Alex Gibney has proven himself a master of investigative documentaries, from the thrilling Scientology exposé Going Clear to his look at massive corporate scandal Enron, he has a knack for convincing smart people to go on the record with sensitive information and organizing that info into a compelling narrative. And he’s picked a doozy for his new target: a documentary on the White House’s pandemic failures. Totally Under Control was filmed in secret over the last few months in an attempt to answer one question: why did the U.S. fail so spectacularly at containing COVID-19?
To answer, Gibney spoke with scientists, medical professionals and government officials who peel back the curtain on what could have, should have and then actually did happen. You can see the trailer above (please note, one expert has a strong choice of words for the handling of COVID-19.)
Here’s the official synopsis:
“Where did we go wrong? As the presidential election nears, Americans are increasingly enraged by a lack of clear leadership, endemic political corruption and left to wonder how did the wealthiest and most powerful country in the world manage to fail so thoroughly in its response to a global pandemic? Academy Award-winning filmmaker Alex Gibney, directing with Ophelia Harutyunyan and Suzanne Hillinger, interrogates this question and its devastating implications in Totally Under Control. With damning testimony from public health officials and hard investigative reporting, Gibney exposes a system-wide collapse caused by a profound dereliction of presidential leadership.”
Totally Under Control will be available on-demand on October 13 and on Hulu the week after.