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Film Synopsis

“We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists” is a documentary that takes us inside the world of Anonymous, the radical “hacktivist” collective that has redefined civil disobedience for the digital age. The film explores the historical roots of early hacktivist groups like Cult of the Dead Cow and Electronic Disturbance Theater and then follows Anonymous from 4chan to a full-blown movement with a global reach, one of the most transformative of our time.

Festivals and Awards

 

Reviews

March 20, 2012
“We Are Legion: SXSW Review” by John DeFore

Quote: “Strong, entertaining portrait of a hard-to-pin-down online phenomenon.”

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July 10, 2012

“We Are Legion” The Story of the Hackitivists” by Eddie Cockrell

Quote: “We are Legion: The Story of The Hacktivists,” and that gleeful sense of anarchic revolution is at the heart of this insurrectionist primer examining such recent new media phenomena as the loose online collective known as Anonymous, 4chan and the Occupy movement.”

http://www.variety.com/review/VE1117947882/

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October 18, 2012

“Keyboard Activists in the Online Universe: ‘We Are Legion,’ on Computer Hacker-Activists,” by Nicolas Rapold

Quote: “The film is most illuminating in showing how democratic practice can still find a new voice and innovative means with each generation. The fascinating efforts of Anonymous can be messy, but so are many freedoms when asserted so boldly.”

http://movies.nytimes.com/2012/10/19/movies/we-are-legion-on-computer-hacker-activists.html?_r=1&

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October 19, 2012

“Review: ‘We Are Legion’ goes behind the masks,” by Robert Abele

Quote: “as a tale of digital power-tripping both exhilarating and terrifying, “We Are Legion” stands as a useful 21st century narrative.”

http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/movies/moviesnow/la-et-mn-we-are-legion-capsule-20121020,0,7210965.story 

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October 17, 2012

“Hackers Evolve in We Are Legion,” by Michelle Orange

Quote: “Brian Knappenberger’s fascinating, incisive social history of the online network known as Anonymous…”

http://www.villagevoice.com/2012-10-17/film/hackers-evolve-in-we-are-legion/

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October 16, 2012

“New Movies in Theaters,” IMDB The Buzz

Quote: “The end of 2012 is getting crowded with potential Best Documentary Oscar contenders, including Brian Knappenberger’s look into the ideologies and actions of the Anonymous collective, a group of computer hackers who represent a new form of 21st century direct-action activism. I wonder if the Academy is considering what might happen to their websites and event if the documentary isn’t nominated? Also, we love it when films that got their start at Slamdance find their way into theaters.”

http://www.imdb.com/movies-in-theaters/

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October 18, 2012

“Review: We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists,” by Gina Hall

Quote: “The film blurs the line between these activists’ online anonymity and their real world identity and makes you want to join the cause.”

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/gina-hall/we-are-legion-film_b_1975493.html

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January 22, 2012

“Anonymous Documentary We Are Legion Peels Back Hacktivist Group’s History” by Angela Watercutter

Quote:”The documentary goes deep. Speaking with current and former Anonymous participants — as well as Wired writers Ryan Singel and Steven Levy — Knappenberger gives a thorough chronological account of Anonymous’ exploits, up to the group’s current place at the forefront of online disobedience.”

http://www.wired.com/underwire/2012/01/we-are-legion-documentary/

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Feb 23, 2012

“Nordling’s Daily SXSW Preview, Day 4! MARLEY! JUST LIKE BEING THERE! WE ARE LEGION: THE STORY OF THE HACKTIVISTS!” by Nordling

Quote: “I ain’t gonna lie; I’m terrified of groups like Anonymous and LulzSec.  I respect and fear them – they’ve become something of the boogeymen of the Internet.”   “Sure to be controversial, WE ARE LEGION will be talked about throughout the fest, of that I’m certain.”

http://www.aintitcool.com/node/53775

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 eFilmCritic.com
March 8, 2012

“Films You Will Want to See (2012 SXSW Edition)” by Erik Childress

Quote: “We Are Legion capably draws us into the debate, not by sympathizing with those willfully (if somewhat ignorantly) breaking the law but presenting both sides of the tale that our nightly news reports often skew in one direction.”

http://www.efilmcritic.com/feature.php?feature=3367

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AustinChronicle.com
March 9, 2012

“Attack of the Cybermen” by Marc Savlov.

