Anthony Baxter’s exposé on the high cost of luxury golf development debuted at Hot Docs last year. It went on to screen at Sheffield, Edinburgh, Hamptons, DC’s Environmental fest, Vancouver, Reykjavik, Denver, and One World, among others.
In 2011, Baxter’s previous documentary, YOU’VE BEEN TRUMPED, drew significant press and festival attention as it chronicled billionaire Donald Trump’s concerted efforts to develop a golf course in Scotland, despite the resistance of several locals and serious environmental concerns. While revisiting this story and its protagonists – who Trump vilified in the press, but who emerged as local heroes – Baxter’s follow-up expands beyond Aberdeenshire to explore other contentious, posh golf resort developments, including another Trump foray in New Jersey, an unconnected project in Dubrovnik, Croatia, and an environmentally dodgy Las Vegas set course. Baxter also underscores the point that he’s not against the game in and of itself, profiling his golf-loving uncle, who provides some quirky moments and historical context. And, finally, if this all weren’t enough, Baxter- channelling Michael Moore – re-engages the Trumps, finally getting Donald and his son to consent to on camera interviews as a form of damage control that doesn’t quite go their way, ultimately. It’s a bit much for the somewhat too-slickly produced yet still folksy film to juggle, but Baxter still manages to make his new film accessible to viewers who haven’t seen its predecessor, while maintaining the impact of its David vs Goliath themes.