Oct. 7 2009 12:00 AM

Michael Moore takes aim at Capitalism

Michael Moore’s latest movie takes on the biggest issue of his filmmaking career: capitalism, the economic system that encourages private investment and business, rather than a government-controlled economy. In “Capitalism: A Love Story,” Moore explains how capitalism, the propulsion of the American economy, has failed its people and filled the pockets of the rich. The film clearly demonstrates that Moore hasn’t lost his gift for stirring the pot, revealing the inequities in the American system, but one senses that the subject is too large, and his treatment is a bit scattershot. His punch isn’t quite as stinging as in past docs like “Fahrenheit 9/11” and “Sicko.”

A la Moore, “Capitalism” is full of big laughs, heartbreaking testimonies, revelations of outrageous and inhuman inequities, and even some personal disclosures. The funniest moments are provided by the use of two old films. In the first segment, Moore dubs the voiceover from a 1950s movie with current information to reveal parallels between the excesses and fall of the Roman Empire to today’s America. In the second movie, Jesus’ voice is dubbed, having him proselytize to the poor and his foll o w e r s that capitalism is bad and greed is evil. We know what happened to Jesus when he went up against the system.

Moore believes Americans have been brainwashed to believe in the elusive “American Dream” -out of five — that if they work hard enough, they too will be rich. The truth is that the net worth of 1 percent of Americans is more than 95 percent of the rest of us combined. This inequity has made Moore mad as hell, and he won’t take it anymore. He hopes you won’t either.

“Capitalism: A Love Story”

Directed by Michael Moore 120 minutes. Rated R