In a quasi-satirical response to the American Idol and Canadian Idol phenomena, activists in Toronto invented their own competition: "City Idol." In this unofficial series of political elections, "mock" candidates staged a fake run for office, wherein they were asked to author and deliver speeches, engage in debates, stage press hearings, and respond to local crises. This resulted, of course, in one of the most lively, impassioned, and intelligent debates about the most effective methods for social change in Ontario's largest city. With his nonfiction film City Idol, documentarian Arturo Perez Torres provides an inside, telling glimpse of these events, suggesting that the most effective catalysts of urban improvement may exist on the grassroots level.
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