The Killings of Tony Blair, 2016.
Directed by Sanne van den Bergh and Greg Ward.
Featuring George Galloway, Stephen Fry, Noam Chomsky, Clare Short, Lauren Booth, Ken Livingstone and Will Self.
George Galloway presents a feature documentary examining the prime-ministerial career of Tony Blair and his business activities since leaving office.
For many people outside of the political classes George Galloway has been something of a perplexing figure. Someone with the ability to lucidly draw attention to the many problems of world politics – he defended himself memorably in front of the US senate – he is someone with a gift for soundbites and pithy responses.
However, the decision to front this feature documentary himself is a big mistake. Despite having the ability and the credentials to bring necessary discussion post-Chilcot on Blair’s career, Galloway is also someone with the potential to draw attention away from the facts. Many who remember his ill-judged reality TV appearance see him as a fame-hungry provocateur, not really an attribute needed for a serious investigations of Blair’s money making activities and alleged war crimes.
The documentary would therefore have been far more hard-hitting without Galloway at its centre. Maybe it would have been better if he had just acted as the narrator? But no, he’s there every five minutes, usually at the centre of talks with a long list of political and cultural figures. Showing off his resplendent overcoat for all to approve of, or door stepping political figures in roving reporter mode.
Galloway is without doubt a smart and critical thinker, but making yourself the focus when the point is an analysis of someone else’s decisions makes the final product lost and confused.
This is not the only problem. Hurried looking satirical animation just looks amateurish and the variety of talking heads popping up just stretches out the running time. All in all then, not the best stick to beat old Tony with. I’m sure the facts speak louder than George on this occasion…
The Killings of Tony Blair is available on DVD and digital HD now.
Flickering Myth Rating – Film: ★ ★ / Movie: ★★
Robert W Monk is a freelance journalist and film writer.