Quote: “Brian Knappenberger’s We Are Legion: The Rise of the Hacktivists is a definitive, finely calibrated documentary on what until a few years ago was more or less a semisecret noncollective born of Chris “moot” Pool’s 4Chan site.”

http://www.austinchronicle.com/screens/2012-03-09/attack-of-the-cybermen/

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Turnstylenews.com
March 9, 2012

“The Spot: We Are Legion” by Noah J Nelson.

Quote: “The documentary “We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktavists” hits the SXSW film festival this week. Director Brian Knappenberger’s film lays out the origin of the hacker collective Anonymous with insight and wit.”

http://turnstylenews.com/2012/03/09/the-spot-we-are-legion/

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HollywoodJesus.com
March 11 2012

“We Are Legion, The Raid: Redemption, and Modus Anomalie” by Ed Travis

Quote: “I found myself inspired and smiling at the end of this film, having entered a secret world that I never knew anything about and walking away better informed and highly entertained.”

http://live.hollywoodjesus.com/?p=9776

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Lostinreviews.com
March 11, 2012

“SXSW 2012 Film: We Are Legion” by Richard

Quote: “We Are Legion exists at the exact moment in time that it needs to exist. Our generation not only needs this documentary as an official photograph of this important movement, but as a way to get that message out to people who may not actually know anything about Anonymous. This is an absolute must see film. Do whatever you can to see it. So now I’ll leave you with the movement’s personal motto: “We are anonymous. We are legion. We do not forgive. We do not forget. Expect us.” Expect them, indeed.”

http://lostinreviews.com/2012/03/sxsw-we-are-legion/

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MovieCriticAustin.blogspot.com
March 11, 2012

“We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists” by PK81

Quote: “While hoping this doesn’t land me on a government watch list or the Church of Scientologists hit list, I have to say I really enjoyed this movie. Its a social commentary and an important one that we all have to answer in this digital age. We need to as individuals discover to what extreme do we want protection on the internet and then move to change the government and laws that define it. Anyone who enjoys documentaries, technology, or current affairs, I recommend this movie.”

http://moviecriticaustin.blogspot.com/2012/03/we-are-legion-story-of-hacktivists.html

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Deathandtaxesmag.com
March 12, 2012

“Anonymous documentary ‘We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists’ premieres at SXSW” By DJ Pangburn

Quote: “Hopefully, “We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists,” directed by Brian Knappenberger, will go some way in checking the distortion from the federal politicians and their benefactors on Wall Street.”

http://www.deathandtaxesmag.com/180170/anonymous-documentary-we-are-legion-the-story-of-the-hacktivists-premieres-at-sxsw/

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Badassdigest.com
March 14, 2012

“SXSW Movie Review: WE ARE LEGION: THE STORY OF THE HACKTIVISTS” by Devin Faraci

Quote: “We Are Legion is incredibly inspiring. We are living in a strange, exciting moment in history when astonishing change is happening, and that change is coming from truly unexpected quarters.”

http://badassdigest.com/2012/03/14/sxsw-movie-review-we-are-legion-the-story-of-the-hacktivists/

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Twitchfilm.com
March 14, 2012

“2012 Review: WE ARE LEGION: THE STORY OF HACKTIVISTS” by Scott Weinberg.

Quote: “Either way, the new documentary We Are Legion: The Story of Hacktivists is something you’ll want to see. Best of all, for those (like me) who knew next to nothing about “Anonymous” before he / she / they hit the newspapers, this fast-paced and surprisingly funny film will give you a quick primer on Hacking 101.”

http://twitchfilm.com/reviews/2012/03/sxsw-2012-review-we-are-legion-the-story-of-hacktivists.php

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Jason-Bailey.com
March 14, 2012

“#SXSW Review: “We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists”" by Jason Bailey.

Quote: “We Are Legion is an impassioned film—its energy is electrifying, and if its rousing closing is not a direct call to action, it is at the very least an endorsement.”

http://www.jason-bailey.com/2012/03/sxsw-review-we-are-legion-story-of.html

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indiewire.com
March 15, 2012

“Indiewire’s 12 Favorite Moments from SXSW 2012″ by Bryce Renninger.

