Sheffield Doc/Fest Review: Flint

Once known for its automobile production, Flint, Michigan is now synonymous with public health issues, specifically the water crisis the city has been suffering since 2014. It’s a story which has hit news channels across the world. The scandal has also been covered extensively on TV and in film; most notably by Michael Moore in Fahrenheit 11/9/ It is also the subject of its own Netflix series, Flint Town, which follows the local police department.

In Anthony Baxter’s (You’ve Been Trumped/A Dangerous Game/You’ve Been Trumped Too) new documentary, Flint, he spends time on the ground getting to know some of the local residents and the ongoing political machinations.  Filmed over a period of five years, it follows events from the realisation that the city’s water supply is poisoning residents, through activism, broken promises and scientific claims and counter claims.

Flint is an enthralling and absorbing portrait of a community which has been abandoned by its leaders. There’s so much richness within this film, from the citizens of Flint fighting for the right to safe water to the scientists pushing for change. This is not your standard linear story though, so expect several twists and turns along the way. Flint is an engrossing and enlightening look at a community under siege.

Flint is available to stream as part of Sheffield Doc/Fest.

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