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The Face of Anonymous – Hot Docs 2021

Commander X of the hacktivist group Anonymous tells his story in . One day novelist Ian Thornton struck up a conversation with a homeless man on the streets of Toronto, who turned out to be Christopher Mark Doyon, aka “Commander X” of the hacktivist group Anonymous. Now living in political asylum in Mexico, Doyon tells his history in activism and how he became involved with the infamous hacktivist group.

With The Face of Anonymous, filmmaker Gary Lang sheds a light on the infamous hacktivist group, who rose to prominence a decade ago and vanished just a fast. According to folks suck as Gregg Housh and Barrett Brown, there was no real founder of Anonymous, which was formed almost as a gag by users of the 4Chan message boards, as a way to strike back against Scientology for removing posts. Even the infamous use of V for Vendetta Guy Fawkes masks were solely because they were available in surplus from hobby shops. However, for better or for worse, Christopher Mark Doyon took ownership of his role in Anonymous, becoming the public face of the group in the media.

It is quite apparent while watching The Face of Anonymous that primarily subject Christopher Mark Doyon is a somewhat delusional hippie activist, who equates his time being a member of Anonymous to being Batman. Adopting the Commander X moniker, Doyon would become very public about his involvement in the group, which in some ways contributed to hacktivism becoming more…anonymous to hide from law enforcement. While it can be difficult to take its main subject seriously, The Face of Anonymous is still a documentary worth checking out.

The Face of Anonymous is now streaming as part of the 2021 Hot Docs Film Festival


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Sean Patrick Kelly
Sean Patrick Kelly
Sean Patrick Kelly is a freelance film critic and blogger based in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
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