It’s regretful, as Indiewire‘s Todd McCarthy has noted, that Charles Ferguson‘s Inside Job, which yesterday was named named the best film of the Cannes Film Festival in an Indiewire poll of 19 critics/columnists, wasn’t included in the competition.

“Given the dearth of strong competing entries as well as the scarcity of American pictures this year, it would have been a great boost both to Cannes and the film” to have given it a shot at the Palme d’Or, McCarthy notes. “If subject matter is part of the criterion by which documentaries are judged, then few others could be more worthy.

“There could not be a film more timely or relevant to why the world is in the shape it’s in right now than this meticulously constructed analysis of the financial mess of the past couple of years. It’s an arcane and complicated subject, but one that Ferguson, whose longstanding ties to the financial world enabled him to enlist so many key players to explain things, does an outstanding job in laying out so that lay viewers can generally follow it.

“Due to be released by Sony Classics in the fall, the film will certainly play the major festivals and be made as widely available as possible, even if Joe Public will predictably sidestep this golden opportunity to learn something pertinent in favor of watching almost anything else.

“Stylistically, Inside Job surprised me only by Ferguson’s occasional use of the sort of hyped-up techniques and ‘urgent’ music that he so studiously avoided in No End in Sight. It’s agit-prop, after a fashion, in the way the previous film was not, a call for action on the part of the citizenry and for reform from a government he rightly sees as having rewarded the culprits largely responsible for the mess in the first place.”