writers, film makers, etc. have more of a conscious regarding how much money they will make versus the influence they will have on people (especially young people). As they say sex and violence sells which is a sad state of our society. I now have a lack of respect for Charlton Heston (ironic how he played Moses in the Ten Commandments).

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Why Michael Moore now has an Oscar

    Bowling for Columbine a documentary on about the massacre at Columbine High School in Colorado, and how the gun laws in America, along with the current state of American culture, played a role in how the events that day folded out. First off, I must say that I am a Michael Moore junkie. I think that he is not only brilliant, but he's also on the fore-front of repairing America. This documentary is, in every meaning of the word, amazing. Not only does it explain why guns should be regulated, but it also explains the other side of the story why people want to keep guns. Five stars a million, if Barnes and Noble would allow me to give it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Every American needs to see this documentary.

    I never liked Michael Moore, I always thought he was just some fat liberal dork. But after actually watching this movie, I was proven wrong. This guy really knows what hes doing. Bowling for Columbine points out many very important issues that are just simply ignored by us Americans. Most of us aren't even aware of them. It really opened up my eyes and changed my perspective on things. My only compliant is that he kind of makes gun owners look bad by interviewing some strange people but other than that the rest of the movie is extremely informative and well worth your time. I think every American definitely needs to see this movie, you won't be disappointed.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Great Film

    I saw this film in my English class for the second time. Although this time, his message sunk in a little better than the first time. I was amazed at how simple it is to purchase a gun in this country. Michael Moore tried to find the answer as to why us Americans are so violent. Racism also comes into play in this film and I have to say I agree with many of the points Moore made. It’s always a black man on TV portrayed as the crack-fiend monster out to get you. Yet you have teenage white kids shooting each other in the middle of the country. Moore also expressed his views on violence in the media, and how the media scares Americans into panic, causing them to waste exorbitant amounts of money to prepare for these cataclysmic events. I just don’t understand, and neither does Michael Moore for that matter, how we are so violent in this country. The movie even expresses how our neighboring country Canada, has rarely any violence at all. I actually don’t believe this, because there is violence everywhere in the world. I do however believe that the environment in Canada is a better place to raise children, since everything advertised to us is about sex, violence and money. To me, those are the three words that make you money in this country. And I think that Michael Moore did an excellent job in expressing that we as Americans need a change in our lives.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Bowling for the Columbine

    When I started seeing the movie I thought it was just going to be a boring documentary like any other. But after I started getting more into it, I saw that it showed a reality among Americans. I liked how Moore starts interviewing persons who are in those towns who are more exposed to violence. Also, Moore does all his interviews with a very cool sense of humor which makes the movie funnier to watch.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    It is Double moral a model to follow?

    Watching this documentary, and contrasting it with North American history, makes me realize that Unites States is a nation founded with principles that send their citizens to act based on a double moral behavior. How could it be possible to teach our children tolerance, freedom, peace, and love for the others, if at the same time they are being influenced to be attracted to use weapons by the media, and some organizations like riffle association, and even the government, with the excuse of using them to defend the freedom of the country or for its own defense? How can a country be secure if buying a riffle is easier than buying a pound of flour in the supermarket? The documentary touches the sore of a reality that affected and will continue affecting the American society while double moral still as a value of our government institutions.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    ALL IS ABOUT VIOLENCE

    This film made by Michael Moore involves a journey where the author try to find answers of why people buy guns and how in some cases have affected innocent people. It exposes how dangerous is to use guns with or without a permission. There is an example of the little girl of six years old that was shot by another child with no reason, and here is where a lot of questions arise, why that little child had a gun, why nobody inside the school noted or control that, or coming to the present why parents don’t know what their children used to have, or most important why should happen terrible situations to can apply new rules and punishments. In other hand, there is another example of the two teenagers that were shot, and make guilty K-mart as the weapon manufacturing, so is it possible that you can consider that the origin of all is the place that sell this, are they really guilty, or it is guilty the person who buy it with a dangerous purpose. In the film he also travels to Canada, and make a comparison with United States, it is amazing that people in Canada do not lock their doors, and be so calm, in contrast with this country where people is worried about to be protected also with guns. Canada has the same access to many of the same weapons, but do not have the same violent culture. Moore also makes some interviews, and a lot of time he pushes the people to say more than they feel, that’s the way I see it. Here is when I note that Moore is very subjective with the film, because it is more about his feelings, and of course about people that in a moment suffered with any accident, but I think that to make a kind of film like this he should be more objective. There is also a cartoon about the Usa’s colonization that is a very big example of the violence in this country showing that it is not only now but also since a lot of years ago. So could it be possible that at this time with a gun control we could stop violence, that maybe a new president could stop it or at least apply more control over the use of weapons. Maybe that was the message of Michael Moore to be more conscientious of the world where we are living now and how to improve it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    America Responsible.

