Power of Nightmares: The Rise of the Politics of Fear
Power of Nightmares: The Rise of the Politics of Fear (2004)

Political proverb states that a population in fear is a population that is easily controlled. In this documentary exploring the climate of fear that existed in the wake of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States,… More

Directed By:
Rated: Unrated
Running Time:
Release Date: October 20, 2004
DVD Release Date: August 5, 2008
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Critic Score: 86% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly

Adam Curtis has become the most exciting documentary filmmaker of our time. He's at once a psychologist, a historian, a journalist, a wizard of images, and a fearlessly incisive cultural detective who delves beneath the hidden myths of the modern world.

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John Anderson

Curtis' The Power of Nightmares finds that the basis of 21st century political power is fear. And for nearly three hours he makes it very hard to argue it's not.

Chris Barsanti

Problematic as it is, this is that rare kind of political film that makes a good faith effort at getting its viewers to look at the world in a different way.

Elizabeth Weitzman
New York Daily News

Though his bias is obvious, Curtis does his homework, getting the most damning evidence from interviews with the neocons themselves.

J. Hoberman
Village Voice

As partisan filmmaking it is often brilliant and sometimes hilarious.

A.O. Scott
New York Times

A sprawling, intellectually ambitious documentary about the political phenomenon usually referred to in journalistic shorthand as the war on terror.

Ken Fox
TV Guide

Curtis weaves a satisfying, explain-it-all narrative which, like any good conspiracy theory, provides considerable comfort for those who fear the world really is as unknowable as the neo-cons have warned.

Flixster Audience Score: 99% Flixster User Reviews
Stella Dallas
a 3 pt documentary film on the link between radical islamists and the neoconservative movement. fascinating stuff and mostly very plausible. all the films of… More
Alec Barniskis
I wish the argument was more fully formed in some regards. Curtis glosses over certain details he doesn't know how to really address, but he still manages… More
Stephen M
This is an excellent three-part BBC documentary which traces the origins of radical Islamism and American Neo-Conservatism to a mutual hatred of post-WWII US… More
Kyle Meisch
Everyone should see it.
Ken Stachnik
Everyone should see this