Quote: “”We are Legion” is a nerd spectator sport. Watching it with the tech geek-heavy crowd at SXSW was an experience unto itself. The audience howled as HBGary CEO Aaron Barr attempted to explain his unethical attempt to defraud Julian Assange and Wikileaks (a plan uncovered by members of Anonymous), applauded several noble hacks against the powers that be, and cheered on the “thousands” of virgins that lost their virginity when activist embodied itself IRL (in real life) at Anonymous’s 2008 protests against the Church of Scientology.”

http://www.indiewire.com/article/indiewires-12-favorite-moments-from-sxsw-2012#

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Newsinfilm.com
March 15, 2012

“SXSW: We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists” by Jeff Leins.

Quote: “We Are Legion is equally important and timely film, a fair representation of what is happening now in civil disobedience worldwide, as the Internet becomes a powerful tool in fringe assemblies like Occupy.”

http://www.newsinfilm.com/review/sxsw-movie-review-we-are-legion-the-story-of-hacktivists/

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CanadianInterntionalCouncil.org
May 4, 2012

“Brian Knappenberger on Anonymous, Scientology, and Freedom” by Anouk Dey

Quote: “There was Ghandi. Now there is Anonymous. OpenCanada talked to Brian Knappenberger, director of We are Legion: The Story of Hacktivists, about why the group that pranked the Church of Scientology  is “the civil disobedience group of our time.”

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The Little Red Umbrella
May 5, 2012

“Hot Docs: We Are Legion,” by Adam Bunch.

Quote: “As We Are Legion makes clear, the battles between online activists and the powers that be are only just getting started.”

http://www.littleredumbrella.com/2012/05/hot-docs-2012-we-are-legion.html

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ForgeToday.com
June 15, 2012

“Doc/Fest: We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists” by Dan Meier.

Quote: “We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists is an important documentary which narrates a very recent history that has previously been largely ignored, while always remaining entertaining, exciting, funny and even slightly terrifying.”

http://forgetoday.com/fuse/docfest-we-are-legion-the-story-of-the-hacktivists/

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Washingtonian.com
June 15, 2012

“Silverdocs Reviews: “We are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists,” “China Heavyweight,” and “The Revisionaries” by Washingtonian Staff

Quote: “To the news-consuming public, “Anonymous” is a dangerous group of Internet hotheads who unleash online attacks against any company or government that pisses them off. Back in 2010, the loose-knit group made headlines for disabling the websites of PayPal, MasterCard, and Visa in retaliation for the companies’ decision to stop processing donations to WikiLeaks. But in Brian Knappenberger’s fascinating new documentary, We are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists, members of Anonymous aren’t cyber bullies; they’re heroes.”

http://www.washingtonian.com/blogs/afterhours/film/silverdocs-reviews-we-are-legion-the-story-of-the-hacktivists-china-heavyweight-and-the-revisionarie.php

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Brightestyoungthings.com
June 18, 2012

“We Are Legion” by Jeff Spross

Quote: “There are a lot of good things that can be said about We Are Legion, the new documentary about the internet “hacktivist” group known as “Anonymous”, but the best aspect is how it balances its affinity for Anonymous with an honest investigation of this process.”

http://www.brightestyoungthings.com/articles/silverdocs-2012-byt-preview.htm

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DCist.com
June 21, 2012

“Today at Silverdocs: Ai Weiwei, George Plimpton, Detroit and a Penis Museum” by Benjamin R. Freed

Quote: “In We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists, Brian Knappenberger tracks the latter group’s evolution, from its humble beginnings as something of a no-holes-barred locker-room clique on 4Chan to a cohort capable of shuttering opponents’ websites with coordinated cyberattacks.”

http://dcist.com/2012/06/today_at_silverdocs.php#photo-2

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NBCWashington.com
June 22, 2012

“Your SILVERDOCS Weekend Preview” by Jessica JohnsonQuote: “Initially regarded as pranksters, Anonymous has evolved into a legit band of internationally recognized, Guy Fawkes-faced protesters.”

http://www.nbcwashington.com/the-scene/events/SILVERDOCS-2012-Weekend-Preview.html

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BillsMovieReviews.blogspot.com
June 25, 2012

“We Are Legion” tells the story of Anonymous by Bill Boushka.

Quote:  ”This is a gripping, compelling, even monumental documentary. It tells a real story and maintains objectivity, airing all sides. But individually, the “characters” remain likable.”

http://billsmoviereviews.blogspot.com/2012/06/we-are-legion-tells-story-of-anonymous.html

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Jayberg.blogspot.com
June 25, 2012

“2012 SILVERDOCS Film Festival-June 18 through 24″  by Jay Berg.

