Sunday, June 27, 2004

Review: Fahrenheit 9/11

Michael Moore proves once again that a documentarian is not just a reporter. As Moore is hypo-criticized by the Right for not adhering to journalistic standards, we must recall that a documentary is a story ABOUT reality, not just reality. It is art; it is not the news. The artist’s views SHOULD color the telling. The artist SHOULD tell the story so as to invest the pedestrian facts of small ‘t’ truth with emotional significance. By so doing, the film artist provides the audience with what life too often lacks - genuinely meaningful emotional experiences. When we suddenly know the facts, and care about them deeply because of their emotional impact on us, we see the large ‘T’ Truth that lives behind the bare facts. Providing an emotional relationship to Truth is what all art strives for, and what Moore’s F911 delivers.

The audience applauded, shouted with joy, laughed, cried, and seethed with a steely resolve to take back our country from the cretins who have wormed their way into power. I have never seen a theatre crowd so charged with emotion and moving through catharsis in such unity. It was a beautiful thing, and the Right are properly afraid of it. It is powerful. It is subversive. It is dangerous. It is ours. And it is unstoppable. Moore’s film will be a factor in November, perhaps THE factor- no doubt about it. I recommend that people pay for their conservative friends and relatives to go. Start funds for free tickets for registered Republicans. Rent a whole theater and invite the VFW, DAV, active duty military personnel. Get Bush’s base to this film. Show them their betrayal.

Using images of real events and real people, Moore tells us the story of what has happened to America over that past 4 years. Moore exposes relationships among the elites of America and Saudi Arabia that provide possible improper motives for Administration policy choices. Moore’s critics claim that Moore charges conspiracy; he does not. He suggests an open confluence of financial interests which may have caused the national interest to be subordinated to the private interests of those in power. Moore examines the Republican Party’s use of fear against Americans as tool of political manipulation and repression. He points out the hollowness and absurdity of this Administration’s "homeland security" policy. He deconstructs the manipulation of perceptions which led us into war in Iraq. And more than anything else, Moore humanizes the costs of the war for both Iraqis and Americans in a way that even the hardest heart cannot ignore. It is impressive that he was able to accomplish so much in such a short time.

F911 an uncomfortable story to watch if you are not already familiar with the facts and allegations contained in the film. The extent of the Administration’s perfidy is shocking. Where the subject of the film a Democratic Administration, I would be likely to reject the charges as mere propaganda. Perhaps some of the charges Moore repeats - not invents, repeats - will be taken seriously by Republicans of good will and sound ethics, but I doubt it. This is a story for the Democratic base. It is also an incomplete story. The film ends with the manufactured irony of Bush telling us not to be fooled again. But the real resolution of Moore’s tale falls outside the film’s scope. Moore allows us, the audience, to determine together how the movie will end when we go to the polls in November. By the time Moore’s film is released on DVD, the ending will have been determined. I hope Moore includes a special feature of the ending we contribute to his film.


At 8:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This column-blurb in the Arizona Daily Star is the height of Moore-twisted irony. Democratic Congressional candidate Tim Sultan and volunteers were given the hook while trying to register voters at a mall theatre showing of Fahrenheit. Crazy. Check it out – and check out

AZ Daily Star, 6-28-04, from C.J. Karamargin’s Political Notebook Column
Voter signup blocked

No question about it, "Fahrenheit 9/11" is a political movie. Just don't try to do anything political at the theaters showing it.

Democratic congressional candidate Tim Sultan and a group of volunteers wanted to use the movie's Friday opening at El Con Mall for something really radical: registering voters. Sorry, they were told, not allowed.

Mall spokeswoman Susan Allen told the Arizona Daily Star afterward that long-standing mall policy prohibits such activity. Sultan was incredulous.

"We just wanted to make it easy for people to be involved," he said.

At 2:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Blah, Blah, Blah, Blah, Blah.... Get over yourself Michael Moore! And will you people do some credible research and stop believing whatever the wind blows in your face. Contact CNN and get a hold of there archive documentaries on Iraq. You'll be interested to find a little piece CNN did on Sadam Hussien's terrorist training camp complete with an out of comission DC-10 that several of the 19 Al-Queda highjackers trained and aquainted themselves with just 6 months prior to the attacks on the WTC. There was also a piece done where one of Sadam's former nuclear physicist, who had fled the country for his life, sat down and gave the interviewer a detailed description of the highjackers, which he attests to seeing in Iraq meeting with Sadam, receiving financial aid from Sadam, one year before the 9/11 attacks. This pysicist also confirmed the fact that Sadam was vigorously working on obtaining and creating nuclear weapons along with biological and chemical weapons. But hey, don't take my word for it, do the homework yourself and stop being spoon fed the false assumptions of Michael Moore and all his hollywood disciples. Oops, did I say disciples? Why that would make him a sort of anti-christ wouldn't it? My appologies. I can't call him an anti-anything when he doesn't believe in anything, now can I?


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