    Bowling for columbine, is about the problems of guns crimes in America. The idea of the film is to persuade the Americans to change their beliefs about guns and the laws that let us have a gun in our house. It shows us other countries such as Canada and their policies and how America has the highest percentage in gun crimes and death, even though other countries have the same amount of guns. Michael Moore (the director) not only discusses bout guns, but also about race, fear and violence he involves celebrities to give their opinion. After watching the film a lot of questions went trough my head, I didn’t know if the people, meaning us are treated justly?, how come everybody is able to buy bullets that can actually kill people in stores such as “k-mart”?, do we have to make a protest every time something like this happens in order for us to be heard?? I stared wondering why in Canada people can live their doors open and not be afraid that someone is going to sneak into their house at night? I believe there is no other person to blame but the government for not listening, for waiting until the last minute to stop selling guns in a place that is accessible for kids and irresponsible people. Everything is a chain, what makes 2 kids walk into a bowling place and kill dozens of people? Not education? The parents are not home everyday? Well let’s see, they can’t be home because the have to work more than 12 hours a day just because the are on welfare and because of this the can’t be on top of their kids supervising every move. I agree with every part of the film, I think it shows us what the government is not doing and the issues that Americans have to live up with every day.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    ENC1102

    I’ve always heard about this documentary, but the title never did caught my eye however, I did end up watching it and yes indeed after all fulfilled my eyes. It is much more than an informative documentary, it makes you go beyond every single political and social issue, and it is so unbelievable how in the end everything connects. Every point Michael Moore brought up was extraordinary, he made the movie also very entertaining in some way yes he brought up the unfortunate events in which were cause by the effects of handguns, one in which he went to Columbine and visited the survivors of the deadly tragic he also went to Kmart and asked to ban ammunitions since the killers in Columbine had purchased them from Kmart. Also, near the end of the movie, Moore explores the shooting of the 6 year old girl in Flint by the 6 year old boy in which in the end it is blamed on the mother, because the boy's mother is forced to take a bus 40 miles each way from Flint to the Great Lakes for work, and the point given is that the mother didn’t have enough time to spend with her child. The movie also ends with an interview with Charlton Heston, which Moore makes him look very much so embarrassing and speechless. Moreover, I recommend this documentary to everyone, you may dislike it but in the end it’s a controversial subject and everyone should see it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Discrimination!!!

    Patricia Orozco I agree on the points of discrimanitation,is all likend together. If i'm an african american does that mean i'm a criminal. The movie was good and it gets to the point.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Honesty, no lies here

    If one believes in magic, I can see how that same person may want to discredit the director. Watch it and make your own mind up.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Liar/Manipulator Moore Outdoes Himself

    This is one of the worst pieces of propaganda I've even seen re: the Second Amendment, US gun laws, the Constitution, US history, the work ethic and I can go on. Josef Goebbels would be proud to have produced this garbage. It's that bad. Not only does Moore prevaricate at every turn by bending, twisting and outright lying as regards the truth about gun control and the horrible events at Columbine, but he also expects those in the audience who have a brain not to use it. His blatantly biased and concocted treatment of the "facts" as he would like us to believe them to be defies rational logic. It's little wonder that the French love him and his leftist views about our country. He's a super cheerleader for the anti- American attitude many of our "friends" over there who have all too soon forgotten who saved their bacon at least three times last century (WWI, WWII, Dien Bien Phu). God only knows how many more times we'll have to do it again in this one. Anyone who thinks this is a good movie that addresses real issues honestly is either grossly deceived or knowingly allowing him/herself to be duped and bamboozled. This movie sucks, and Moore's thinly vieled, inaccurate and downright wrong criticism of our rights and the many, many responsible people who exercise them every day is a disgrace. But then, I guess it's good box office...