Quote: “ Fabulous interviews with Anonymous members (some hidden behind their signature Guy Fawkes masks), frantic editing, and an effective non-stop soundtrack will keep you fascinated in this important story of our times. ”

http://jayberg.blogspot.com/2012/06/2012-silverdocs-film-festival-june-18.html

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Indiepixfilms.com
June 26, 2012

“Silverdocs Recap: “We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists” by Wes

Quote: “We Are Legion chose its genre well: the documentary lens is perfect for dissecting exactly what changed the hacktivism movement into such a politically aware vehicle that drove its way into the center of a movement as large as a regime change in Egypt.”

http://blog.indiepixfilms.com/featured/silverdocs-recap-we-are-legion-story-of-the-hacktivists/

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The AU Review

September 24, 2012

“Film Review: Antenna Documentary Film Festival (Sydney) 2012: We Are Legion (CTC),” by Natalie SalvoQuote: “Anonymous is itself a rather strange beast and We Are Legion reflects and captures most of this. The documentary is also entertaining, fast moving and at times even funny.”
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ThirdCoast Digest

September 29, 2012

“‘We Are Legion’: Anonymous and the new era of activism,” by Ryan Findley

Quote: “There is certain to be something in this film that startles you, regardless of your opinion on Anonymous.”

http://thirdcoastdigest.com/2012/09/we-are-legion-anonymous-and-the-new-era-of-activism/

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About.com
October 8, 2012

“We Are Legion – Movie Review - 2012,” by Jennifer Merin

Quote: “this documentary is one to be reckoned with”

http://documentaries.about.com/od/revie2/fr/We-Are-Legion-Movie-Review-2012.htm

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The Charlatan: Carleton University’s Independent Weekly
October 10, 2012

“Film Review: We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists,” by David Kool

Quote: “If there is one idea that Anonymous members can agree on, it is a universal notion of sticking it to the man.”

http://www.charlatan.ca/2012/10/film-review-we-are-legion-the-story-of-the-hacktivists/

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CinemaBeach.com
October 12, 2012

“‘We Are Legion’ aims to inform and inspire in a digital age,” by Bryan Thompson

Quote: “A smart, funny, fascinating and often inspiring film, We Are Legion is compelling enough a history lesson that someone who is less tech savvy can instantly be sucked into the tale of pranksters turned politicos…”

http://www.cinemabeach.com/features/2012/10/review-we-are-legion/#more-2056

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NewsBlaze.com
October 13, 2012

“We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists Movie Review,” by Prairie Miller

Quote: “…most provocative about We Are Legion, would have to be the online communique networking in pursuit of information liberation and global justice that precipitated the Occupy movements and Middle Eastern uprisings…”

http://newsblaze.com/story/20121013154959mill.nb/topstory.html 
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The McGill Tribune
October 16, 2012

“Lolcats and revolutions: the faceless future of hacktivism,” by Illia Blinderman

Quote: “We Are Legion channels the furious energy that simmers beneath Anonymous’ masks, their rebellious nature, and their acute sense of injustice…”

http://mcgilltribune.com/?p=16362

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The Montreal Gazette
October 17, 2012

“Review: We Are Legion a primer on hacktivists,” by Bill Brownstein

Quote: “The documentary, We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists, is as close to an Anonymous primer as we have yet to see. It is both illuminating and transfixing.”

http://www.montrealgazette.com/life/Movie+review+Legion+primer+hacktivists/7409177/story.html

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Yahoo! Entertainment
October 19, 2012

“‘We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists” Film Review: A New Type of Civil Disobedience,” by Lori Huck

Quote: “Whichever side of the keyboard viewers are on, Knappenberger captures intelligent, at times funny, and impassioned interviewees as they explain their powerful hacktivist world. It’s a fascinating new take on the 21st Century technological role of civil disobedience or tech sit-ins.”

http://voices.yahoo.com/we-legion-story-hacktivists-film-review-11830596.html?cat=40 

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Canadian Dimension

October 23, 2012

“We are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists,” by Louis Pryecht

Quote: “When so many gray-haired veterans of the left fret over when “fresh blood” will arrive, We are Legion makes it clear that help is on the way even if it does not exactly conform to past expectations.”

