The final act flies viewers to the UK, where the Labour Party is accused of being antisemitic. The documentary takes aim at the soon-to-be-former Labour Party leader, Jeremy Corbyn, who didn’t take the necessary steps to get rid of the antisemitism tarnishing the Labour Party. Goldberg speaks to Tony Blair, former Prime Minister, and Labour Party leader, to completely demonize Corbyn. There is a clear lack of attention called to Corbyn’s support of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, further questioning how far Goldberg’s documentary goes to explore the contagious case of antisemitism if not all subjects are wholly scrutinized.
Viral: Antisemitism In Four Mutations is a brutally candid and well-intentioned documentary that exposes the modern faces of those embroiled in antisemitism. The tragic aftermath of the Tree of Life massacre and the Kosher supermarket shooting in Paris are explored, and they’re discussed by survivors and those in the Jewish community who mourn the people they’ve lost. The sad thing is that they’ve come to expect this kind of hatred because of their Jewish ethnicity. Sordid mentalities and conspiracies continue to be taught and revered by people and hate groups. Hate isn’t going anywhere, but we can choose to love and strive to protect all minorities from despicable individuals keen on devaluing and murdering them. It doesn’t help that politicians also have a hand in the viral trajectory of antisemitism.
“…a brutally candid and well-intentioned documentary…”
Given the significant weight of each act, there’s hardly enough time to provide a fully-fledged look at the events and people that have been, or are, victims or culprits of antisemitism. However, the film is worthy of your time and attention. The crimes implemented against the Jewish community are heartbreaking and devastating. Yet, even a belittling term can cause an immediate storm. Deborah Lipstadt is the author of “Antisemitism: Here and Now,” and she deftly encapsulates the power of words: “It starts with comments. It starts with words. And then it escalates.” Given the ubiquitous influence of social media, and how far the internet can reach an audience who are states away, words are potent, baleful, and they can send the wrong messages.
In many ways, Andrew Goldberg’s Viral: Antisemitism In Four Mutations is a global glance at antisemitism and how it can blight the political and social sphere. Antisemitism is a virus because of how quickly it can spread on the internet, and how barbaric it can be when hate morphs into physical violence. Even if the documentary isn’t able to dive deeper, given its short runtime, this is an appropriate warning that calls attention to the antisemitism that continues to linger. It also reminds us of how global abhorrence against minorities, in general, still exists. We must be aware of how our trusted political figures or social groups wield their power. And we must do more to overpower hate with love, empathy, and unity.
"…taught devilishly vile ideals and beliefs, further perpetuating the lies about Jewish people, to the point of violence."