March 17, 2006

"P" For Paranoid

There's been a lot of buzz generated by today's release of "V For Vendetta", the latest offering from the Wachowski Brothers (who managed to take a very cool "The Matrix" and turn it into a bucket of crap with its subsequent tedious sequels).

For those who don't know much about it, the preview makes it look pretty interesting. But before you plop down your $9 to make sure you're not the only one you know who hasn't seen it, you should be mindful that this film is more than just a heroic take on terrorism and anarchy. It's essentially a Left-wing paranoid fantasy that goes after the subject of fear-mongering by doing exactly that.

In an earlier post I highlighted this early review from the Conservative film blog, Libertas. It's worth linking again. Read the whole thing.

It's you're time and money, but just be aware of what you're paying to see.

Update: 11:45am
Debbie Schlussel weighes in to point out all of the Left's favorite screeds that are present in the film.

UPDATE: 3/21/06 9:30AM
Some people have called making this film an act of courage. Bah! Mark My Words takes a look at this claim.

According to Box Office Mojo, although it was the number one movie this past weekend, it only pulled in $25 million. And as far as opening weekends go, that's a little below average for a "comic book" film. It's just a bit more than the opening weekends for such stinkers as "Hellboy" and "The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen" but less than "Sin City" and "Blade II". On the all-time rankings for opening weekends it ranked 201 just behind "Big Momma's House".

It will be interesting to see what the effect of word-of-mouth will have in next couple of weeks.

Posted by: Gary at 09:01 AM | Comments (6) | Add Comment
Post contains 302 words, total size 2 kb.

1 Showtime/HBO ... 18 months. I'll wait.

Posted by: mdmhvonpa at March 17, 2006 09:56 AM (axVEU)

2 So does Debbie threaten to sue anybody?

Posted by: rightwingprof at March 17, 2006 04:26 PM (/IE5Q)

3 How come, when the left says stupid things like "one man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter" and "blowing up buildings can have meaning" they always seem to forget Timothy McVeigh.

Posted by: Grayson at March 18, 2006 03:59 PM (3Vh45)

4 I heard Michael Medved tear into it this past week. He also slammed Natalie Portman for some comments she had made, which he felt were ignorant.

Posted by: Wordsmith at March 18, 2006 08:54 PM (nrGCx)

5 I have read "The Road Warrior's" review and I found it illogical and hypocritical. The author describes the movie as "a paranoid, left-wing fever dream of what America is here and now". Sadly, he gets it all wrong. I see nothing paranoid about a movie which has as one of its themes the question of how totalitarianism takes hold in a country, how it is maintained and how it can be overcome. Furthermore, as a Libertarian I fail to see how there is anything overtly "left-wing" in the movie. Labeling it a "left-wing fever dream" is just a typical conservative smear tactic used to avoid having to respond to the ideas presented in the movie. Finally, this is not a movie about "what America is here and now" (which is only that reviewer's own paranoia talking), but it is a cautionary tale about what America could become if things proceed on their current course. Some people, "The Road Warrior" included, seem to be in such a habit of defending the State that they nearly go as far as to defend the totalitarian government V fights against in “V for Vendetta”. Take a few quotes from "The Road Warrior's" review as examples: "Needless to say, this is one misguided, naive film that is everything it accuses the government within the film of being: fear mongering, deceitful, hateful, and propagandistic". So by choosing to use the word "accuses" does he mean to imply that maybe the government in the film isn't those things. Given the tone, one could be forgiven for believing the reviewer is subtly defending the government in the film. Why not say "everything the government in the film was" instead of "everything it accuses the government within the film of being", huh? Here is another example, "The irony, also seemingly lost on the filmmakers, is that the end of the film reveals that the government’s fear was, um, right." Again, sounds almost like he is defending the totalitarian government in the film. Never mind the fact that it wasn't the government's "fear" that the parliament building might be blown up. If he had paid any attention to the movie he might have noticed that the government "knew" that V would blow up the parliament building since they knew (and covered up) the fact that V had blown up the first building. V had promised to blow up the Parliament building--a fact the government attempted to conceal. The government merely manipulated the facts in such a way as to maintain control of the people. So where exactly is this so called "irony" that was supposedly "lost on the filmmakers"? "The Road Warrior" later goes on to say "You want to know what someone is really like? Look at what they hate." This is a bunch of pop psychology nonsense that people only seem to reference when it conveniently supports their contentions. It might be true in a few cases but as a general rule it is a highly dubious assertion. One can bet that "The Road Warrior" would not be satisfied with a claim that since Conservatives oppose pornography that they must really be pornography addicts. Or that they are against homosexuality because they are all secretly homosexuals. Of course he tries to support his claim that the Left endorses "policies that are more closely linked with Socialism, Fascism, and Hitler" by listing the many freedom-trampling policies for which the Liberals have been responsible. I don't disagree that Liberals have been guilty of supporting some very bad legislation which resulted in the loss of freedoms in this country. However, "The Road Warrior" is guilty of the worse kind of hypocrisy to bring attention to these facts since the Conservatives' track record is filled with similar attacks on freedom. After all, which party is most guilty of moral censorship (of pornography, movies, video games, internet etc.), heavy taxation made necessary by wars of aggression, support for the particular brand of slavery euphemistically referred to as "the draft", and the witch hunts of McCarthyism? Which party has been most supportive of our aggressive interventionist policy which has resulted in the unnecessary deaths of millions and has made Americans less secure, as well as hated by people around the world? And which political group has been most likely to make excuses for such things as the Patriot Act, illegal domestic spying, torture and indefinite detentions? And aren’t people on the Right guilty of another kind of thought policing when they try to shout down dissenters with vitriolic language and vicious personal attacks against individuals using Conservative stock phrases such as "you're either with us or against us" and “love it or leave it”? And let us not forget discussion-fostering terms like "anti-American" and "traitor". If I had a dime for every time I have been called one of the above terms by a Conservative for simply voicing my opposition to the war in Iraq I would be a rich man. Conservatives do not allow debate on such issues and such a fact must be seen as no less a case of thought policing as the Liberal thought policing that they rightly attack. The first reason one sees so many Conservatives attacking “V for Vendetta” is that, in their guilt, they see the movie as a criticism of their beloved current Conservative regime, for which they must apologize and defend at every turn. More importantly however, is the sad fact that many Conservatives, despite the rhetoric they spout really do not understand the principles of freedom. That fact is most obvious when one considers the Conservative infatuation with war and militarism. They seem not to understand the relationship that exists between war and interventionism abroad and the inevitable aggrandizement of the State domestically. “The Road Warrior” writes near the end of his review that he “can’t take hypocrisy and this film reeks of it” but I believe that deep down it is his own hypocrisy that he can’t take. The movie, acting as a kind of mirror that makes one confront oneself and what one believes, is uncomfortable for those who know deep down that though they claim to be in favor of freedom they are really part of a cultural movement which is in the process of destroying freedom.

Posted by: c.walton at March 21, 2006 03:44 AM (OvU5j)

6 There's no need to "double-post" this. Wasting my bandwidth with one long-winded comment is bad enough. I deleted the one on the 1/4/06 post.

Posted by: Gary at March 21, 2006 07:12 AM (eecse)

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