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Detroit: The Bankruptcy of a Symbol by Derouet, Thierry


Detroit, once called the Paris of the mid-west, used to be the international symbol of prosperity made possible by the miracles of mass production . Since the 60-ies its rapidly declining car industry has left the city devastated creating a mass emigration and many financial and social problems. In the present the old and new inhabitants use their ingenuity to make the rundown city appealing again.

Social Interest

From a bustling city to something that resembles a ghost town. This documentary shows how the people in Detroit are adapting to the new situation. Because of the decline of work in the car factories, other means of income had to be generated. Grass root projects are popping up all around town and national and foreign entrepreneurs move to the city to create a new economy based on locality, participation and sustainability.

Political Relevance

The story of Detroit is the story of the initial success and inevitable decline of excessive capitalism. Therefor it serves as a warning for other cities in the United States and other western countries to not fully rely on multinational capital, but to also emphasize the importance of bottom-up grassroot projects.

Historic Interest

The first T-Ford , Motown music , the beautiful buildings, Detroit has a rich history. The documentary describes its history in utmost detail. From the beginning of the century when Henry Ford started producing his T-Ford through the golden era of mass-production to the decline of the glorious city and all the economic and social problems that followed. As an extra point of interest: the former glory of the now run down buildings is captured through the eyes of photographers.

Derouet, Thierry
Copyright Holder
Java Films SARL
52 min.
Year of release

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