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Generation Wealth

“Lauren Greenfield is on to something. The sociographic photo-essayist best known to moviegoers for her documentary portraits Thin and The Queen of Versailles has spent a quarter-century chronicling excess in all its forms: luxury living, hyper-consumerism, substance abuse, plastic surgery, child beauty pageants, spoiled celebrity kids, strippers, escorts, and trophy wives. With Generation Wealth — an unexpectedly personal documentary — she makes a compelling argument for a society on the brink of precipitous decline, choosing to interpret the runaway vanity and rampant materialism observed in her own work as harbingers of our imminent destruction.

“Greenfield dedicates much of Generation Wealth to her own situation, interviewing her parents about what shaped this fixation she seems to have with status, and coming clean on the way that her dedication to her work gets in the way of family time. As in any depiction of wealth, there’s an inevitable sense of “schadenfreude” (that wonderful German word for pleasure in seeing others’ misfortune) that arises, pounded home late in the documentary as Jeff Beal’s score works overtime to convey that greed has ruined the lives of nearly everyone Greenfield ever chronicled.” - Variety

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