Monday January 2, 2017, 24:00 on ERT2
Oncle Bernard—L’anti-leçon d’économie (Oncle Bernard—A Counter-Lesson in Economics), 2015, Canada/Spain, 79 min.
Director: Richard Brouillette
Depicted in Richard Brouillette’s Oncle Bernard – A Counter-Lesson in Economics, Bernard Maris, who wrote under the pseudonym of Uncle Bernard in his “Charlie Hebdo” column, had the mission of unmasking the professional fabricators of the economy—those who, every day, wherever we are, fill us with the same rubbish, draped in a phony pseudo-science whose goal is to disguise the mechanisms of that power which enslaves us.
The terrorism that he tirelessly denounced in the pages of “Charlie Hebdo”, in his books, or on the radio, wasn’t the same that, on a somber day in January 2015, struck his newspaper and brought his death; it was the terrorism of words, which torments us all. The one used by those in power, “who know what they’re talking about,” and who silence with utter contempt those who dare to think differently or who take the liberty of asking questions. Maris fought to denounce those crooks and intellectually arm his readers and listeners against their lies, to allow them to see through the neoliberal looking glass.
The images that you are about to see were shot on 16mm film, on Wednesday March 8, 2000, in the editorial offices of “Charlie Hebdo”, right after the weekly editorial meeting that brings together most of the newspaper’s staff. It was at such a weekly Wednesday meeting that Uncle Bernard and his colleagues were murdered. The circumstances of his death have determined the specific format of the film, which is almost unedited. Because showing Bernard Maris without varnish, in all of his strength and vulnerability, in the daily—and often loud—life of “Charlie”, is a way of paying tribute to this luminous person who, for so many years, made his readers laugh at the same time that he enlightened them.
—Richard Brouillette, film producer, director, editor, and programmer