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Erasing David


A social stuntumentary for those who live in holes

Rod Lott June 15th, 2011

After his personal data was lost with millions of other Brits on two government CDs, ordinary guy David Bond decided to undertake a documentary project: Giving them only his name and photo, he hired two private investigators to find him as he leaves home and "vanishes." They had 30 days.

erasingdavid

It's a great idea for a stunt film, but terribly executed — a doc for the overly paranoid and the flat-out clueless.

Before going off the grid, Bond requests documents from companies he's done business with and is absolutely stunned — stunned — at the devious, nefarious things he learns. Amazon knows everyone he's sent a gift to through their site! His web provider knows the URLs he's visited! The clinic he once went to has his phone number! Next thing you'll tell me, his phone company probably knows — gasp! — all the long-distance calls he's made!

The investigators sniff out his trail partly through public records and partly through Bond's acts of utter stupidity. Although one would think he knows better, he makes one dumb-ass move after another, from throwing away documents without shredding them to using his BlackBerry. And then he acts all flummoxed when the investigators make progress. Then again, this is the guy who can't fathom why the passport office has info on his daughter's distinguishing characteristics.

So it's like "The Fugitive," with none of the tension. It also lacks credibility, when one of the experts he consults informs him that Facebook was created or is operated by the CIA. Dun-dun-DUN!

For this, you left your toddler and pregnant wife, David? My wife thinks you don't deserve to own a laptop.

On the plus side, "Erasing David" sports a nice score by the great Michael Nyman ("The Piano"), but it just hammers home how supremely silly Bond's "findings" are. —Rod Lott



 
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