http://canadiandimension.com/articles/5012/

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October 24, 2012

“We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists Movie Review,” by Brent Simon

Quote: “You may think you know about Anonymous, the decentralized online collective who have merrily pranked and disrupted high-level corporate and governmental websites, and gone to war with Scientology to boot. You don’t, proves Brian Knappenberger’s wildly new engaging documentary, “We Are Legion: The Story of Hacktivists.”

http://www.shockya.com/news/2012/10/24/we-are-legion-the-story-of-hacktivists-movie-review/

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The Daily Athenaeum
October 24, 2012

“Anonymity has a name  in new film,” by Madeline Carey

Quote: “While you were posting pictures of your dinner at Olive Garden to Instagram and tweeting about your roommate’s boyfriend, Anonymous was creating anarchy and a new age of revolution.”

http://www.thedaonline.com/a-e/anonymity-has-a-name-in-new-film-1.2935377#.UIggrXguN_0

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Geekadelphia
October 24, 2012

“The Philadelphia Film Fest: We Are Legion [Review],” by Dan Tabor

Quote: “If you have ever been curious about the hactivist collective Anonymous or hacktivism in general, I can’t suggest this documentary enough… I have to rate We Are Legion at over 9000!

http://geekadelphia.com/2012/10/24/the-philadelphia-film-fest-we-are-legion-review/

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Front Row Monthly
October 24, 2012

“‘We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists’ Scores a 94,” by Chris Hill

Quote: “Don’t be fooled by their age or their Guy Fawkes masks, the members of Anonymous are some pretty smart people and that makes them pretty scary. For that, this should be required viewing.”

http://frontrowmonthly.com/?p=10728

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Winnipeg Free Press
November 2, 2012

“With great web power comes great web responsibility,” by Randall King

Quote: “We Are Legion forcefully demonstrates how some kid net-surfing in his basement could be a force for good.”

http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/arts-and-life/entertainment/movies/with-great-web-power-comes-great-web-responsibility-176914161.html 

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Movie Habit
November 1, 2012

“We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists,” by Marty Mapes

Quote: “As an information-industry professional who follow the news, I found We Are Legion enlightening and interesting.”

http://www.moviehabit.com/review.php?story=wea_ka12

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O.Canada.com
November 9, 2012

“A new documentary probes the murky world of Anonymous,” by Michael D. Reid

Quote: “Knappenberger, a former Frontline producer, effectively melds striking footage and commentary from scholars and various “Anons” – from masked vigilantes with distorted voices to the likes of Mercedes Renee Haefer, an “Internet denizen” arrested for her alleged involvement in Operation Payback. It neatly puts the loose-knit network’s existence into historical perspective.”

http://o.canada.com/2012/11/09/a-new-documentary-probes-the-murky-world-of-anonymous/

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Totes Max
November 8, 2012

“‘We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists’ Review Like Impressions,” by Totes Max

Quote: “It’s fresh in feel, and synonymous with post-modern web culture that is lurching towards sophisticated design at the expense of geek cliches.”

http://totesmax.com/we-are-legion-the-story-of-the-hacktivists-review-like-impressions/ 

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The Atlantic
November 13, 2012

“‘We Are Legion’: How Anonymous Become a Global Political Force,” by Luke Allnut

Quote: “The film is particularly good on how Anonymous became politicized, how the movement (for want of a better word) went from pranking to taking on the Scientologists through to supporting WikiLeaks and helping out Tunisian revolutionaries. There is plenty of nuance here and the film rightly portrays Anonymous as a multifaceted and diverse movement that’s hard to pin down…”

http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2012/11/we-are-legion-how-anonymous-become-a-global-political-force/265154/

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Open the Fridge
November 26, 2012

“Review: We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists [Monday Movie],” by Dwight Tejano

Quote: “…this film showcases the amazing power of the demos in democracy – how the people can find power at the click of a mouse. As long as you have an internet connection, it didn’t matter whether you had wealth or status — you too could fight for what’s right. ”

http://www.openthefridge.net/blog/2012/11/26/review-we-are-legion-the-story-of-the-hacktivists-movie-mond.html

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Down to Earth
December 15, 2012

“Hacker – good and bad,” by Satyashree Banerjee

Quote: “It has thrown sufficient light on modern day political phenomenon and is sure to provoke a debate… Highly recommended.”

http://www.downtoearth.org.in/content/hackers-good-and-bad

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