A small but vocal campaign urging people to delete their Netflix accounts has emerged in Brazil in response to the streamer’s new documentary series based on the corruption of former socialist administrations.
The Netflix docuseries, entitled The Mechanism, is inspired by the years-long political scandal known as Operation Car Wash, which led to the impeachment of former left-wing president Dilma Rousseff and a 10-year prison sentence for her predecessor Lula da Silva.
Now several social media users are expressing their disgust at the show’s loose interpretation of events by deleting their accounts and posting about it on social media.
“The director invents facts. He doesn’t merely reproduce fake news. He has turned himself into a creator of fake news,” reads a post on Dilma Rousseff’s website.
“It would be like if a movie about the last moments of John Kennedy inserted a Lee Harvey Oswald character making accusations against the victim,” she continued. “Or a movie where Winston Churchill makes a deal with Adolf Hitler to attack the United States.”
Although the show has changed the names of individuals and companies involved in the scandal, it seems apparent that many of the characters are based on figures such as Rousseff, Lula, and Alberto Youssef, who was one of the main bankers caught up in the scandal.
One of Brazil’s most popular critics, Pablo Villaca, also wrote on his blog that the series was the final straw for him, arguing that Netflix had shown poor corporate responsibility and was unfairly demonizing Brazil’s left-wing. He wrote:
Whoever follows me on social media must have seen that I deem the launch of the series The Mechanism, by José Padilha, as tremendously irresponsible in times like ours, condemning their serious lies (like attributing to Lula the famous conversation between Romero Jucá and Sérgio Machado about “stagnating the sangria”) and his narrative manipulations right from the first episode designed to demonize the left.
In addition, upon seeing the eternal candidate Marina Silva using the death of Marielle Franco to publicize a work that she knew to be critical of the left, I was taken, I confess, by an anger that for some moments diminished my rationality considerably.
The investigation, which began in March 2014, started as a probe into money laundering and soon enveloped hundreds of politicians, officials, businessman, and other figures of influence as the true extent of the bribery emerged.
Former leftist president Lula da Silva, who was sentenced to 12 years in jail on corruption charges linked to the investigation, recently had his penultimate appeal request rejected, bringing him one step closer to jail. Should he win his appeal, da Silva intends to fight the country’s upcoming presidential elections this September.