Sunday, June 27, 2004

Fahrenheit 9/11 Review

I saw the movie with my wife tonight. The opening scene of the 2000 presidential election told you pretty much all you needed to know about what you were about to see. Michael Moore has never accepted that Gore lost the election and he will do anything in his power to see that Bush isn’t reelected.

I don’t think you could call this a documentary as there is no balance to what you’re seeing. Let’s face it, there’s a whole lot of video of Bush out there and it isn’t very hard to find clips of him over the years which are unbecoming and then show them in an way so as to convey the image of a bumbling idiot. The film does a nice job of that I’ll agree.

Moore begins to weave a complicated arrangement Between the Saudis and the Bush family which either the president is overseeing or isn’t aware exists. I say that because it’s my understanding from listening to the left all these years that Bush isn’t really all that smart and so I suppose he’s incapable of such tangential thinking…the kind of thinking necessary to pull together all these players for the enrichment of a few. You can’t have it both ways, Mike.

The film goes on to describe how the Bush administration gave preferential treatment to the members of Bin Laden family in getting them out of the country just after the attacks on 9/11. If you drank the koolaid they were serving during the film you would then agree that the Bush family knew that the attacks of 9/11 were going to happen months before they ever did because military contracts were drawn up and brokered just before the attacks which enriched not only the Bush family and their cronies but also the Royal Saudis. Take a big swallow…no no…take some more, there’s plenty here for you.

I suppose it doesn’t matter that just this past week, Richard Clarke stated that the decision to fly the Bin Laden family out of the country was made at his level and never went above him…meaning, the decision did not involve the president as the film would want you to believe.

I was really disappointed at this point and I could sense that Tammy would rather be watching something else but she was doing this for me and so we stayed put. A lot of what I saw is a blur to me now and I know I’m leaving out some things I intended to write about but I’ll press on and see if they come back to me.

The film would want you to believe that life was just like Willaby (next stop, Willaby, for you Twilight Zone enthusiasts) and all was so nice and serene in Baghdad before we came along. People were dancing in the streets, getting married, laughing, frolicking and enjoying life like never before. All was good under Saddam and we should be so lucky to have a leader like that. Then the bombs begin to fall on Baghdad and you’re treated to roughly 30 minutes of perverse war footage. You’re shown soldiers who get pumped up before combat by listening to heavy metal or whatever. They can even listen to it while they’re fighting from their tanks…very surreal for them I’m sure and way cool no doubt. You’re shown soldiers beating down doors of homes in the middle of the night to arrest ‘college students’ who were minding their own business. It’s all one sided video which if it told the entire story would have me crawling over people to vote for Kerry to get rid of Bush. Fortunately for me, I didn’t drink the koolaid and I was able to remind myself that there is another side to this story…a side which Mike wouldn’t want you to see. I mean, if Mike were interested in telling the truth he would have found some way to show Saddam at his best…you know, when he was doing the things which earned him the reputation he enjoys today? Mike conveniently leaves all that out as I would imagine it would muddy the waters just a bit.

Anyway, Mike does score a direct hit when he finds a woman from his hometown of Flint, Michigan who supports the war and has a daughter who fought in Desert Storm as well as a son who eventually is called away to Iraq. She describes herself as a conservative Democrat. Mike initially finds her at her job working for the city as a job placement coordinator or some similar position…sorry, I can’t recall. She’s supportive of the president and all his efforts to try and liberate the people of Iraq. Mike is at her house one morning as she walks outside to put her flag up. She’s a very patriotic woman and very proud of her children who have willingly gone to fight for the freedoms we all enjoy. Of course you can see this coming a mile away and I’m sorry to ruin this for those who haven’t seen the film because it really is the moment for which the movie has been building for the past 2 hours. Oh, you guessed it too? Yes, we’re now gathered in the living room of this patriotic woman and all her family is by her side. She begins to detail how she was watching the news one day hoping to catch a glimpse of her son as he was now in Iraq. Then she heard the reporter say that there was a “Blackhawk down”. She has a restless night and is awoken to a telephone call asking if she was the mother of __________ (sorry, I can’t remember his name). She describes how she fell to the ground and had to crawl…you know what…I’m just gonna leave it here…you get the idea. Tammy was crying and of course it was tragic as all loss of life is. War isn’t pretty and Mike wasn’t going to let you leave the theater with any belief to the contrary.

He follows this mother to Washington as she wants to go to the Whitehouse to try and rid herself of the grief she’s carrying. He’s got the camera right in her face as she’s sobbing and is overcome with emotion for her dead son. I’m sure Mike isn’t far off with a grin which could kill all over his face. Yes! Payday!

Remember as you watch this movie that all the major players from the Democratic party were supportive of going to war with Iraq. Even Clinton said he supported the war but he would have first wanted the unwavering support of France and Germany. I don’t know that he ever would have gotten that in light of the Oil for Food program and the scandal which surrounds it. Do you suppose the war in Iraq under the leadership of a democrat would look any different?

One final question since this movie is heavy on the carnage of innocent lives…Do you suppose Mike supports partial birth abortion? Much of Moore's focus is on the suffering of innocent women and children because of the war. He wants to leave you with the impression that if it weren't for us, all would be wonderful in Iraq. So, with that in mind, seeing as how Moore has such a soft spot in his heart for those who suffer innocently, I wonder if we can expect to see him filming outside an abortion clinic for his next project. Maybe he could follow a woman around who is torn between giving her baby up for adoption or aborting it. He could then go inside and film as the abortion takes place and he could fade the film out with gruesome scenes of body parts being sucked through a vacuum.

I guess what I'm really saying is that I don't buy the argument that Moore is really all that concerned about innocent people dying because if he were he would take on this issue too. Moore's real aim/concern is to discredit Bush and have you believe that Saddam was a leader who presided over a funcional, loving and ideal society. Moore uses the war dead and wounded to carry his message of hate for him. Quite a disgusting film at best.

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