The documentary is a beautiful representation of what politics could be like in an ideal environment. For ninety-six minutes we follow Jón Gnarr, an Icelandic comedian fed up of the dull, overpaid fools that are running his country into the ground with their selfish ways and thoughtless, greedy actions. He decides, admittedly quite naively, to run for the post of Mayor of Reykjavík in order to bring the power back to the people. This was during the time where the economic crisis was at its height and everyone was pointing the finger towards Iceland.
Iceland is a very small country (currently 319000 inhabitants) and is the perfect place to perform sociological experiments such as this, for not only will there be visibly quicker results (due to a small number of people), but also the citizens are a strong, hardy bunch that tend to embrace change a little more readily than their European neighbours.
I found watching Gnarr incredibly moving in light of Margaret Thatcher’s recent death and the media’s bombardment of information pertaining to our political past. I observed how the stagnant views of the traditional Icelandic parties clashed with Gnarr’s relaxed, honest and confident approach to mayoral duties with a mixture of awe, fear and jealousy. The UK will never be a country to embrace such significant change, and our voting system would never allow such a thing to occur even if our citizens desired it. Unfortunately the USA has even less of a chance of refreshing its outlook on how its empire is run and will continue to deteriorate as a nation, evidence of which can be found within the statistics regarding child welfare across the globe. If the USA can’t even keep the welfare of its youth in high regard, what hope is there of any other significant change?
I hope as many people as possible get the chance to view this documentary and compare it to their own situation. Instead of riots, vile Facebook messages and silly little blog posts like this one, we need a Jón Gnarr to truly provide us with change. We need a leader.
Our society has been festering ever since Thatcher headed our parliament, and her death has highlighted a desperate need for a spring clean.
[This documentary can also be viewed on YouTube by clicking here]