Saturday, September 07, 2013

"The Entrepreneur": a son documents his father's ambitious international automobile business

The Entrepreneur”, from Snag Films and Warrior Poets, is certainly a warm tribute to a son-father relationship, as filmmaker Jonathan Bricklin documents the wild ride of this father to set up Visionary Vehicles, to present American consumers with luxury imported cars a lower prices.  Malcolm had previously brought the Subaru and Yugo to the US.
Malcolm travels around the world (India, Poland, Britain) looking for a manufacturing partner until he finds Chery Motors in Wuhu China, not too far from Shanghai.   Visually, the most striking part of the film is the many scenes in Wuhu, including dinner scenes eating raw live fish (no, this is not “free fish”).  Bricklin fascinates us with his ability to negotiate with people living in a much more authoritarian culture than ours (he doesn’t need an apprenticeship from Donald Trump), using social skills (with real world, not just social media, connections) and quick bargaining strikes.   Jonathan takes us thru his father’s ups and downs, as he has to line up risk taking dealers to participate.  The film reaches a climax with a board meeting and telephone call in Hong Kong, after one last extension, and then there is a sort of antiphonal anticlimax, dealing with the downside of the People’s Republic of Capitalism.
At one point, Malcolm almost gets into a French Canadian film to be directed by Chris Le Blanc.


Jonathan says his father starts businesses (and takes on serial wives) for the journey of it.

The Snag Films article is here
The 2009 film has been made available on Amazon Instant Play ($3.99).  I could not find it on Amazon under the film title, but did so under the director.  In Internet Explorer on Windows 8 I had one issue with a popup and just simply resumed it.  But when I tried to call it directly from imdb, my default browser Chrome had some trouble with Amazon because if issues indirectly caused by Windows 8 Actio Center. The film started out in 1.37:1 aspect and switched to 1.78:1 in the middle.  I don't know why.  

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