The Old Schoolhouse® Product & Curriculum Reviews

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Affluenza Review by Kim Kargbo

Bullfrog Films
PO Box 149
Oley, PA 19547

Affluenza is a 56-minute documentary on the epidemic of materialism and consumerism in America. The documentary is humorously done, treating the subject as a disease with symptoms and a diagnosis with recommended treatments. Exploring the problems of overconsumption, advertising schemes, and discontent, this documentary strikes hard at the problems we all wrestle with in our Western society today.

Homeschooling families could use this film in an economics lesson or just as a discussion starter on materialism and values. There were one or two questionable words mixed into the dialogue, which may offend some. There were also some Scripture verses interspersed in the documentary. The film could be an introduction to a Bible study on the Scriptural teachings on money, consumption, contentment, and so forth.

Though the film is slightly dated, as will be noticed in the hair and clothing styles, the message is timely. The content is thought provoking, particularly when you consider the impact that materialism has had on the family, community, and environment. The principle of "the American Dream" is brought into question as the filmmakers evaluate a new American dream. Families, especially those with middle or high school students, would find this film a useful resource.

Product review by Kim Kargbo, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, June 2010