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A movie that will change your life.

    In this amazing film you learn more about the obsession in this country for guns. Michael Moore does an excellent job of showing how guns have changed this country for the worse. Whether you like it or not this film is very powerful and will bring much impact upon you.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    life changing

    as a young american girl, i see the things michael moore outlines in this movie every day. in the media, all i ever hear is violence. i attend high school, and to think that something like columbine could have ever happened, let alone happen again is a very scary thing. i saw this movie in the beginning of the year and it changed me. i recommend this movie to all people of all ages. this is an important issue and i think michael moore brilliantly represents it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Shootings on Campus show Alienation of Students

    Bowling for Columbine gives the right answer to why the shootings happened in a high school in the U.S. Michael Moore makes the connection between the U.S. military and it's effect on our culture and values which has left the youth of today more alienated. Human rights are more in demand now than during the 1960's when students protesting war were shot on college campuses by the National Guard.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    a *powerful* documentary//5 stars, here's why...

    i'm a 21 year old college student that never heard of michael moore until this movie came out. i'll admit, as an american, i don't pay as much attention to politics and problems with america as much as i should. i really wanted to be a journalist. when i saw this movie, it really got me thinking-it's been a LONG time since a movie had such an impact on me. i agree with what mr. moore put forth in this documentary. after i saw this movie, it really made me think twice about being in media. i live in suburbs and in a nice neighborhood. i'm not rich or anything but i never realized how greatful i should be. seeing the neighborhoods in flint and how people lived (especially seeing that welfare to work program) made me feel gratefull. it was sad to see whats going on in america and that people are so quick to pick up guns when they're scared. this movie is a must-see. you can't please everyone and this movie will have followers and haters, but at least i'm willing to respect michael moore as an american and having opionions and bringing to light some issues. i think that's a problem with americans today-we can't respect each other (especially opionions and feelings).

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    When did liberal and truth become a bad word?

    I was so happy to see an honest portrayal of guns and violence in America. Bowling for Columbine gives an honest and forthcoming look at crime.and shows that although the media usually puts a black or hispanic face on crime stories the real culpret is usually a white face. This should be mandatory viewing for all public highschool social studies classes

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    yep... i'm a liberal who hates guns

    My subject line pretty much says it all. I hate guns. Hate em hate em hate em. This movie just confirmed what I felt..... and I love it when other people agree with me (or at least agree that private citizens owning guns aren't helping our society in any way). Thank you Mr. Moore.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    everyone should watch

    Michael Moore makes people face the problems that are plaguing this country. He looks for answers, although I don't know how many he was able to find by the people in the US. It's very interesting to hear the way Canadians live and think. We may need to look outside of this country and try to see why others live without the fear that we do. It's eye opening.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    If you want an objective look at the gun problem in the U.S., look elsewhere

    Proving once again that he looks at the world through jade-colored glasses (or is it yellow, to match his so-called journalism?), Michael Moore rolls up his left sleeve and engages in yet another no-holds-barred attack on those who are wrong as far as he is concerned. Who died and made him God? Anyone watching this movie who has half a brain will see instantly that he lays the blame for violence in the U.S. squarely at the feet of the NRA. He didn't truly give the media their due blame for the violence problem in this country (a media that is owned and run primarily by liberals), and he didn't even touch the justice system that has been so diluted (by who else but the liberals he defends so staunchly) that murderers are allowed to kill without so much as a slap on the wrist. Nor did he examine the devaluation of life being forced down America's throat by people who believe personal convenience overrides an unborn child's right to exist (guess which political persuasion is pushing THAT agenda?). For crying out loud, he didn't take an honest look at the NRA; a group of people who are largely law-abiding citizens who take their responsibilities seriously. Yes, the NRA has its share of 'gun nuts,' but so do the inner-city gangs. Let's face it: Michael Moore doesn't understand the meaning of the words 'objectivity' or 'fairness.' He looks at an issue, decides all by himself what the problem is, then he goes out and finds evidence (primarily opinion) to support his position. Don't be fooled, and DON'T waste your time or money watching this movie.

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 73 Customer Reviews