Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Hollywood hogwash

New York Times movie reviewer A.O. Scott tries to argue that:

"Just Like Heaven," which opened last weekend to a solid $16.5 million box-office take is, in more than one sense, a movie very much in its right mind. ...The film itself provides the latest evidence that the myth of a monolithically liberal Hollywood is dead."


Scott continues:

Let's skip, for the moment, yet another argument about whether it was ever really alive. The notion that the American film industry is a hotbed of left-wing propaganda is a venerable one, and some determined demagogues will cling to it no matter what the studios do.


Scott goes on to cite the success of Mel Gibson's Passion and the popularity of Christian vocalists as evidence of a trend that Hollywood was moving to the right. Additional 'evidence' is provided by the suburban Parrs represented in the Incredibles as well as the satire Team America.

Is Scott being willfully stupid? Did he or she (no idea and not relevant) see Kingdom of Heaven? Remember the savaging of Tom Clancy's The Sum of All Fears so that Muslims wouldn't be 'stigmatized'? See the Hollywood stars lined up for Kerry and note that you can count Bush supporters on the fingers of one hand?

To see where Scott is coming from it's instructive to examine Scott's review of The Motorcycle Diaries, - a romanticized hagiography of Castro's butcher. In "On the Road with a Young Che":

Walter Salles's stirring and warm-hearted reconstruction of that long-ago voyage. Granado's companion was a 23-year-old medical student named Ernesto Guevara de la Serna, whose subsequent career as a political idol, revolutionary martyr and T-shirt icon — Che! — reflects a charismatic, mysterious glow onto his early life.
What "The Motorcycle Diaries" captures, with startling clarity and delicacy, is the quickening of Ernesto's youthful idealism, and the gradual turning of his passionate, literary nature toward an as yet unspecified form of radical commitment.
At the end of the film, after his sojourn at the leper colony has confirmed his nascent egalitarian, anti-authority impulses, Ernesto makes a birthday toast, which is also his first political speech. In it he evokes a pan-Latin American identity that transcends the arbitrary boundaries of nation and race.

Che couldn't have hired a better ghost writer.

Here's a reminder of the truth about Che Guevara. An excerpt:

He was an Argentinian revolutionary who served as Castro's primary thug. He was especially infamous for presiding over summary executions at La Cabana, the fortress that was his abattoir. He liked to administer the coup de grace, the bullet to the back of the neck. And he loved to parade people past El Paredon, the reddened wall against which so many innocents were killed. Furthermore, he established the labor-camp system in which countless citizens — dissidents, democrats, artists, homosexuals — would suffer and die. This is the Cuban gulag.

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