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You’ve been Trumped too

Michael Forbes and his mother Molly are living in the shadow of the Trump International Golf Links in Aberdeen, Scotland. When they and their neighbours refused to leave the land to make way for development, the Trump Organization initiated a campaign of intimidation and bullying, enlisting even the police to help them. You’ve Been Trumped Too is a unique look at a globally-historic election and a timeless tale of the unlikely encounter between a salt-of-the-earth Scottish family and one of the planet’s richest and most controversial figures.

Sequel

You’ve Been Trumped Too is a sequel made by the same team that made You’ve Been Trumped, which won 12 international awards when released in 2011. Incredibly, 5 years later, the situation is even worse for many of the families depicted in that film. And they blame Donald Trump.

   Duration: 79 minutes

   Spoken language: English

   Subtitles: English

   Director: Anthony Baxter

   Country: Scotland

   Year: 2016

Roxane van Iperen

Roxane is a writer, legal expert, strategist and publicist. A guest we love to have for her focus on arguments, her urge for deeper meaning and her sharp comments. Separating the shit from the bull, as she puts it.

Robert Elbertse

Robert has worked in many areas within the IT arena. He uses these skills to design new IT organizations and infrastructures. In addition he is active in local politics, what makes us curious about his ideas for the interview...

Anthony Baxter

Anthony Baxter will be in the United States in March, working on his new film about the water crisis in Flint. If anything changes in those plans, he will most likely come to Schijndel.

THURSDAY
March 9th 2017

20:00

entrance from 19:30

BALCONY
90 armchairs

23

visitors

THEATER
110 seats at tables

101

visitors

Foto’s door Foto Keetels (fotokeetels.nl)

Donald Trump is threatening to sue movie theatres, reporters or anyone who repeats the allegations made in my new film You’ve Been Trumped Too? No surprise there. He threatened the BBC with the same before the broadcast of my first film, back in 2012. But what makes Trump’s latest threat all the more terrifying is that he could soon hold the keys to the White House. Can you imagine a world where the president of the United States was throwing around lawsuits just because he objected to what was printed or broadcast about him?

Welcome to the world we could wake up to on 9 November if Trump becomes the most powerful man on the planet. And if the polls are to be believed, it’s a step closer to becoming a reality.

That’s why we as film-makers need to stand firm. We won’t be cowered by Trump’s legal threats and cyberbullying. That’s why we made You’ve Been Trumped Too available free to all voters in America on Thursday night ahead of its UK release. This is the film he doesn’t want you to see. And here’s why we think you should see it …

Ten years ago, when several residents whose homes are located on the picturesque sand dunes of Balmedie in Scotland refused to sell their land to Trump for his new luxury golf course resort, the billionaire began a campaign of bullying and intimidation that continues to this day. Most well-known among these residents is farmer Michael Forbes, whose modest croft sits right in the middle of where Trump wanted to build “the greatest golf course in the world”. Michael’s mother Molly (now aged 92) lives in a caravan across the farmyard from her son. The home has a handmade carved sign on it, reading “Paradise”. That was, until Trump arrived.

Trump’s first attempt at being a great neighbour was to go on national television and slam the state of Michael Forbes’s farm. The farm was “a slum”, and Michael “lived like a pig”, fumed Trump. How could he possibly build his hotel for millionaires if the windows were to look out over “this horrible, horrible slum”?

The hotel was part of Trump’s master plan for the Menie estate’s shifting sand dunes that would create “6,000 jobs”, see the building of 1,500 houses and the construction of a skyscraper hotel. Trump promised to get “Aberdeen booming”. His claims were lapped up by local politicians, eager to find an economic wand to wave for when North Sea oil runs dry. No problem if the residents refused to sell. Next up was his threat of eminent domain – or under UK law, compulsory purchase.

So concerned was I at the lack of scrutiny of Trump’s plan and the devastating effect it would have on people and the rare sand dunes where he wanted to build his gated golf resort that I began making my film, You’ve Been Trumped.

In the summer of 2010 I interviewed Michael Forbes on his salmon-fishing boat, and he mentioned in passing that they had no running water. Trump’s workers had apparently cut through a pipe leading from the spring that serves the Forbes’s well. The result was that Michael, his wife Sheila and Michael’s mother, Molly, were without running water. This had been going on for a week. And what had Trump done about it? Nothing, according to the Forbes.

I went immediately to speak to the man in charge of Trump’s building work at the time to get the other side of the story. He confirmed that there was nobody trying to sort the problem out. He explained they had to “assess it first” so that it “would be a jewel of a system and sustain itself. It’ll be the best water system he’s ever had”.

