Think you know what the Federal Reserve actually does? So, explain it, smartypants. Yeah, I thought so. But after 85 minutes with I.O.U.S.A., you will have a working knowledge of United States’ fiscal policy from pre-World War I up to and including the future, which is when our government will, at the rate it’s accruing debt, completely fuck over future generations. Fortunately, filmmaker Patrick Creadon gets at this point more eloquently. It’s little surprise, considering he made a documentary about a crossword puzzle tournament—Wordplay—funny and absorbing. His latest was nominated for best documentary at Sundance and does for our economic crisis what An Inconvenient Truth did for global warming, only it does so with a lot more humor and a lot less PowerPoint. Instead of Al Gore, we have Robert Bixby, head of the Concord Coalition and lover of TAB, and David M. Walker, former U.S. Comptroller General and a genuinely good guy, on the “Wake Up, America!” tour. Interspersed with their earnest road show is a fast-paced, brilliantly structured primer that will make even you, smartypants, understand exactly how we got here and why we should, every single one of us, care.

Friday, April 24, at 6:30 p.m. at Goethe-Institut. Bob Bixby, executive director of the Concord Coalition, will be present.