Sep 7, 2006

Get over it.

Years ago Oliver Stone released 'Nixon', a biopic on one of our country's most controversial, and corrupt, presidents. Before the movie opened critics on the right slammed Stone's portrayal of Nixon claiming that the film was a myth and that most of the conversations and plot devices never happened. The left, as well as fans of the film with no particular bias, dismissed the critics citing that it was only Oliver Stone's opinion and that dramatizations should never be viewed as historical record.

Me I enjoyed the movie regardless of it's bias and I'm a huge critic of that administration. The acting was great and the rest of the elements was crafted well, but I too believe the events were embellished for dramatic and possible political purposes. Like most people I looked at the film as art and not as a textbook.

The tables have now been turned and I do find it amusing. ABC is set to release a miniseries entitled 'The Path to 9/11' which dramatizes the events that lead up to the terrorist attacks. Critics now on the left are bashing the screenwriters portrayal of the Clinton administration which has him appearing as less than diligent in capturing Osama after the USS Cole attack.

Web sites such as Crooks & Liars, a blog I enjoy, have gone out of their way to call for a boycott of Disney, ABC's parent company, for producing a feature that doesn't entirely fit the historical record. Many people are quick to defend the good name of Clinton and they see this television series as a serious threat to their savior.

Maybe people are lashing out about this miniseries in response to CBS pulling their Reagan miniseries, which I hear was not a flattering portrait of the intellectual midget.

It's a dramatization people. It's not history. The miniseries sole purpose is to entertain and sell products and not to give an accurate portrayal of events. Clinton's name will not be forever tarnished by this miniseries alone. Will peoples' opinions be swayed by this? Hard to say really, but I'm not going to hold Hollywood accountable for the public's ignorance.

Davey Crockett did not die at the Alamo gloriously in battle, Houdini did not perish because of a failed stunt, and Forrest Gump did not alert the police about the Watergate break in. For anyone of you who believe Forrest Gump actually existed I have some money that's tied up in Nigeria for you.

Would it be nice if all Hollywood producers were good and honest human beings who don't have political biases and are not too busy to keep their noses out of the coked laced cleavage of hookers long enough to bring you quality entertainment without sacrificing the possible good names of our elected leaders?

Yeah that would be nice. It would be even nicer if I were a super spy who fought ninjas for a living. I don't know what that has to do with my point, but being a super spy would be way cool. Oh and lap dances from Salma Hayek.

"I am not trying to be a historian and a dramatist; I'm a dramatist, a dramatic historian, or one who does a dramatic interpretation of history." - Oliver Stone


Scott said...

I agree 100%, people need to just be a little more media savy and look at more than one source. If people think that Clinton did not do enough, that is a perfectly valid opinion and should be shared, just as I am sure that his people will be working overtime to offer up other ideas.

Interesting stuff.


rawbean said...

The thing is though, some stuff in the movie will be true, some won't - where is the line. I know people shouldn't rely on miniseries as a news source, but unfortunately they will anyways.

I just think it junks things up. Those miniseries always suck anyways. I won't be watching.

Mattbear said...

The problem I see with them writing this miniseries this way is, it certainly has the appearance of being more right-wing friendly propaganda, disguised as entertainment. I think a lot of people are sick of it, with Fox News, O'Reilly, and so many others in the media sucking up to the current administration, and this appears to be another example of it so these people are going to attack it.

The difference between "Path to 9/11" and "Nixon" - and I'm not even coming close to saying this is accurate - could be seen as Oliver Stone, the rebellious filmmaker, doing his thing; as opposed to Disney/ABC, the huge mega-corporation, bending the truth to serve the propaganda needs of the administration they are friendly with.

I suspect if you asked a lot of these people what the difference was, they might not be able to tell you, but that is the difference of appearance that causes them to have a different view. Add that to their general weariness of the ridiculous defenses every day on TV of the administration's gross errors, lies, and outright crimes, and people are going to be on the attack when ABC airs this shit.

And the real problem - the one that scares me - is there are so many Americans who buy into what they see on TV as the gospel truth. Miniseries, news, movie, it doesn't matter. Doesn't that scare you? Doesn't it make you wish that ABC wouldn't put outright fiction like that into the movie?