A short time later I was arrested along with my producer Richard Phinney, and we were thrown into an Aberdeen police cell. There we sat for hours while the police – apparently acting as a private security force for Trump – dreamed up some ludicrous charge. The charges were eventually dropped, and the police issued an apology. But still the Forbes’s water supply ran dry.

In the years that followed I went back to the Forbes’s house. I made another film in 2014 called A Dangerous Game, for which Trump granted me an on-camera interview about the residents’ plight. When I filmed that interview in early 2013, I had no idea that Molly was still without a proper working water supply. She is a private person, a former land girl (member of the Women’s Land Army) during the second world war, and used to hardship.

Throughout this extraordinary presidential campaign, countless articles have been written about the outrageous things that Donald Trump has said. But lesser known is what he has done. That’s why it’s so important for us to get You’ve Been Trumped Too out to US voters. It is a rare document of the impact on the lives of ordinary people of Trump’s actions.

Mexico-style border walls? Check. Mistreatment of women? Check. Failure to deliver on promises? Check. And as for the Forbes’s water? When Trump announced he was running for the presidency in the summer of 2015, I was dumbfounded to discover Molly was still collecting water from a nearby stream because her water supply wasn’t working “all because of Trump”. Now that was a story I couldn’t ignore.

The Irish Times (November 3th 2016), Tara Brady

Anthony Baxter’s film about 92-year-old Molly Forbes treatment at the hands of Trump shows beyond doubt the contempt he holds for “little people”.

When two policemen arrived, late at night, at the door of her Aberdeenshire lighthouse, Rohan Beyts – a grey-haired, Croc-wearing, retired social worker – naturally assumed that something terrible had happened to one of her children. Instead, she faced – and this is the right word – a trumped-up charge of urinating on sand dunes. Aghast, she insists that she has never received so much as speeding ticket in her life.

Why would taxpayers’ money and, you know, real Scottish cops, be used to terrorise a former public servant, so?

It transpires that Rohan was audacious enough to march in support of her neighbours: the Forbes. That family were the heart of this film’s sickening 2012 predecessor, You’ve Been Trumped.

Molly Forbes, aged 92, is a former land girl who sang to her cows and “kept them bonny” during the second World War. Her son Michael and his wife Sheila now run the family farm which has been without water for some five years, a period which strangely coincides with their refusal to sell to facilitate the construction of Donald Trump’s luxury golf course on a beach in Balmedie, Aberdeenshire.

Just when you thought the US Presidential campaign could not get more risible, along comes Anthony Baxter’s documentary, forged very much in the mode of early Michael Moore. In this spirit, the director keeps asking “What about 92-year-old Molly’s Water?” at Trump’s largest events. Trump responds by granting him an interview, as does Trump Jr. Neither emerge well.

Watching the Forbes family – “little people” by Donald Trump Jr’s account – leave the UK for the first time to visit this year’s Republican National Congress would alone justify the price of admission.

“This is bloody ridiculous,” eye-rolls Sheila as she wanders through T-shirt stalls, parades and stand-offs between abortion activists of different stripes; her husband concurs: “Never heard so much bullshit in all my life.”

You’ve Been Trumped Too touches on many recent flashpoints: Melania Trump’s alleged speech plagiarism, Trump’s wavering on Detroit’s brown water crisis, and his characterisation of Mexicans as rapists. Aberdeen’s finest respond by greeting his next helicopter touchdown with all the Bandera de México they can find.

But there’s nothing as condemnatory in this stirring documentary as the Donald himself. There’s something about the unforgiving repulsion in his voice when he says: “I look at Mr Forbes and the disgusting conditions in which he lives.”

Disgusting in this context means he wears a jumper, keeps spare tractor parts around the farm, and there’s some rust on the corrugated rooves of his farm buildings. It’s enough to condemn practically every farmer in Ireland and Britain. Words like ‘pigsty’ are thrown around.

Mr Baxter is to be commended on shaping a film that starts out looking like a drop in the ocean – we’re quite sure cutting off the Forbes’ water is not Trump’s sole faux pas of late – and ends by making the viewer realise that this story is the only story.

The bullying and intimidation is appalling and something rather underestimated by the David-Goliath ratio. But what’s worse is a depiction of how a small nation will bend over and send in the troops to defend some flash billionaire or corporation on the promise of thousands of jobs that never come to pass. Remind you of anyone?

Most important film of the year.