Amazon HQ2 video basically leaves out Windsor (con't)

In fact, Windsor’s only starring role – if it can be called that – comes late in the video at the 2.55 mark when, almost as an after thought, the voice of the narrator – Detroit poet Jessica Care Moore – says, “and a whole other country is just a bridge away.”

The video shows the Ambassador Bridge and part of Windsor in the background but it’s one of only a few shots that capture just snippets of Windsor, and otherwise not intentionally.

The video was commissioned by the bid committee which includes only one Canadian member – Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens – among a power list of 60 Detroit movers and shakers.

Admittedly that’s one Canadian in a sea of Americans but someone who has some clout.

The video, by Detroit director Stephen McGee, includes a lot of fast moving overhead helicopter shots and quick cutaways showing various dimensions of a dynamic Motown, from factories to vibrant neighbourhoods.

It opens almost at the Windsor shoreline as the copter flies quickly over the Detroit River toward Belle Isle and the Detroit riverfront.

It then cuts to a variety of workers and workplaces - which is a substantial part of the video – showing how Detroit’s legacy industrial skills are merging with the high-tech sector.

The poetic, almost rap sounding voiceover has verses like “to be an innovator means you may stumble, you may fall, but relentless, you will move forward” and “if this is home you own the pearl, if you move here you move the world.”

The video is relentless Detroit-focused, referring to “Detroiters” and, with a scene of the international fall marathon, “Detroit is the starting line of the world imagination.”

There is indirect reference to Canada in a line that describes Detroit as “an international hub full of vitality.”

The film cuts to the scenic rural areas but only of Michigan, saying a “state full of 230 ft. pine trees” and showing a paddler on a vast lake.

Point Pelee enthusiasts might be miffed that the video calls Michigan the summer destination of the Monarch butterfly.

Point Pelee is also renowned as a stopover for the butterflies as the most southern Canadian land point, so they have less water to cover flying across Lake Erie.

Another video shot shows a Detroit – Windsor connection, though it’s not explicit, is of a freighter steaming towards the Ambassador Bridge, and both cities’ riverfronts are shown.

But then the camera swings from over the top of one of the bridge’s towers to, again, downtown Detroit, not Windsor.

The video also shows “diverse cultural communities” and there is a scene of Mexicantown dancers in costume, but no reference to the Canadian identity.

The film, Move Here Move the World, can be viewed on YouTube.

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