The recent documentary craze has followed the tech world. With the rise of Bitcoin, NFTs, and decentralized digital assets, the economy shifted overnight. Creators could sell their goods and participate in resales down the line. However, when the market collapsed, many were left holding the bag. The up-and-down craze made a select few millionaires. It also pushed some towards bankruptcy. Minted provides a unique perspective, approaching the market from the POV of artists. It stands out from other documentaries that do not provide the human factor.

Over the past two decades, the creation and implementation of the blockchain opened new avenues. It provided a possibility for digital currency, asset collection, and other exchanges. While the technology provided a method of ownership for digital assets, it had practical uses away from asset collection. However, tracking ownership soon became its primary purpose. Soon, ho cryptocurrencies and non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, began trading. Artists could create a piece, “mint it,” and then sell it online. This allowed global participation in its sale, and with blockchain, built-in residuals to the artist each time it sold.

Over the course of Minted, more than a dozen artists step into the spotlight. Some are traditional tech bros, while others come from the corners of the world. The most famous of the NFT artists is Beeple, whose “Everydays” NFT sold for $69 million. The sale turned Beeple into a blockchain hero and launched the popularity of a highly speculative market.

Minted’s most interesting interviews stem from smaller artists. Karina Matahari stands out for the life-changing opportunity NFTs provided her. The Cuban artist had been censored for her work, making it hard to sell and limiting her creative freedom. Not only could she be more political work on NFT, but she earned enough money to move to Spain.

Additionally, rap artist Latashá uses the platform NFTs provided her. She hosts events to help use NFTs and Blockchain as an equalizer for people of color. Latashá finds a core fanbase that will buy her work and music videos, ensuring she can continue creating in her own way. She admits during Minted she still experiences racism within the digital community. However, her participation and contribution to the new culture provides stability.

While some artists found success, others struggled. Director Nicholas Bruckman wisely dives into the get-rich-quick schemes that began. Knock-offs of the “Bored Ape” craze made millions. When copycats steal the style of an artist, they created hundreds of counterfeit pieces bearing her name. Celebrities began launching NFTs and never followed through on their promises. It became a scheme for some, while high speculators won and lost thousands of dollars in minutes. The bubble crash became inevitable, but Bruckman rightly points out this still led to financial disaster for many.

This personal touch explores the darker side of the NFT market. Yet most importantly, Minted never ignores the potential bounce back. While the medium undeniably burned some creators, the dot-com bubble once did the same. Bruckman and his team do not throw the baby out with the bath water but instead, remind us that the future of NFTs is still very much alive.

Alan’s Rating: 7/10

What do you think of Minted? Let us know in the comments below. Catch Minted at Tribeca 2023.

Check out our reviews and pieces from the 2023 Tribeca Film Festival here!

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