Housing prices are skyrocketing in cities worldwide. Incomes are not. The working and middle classes are getting pushed out of cities, while financial powerhouses use housing as a place to park money.
PUSH is a new documentary from award-winning director Fredrik Gertten, investigating why we can’t afford to live in our own cities anymore. We follow UN Special Rapporteur on Housing, Leilani Farha, on her quest to understand who’s getting squeezed, who’s getting rich and why housing has become one of today’s most pressing world issues?
Don’t blame my cortado.
In my colourful, immigrant hood in Malmö, Sweden, the word gentrification has always been heard. Twenty years ago I founded a group that wanted a new and better school, safer courtyards, no more crime, none of the junkie needles in our kids’ playgrounds. I soon came to understand that our struggle was creating gentrification. When we, a group of successful families, decided to remain, the prices went up. However, I still want to believe that people who want to make their part of town cooler and safer, is a positive force in society.
Both Bikes vs Cars and PUSH tell a story about cities that no longer work for the benefit of their citizens. Construction companies, private equity funds are setting the agenda through their PR and lobby and sometimes also by clear corruption. The relation between real estate, construction companies and politicians is the most corrupted relation on the planet. It makes it very hard to change anything when the all-powerful have something to lose and the home-owning middle class is partly dependent on the system. They all feel the stress. Because even if you’ve made it, your kids won’t. For me, the only answer is democracy and politics, but governments have lost much of their influence as the phantom cash is so much bigger, and faster.
The elevator pitch for the ambition of this film could be NAME THAT PUSH. We need to understand what the heck is going on to be able to talk about it. A clearer language. A deeper knowledge.
Release Year: 2019
Director: Fredrik Gertten
Producer: Margarete Jangård (WG Film)
Co-producer: Jamie Kastner, Laura Baron Kastner
Cinematography: Janice d’Avila, Iris Ng
Editor: Erik Bäfving