They are well done and compelling. They have some wonderful lines.
Thank goodness for the Internet and the American Conservative, where one may find some of these movies discussed fairly. Thank goodness for the inspired writers, directors, actors and producers for coming together and making it work. Thank goodness for DVDs, and for Netflix who can get them to me.
Thank goodness for my husband who diligently populates our Netflix wishlist, and had all three on order before I even mentioned them. I take this as not only validating his formidable husbandry, but my theory that radical libertarians are hidden under every rock, in every county, across the country.
The first is V for Vendetta. What a refreshing idea, blowing up one’s own parliament. What a cool quote about governments that should be afraid of their people, not people afraid of their governments. What a neat enemy of the people, that pseudo-conservative Christian national/socialist government, with its unitary executive and faith-based rule, its police state, its cowed and ignorant citizenry. Could never happen here, of course. People who must wear masks to be free, that’s crazy talk! It’s all great entertainment, and fun to watch.
The mainstream fogies in movie review-land didn’t like the movie much. It glorifies terrorism, they said. Stupid plot, they said. Celebrates destruction and promotes pointless violence, said they.
My goodness, sounds just like our Middle East policy.
I bet the President loved the movie, given those reviews. I have to admit, while watching it I did feel a bit the wild neoconservative, a more feminine version of Michael Ledeen, taking a guilty moment to relish a fantasy of wiping the slate clean, destroying it all in a burst of creative destruction, and starting fresh.
The second movie worth watching is the less overtly violent but far more frightening Sophie Scholl: The Final Days. It’s the story of a few days in the life of Sophie Scholl, her brother, and their friend who were tried before Hitler’s People’s Court and executed in 1943. They were members of the White Rose, an underground Nazi resistance movement, and these three young Germans were arrested shortly after distributing the sixth in a series of now famous anti-Nazi pamphlets in Munich.
It’s a heartbreaking film. After watching the movie, I read a review by Roger Ebert, who noted the Nazis were just following the law, it was all so lawful, and that the movie demonstrates why it is "crucial that a constitution guarantee rights and freedoms, and why it is dangerous for any government to ignore it." Huh? Say what?
Looked to me like the government did just fine ignoring rights, writing its own laws, and doing whatever it damn well pleased for well over a decade. The documentation-fetishism and legalism of Germany before, during and after this event indicate above all that trust in a piece of paper, or thousands of tons of it, to restrain government and make it "good" is misplaced and idiotic.
I’m no Roger Ebert, but I am also not colorblind. The courtroom scene features the progressive 1943 putrefaction of Hitler’s People’s Court, originally set up by Hitler in late 1933 to rectify an inconvenient justice produced by German courts. German justice had made the mistake of finding those wicked Communists not guilty of the Reichstag Fire, and suggesting on the record that Hitler’s own people were the likely culprits.
In the 1943 People’s Court, nearly everyone is dressed in black or gray. Only two wear red. One is the pompous and angry judge, and the other is our dear Sophie. She is in every way the real judge, the real enforcer, representing simple righteousness and an overtly Christian idea of justice. Appealing to a higher law, a higher father, her conscience as her guide, she faces a Pontius Pilot dressed to the nines.
Again, here’s a movie George W. Bush should really enjoy. An exuberant, playful and innocent person, chosen by her Higher Father to do His work, only to be criticized and mocked by angry and frightened people, including robed judges. People, as we all know, who are today remembered as villains, powerless against the vision of the true believer.
I think Dubya could really get into this film. It is subtitled, but maybe Laura could help him keep up.
Lastly, I am recommending a film I am still waiting to see. I’ve heard it is good, that it really delivers a wallop. Sends a message, you know. A film that will change the world, if you would just give it a chance. And if you watch it and don’t like it, well, it is probably your own fault for not following my advice correctly, as I intended it to be followed. And no, I’m not going to reimburse you for the ticket price, or rental fee, or lost time, or any maiming or death that may occur.
Yes, I know, I know. By now you all suspect me of being true neoconservative at heart.
Idiocracy is its name. I read Steve Sailer’s review in the American Conservative (the October 9th issue) and saw this brief mention at Steve’s blog. I’m waiting for Netflix to get it to me. Establishment reviewers gave Idiocracy the same treatment they gave V for Vendetta and Sophie School: The Final Days. Predictably, we find Idiocracy, well, hard to find.
Just like those WMDs George was looking for all those years ago.
But just like our great leader, we shouldn’t give up. And with that in mind, may I wish you all a wonderful Thanksgiving, and happy movie watching with friends and family.
Karen Kwiatkowski, Ph.D. [send her mail], a retired USAF lieutenant colonel, has written on defense issues with a libertarian perspective for MilitaryWeek.com, hosted the call-in radio show American Forum, and blogs occasionally for Huffingtonpost.com and Liberty and Power. Archives of her American Forum radio program can be accessed here and here. To receive automatic announcements of new articles, click here. A version of this article originally appeared on MilitaryWeek.com.