Just Do It: A Tale of Modern Outlaws Emily James
Published Oct 09, 2012Aptly titled Just Do It, which, in addition to being a corporate slogan, implies action without thought, this self-proclaimed tale of modern outlaws outlines a handful of childish endeavours conducted by modern protesters in the United Kingdom, detailing their actions and unfocused, often non-existent, rationale. In such, it's simultaneously infuriating and compelling, providing an intimate look at the privileged children of the middle-class, well adjusted to a fault, having never experienced true struggle while living in a vacuum of free time and instant gratification.
Focusing on a handful of activists—mostly undergraduates and cat ladies—Emily James' amateurish documentary goes behind the scenes of an environmental protest at a bank, an anti-capitalism demonstration, a green emissions protest and inevitably the whole Copenhagen thing. The subjects depicted all rehash the same broad tagline of their issue, whether it is the exploitation of carbon emissions corporate allowance, justifying the destruction of private property or interfering with bank operations to protest their investment and loan strategies.
Never once does a subject step back to analyze plausible outcome or logical alternative within the lexicon of modern culture. Rather, they aim to tear down what they perceive as threatening despite only assessing the situation in terms of broad headlines and solipsistic convenience. Some of them even glibly compare themselves to Rosa Parks, presuming that chaining themselves to a bank branch to fight the financing of polluters—without any demonstrated understanding of the world economy or the weirdly ironic freedom it has given them—is the same as standing up against bigotry and racial segregation.
While the intention of this wildly unstructured doc is surely to shed light on the awesomeness of being arrested for protesting an ill-defined, often unfocused, "issue"—something that's eerily similar to martyr pride in Palestine—it instead works as a flashing warning beacon for modern parents. It's important for children to have conviction, but it's more important for them to have individual discernment so they don't hop on dangerous bandwagons without fully understanding why. Although, it is amusing to watch a large group of people try to fight the symptoms of a problem rather than contemplating what the actual cause might be. (Just Do It Film)