Knock Down the House is a documentary that follows four female candidates – Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Amy Vilela, Cori Bush, and Paula Jean Swearengin – who are running grassroots campaign for the House of Representative election of 2018. This documentary directed by Rachel Lears showcases the nitty-gritty side of political campaigning.
This film is really inspirational to me. I was absolutely moved by how resilient, hardworking, and caring all these four candidates are. These are the type of people that I want to be involved in politics: everyday, working-class candidates who just want what is best for the people in their state.
The film is mainly centered around Ocasio-Cortez, and I think that Paula Jean could’ve been given more screen time in the film. But Ocasio-Cortez is what makes the film entertaining and she undoubtedly has the most name recognition out of the bunch. You already know the outcome of her election, but it is interesting to see just how she got there and became a fierce Congresswoman, not afraid to stand up for herself and her beliefs.
The motivation behind these candidates running were honorable and ambitious. The film highlights their background and their reason for going into politics though they don’t really have experience in it yet. The film also shows how difficult it is to run a grassroots campaign, it’s almost impossible to compete against those who use PAC money and whose names are more well-known, but these women manage to do it.
Knock Down the House is currently available on Netflix and I give the film an A.