American way of life attacked in films at Cannes
By Erik Kirschbaum, Reuters, Cannes, France
America is used to the back of Hollywood's hand... nothing new here.
What, however, is an continually depressing comment on humanity in general is their inability to separate fact from fiction, and attempts for box office success vs responsibility. Apparently avid movie goers prefer to see a screenwriter and director's views as an unshakable truth.
Without having a Michael Moore entry to immortalize at Cannes this year, the celluloid set turned their accolates instead to the Danish director Lars von Trier, who offers his own version of American attitudes towards slavery.
"Manderlay," about a fictional Alabama plantation where people are living in 1933 as if slavery were never abolished, staggered festival-goers with a disturbing portrayal of America that fails, even today, to come to terms with its racist past.
Key words here... fictional, folks. What kind of mentality is permeating the world if they can become "staggered" by a fictional storyline with the intent to dismay, misinform and perpetuation anti-Americanism?
Yet here we find the Cannes movie goers assume that since Lars "made a movie", it must be "so". Somewhere overlooked is the pesky fact that the man has never once been to the USA. So on what experience is his entire slant based?
We've been steadily outbreeding racial hatred in our children since the mid 20th century. And while we're not perfect, the added commentary by the reporter, Mr. Kirschbaum, that we are failing to "come to terms" with our racist past is nothing more than sensational hogwash meant to further demean the US.
Mandalay is nothing short of absurd and obvious propaganda. von Triers has alot of nerve bashing the US about racism. In fact, according to the World Fact Site on Denmark, the ethnic groups of Denmark are comprised of Scandinavian, Inuit, Faroese, German, Turkish, Iranian, and Somali. I'm not seeing alot of presence of those of African descent in the Netherlands. Thus considering the white bred population cosmetic, one can't hold them up as a model for inclusion and tolerance for those of color since there are apparently so few in the country, they barely register.
What we can do is substitute those of color with Muslim immigrants. von Triers' own "tolerant" country's population is increasingly reversing their liberal notions and illegal immigration with the rise of Muslim populations that refuse to integrate in the Netherland lifestyle. The recent murder of Van Gogh and terrorist plans thwarted to attack Amsterdam's red light district have highlighted their own danger in the WOT.
Will von Triers address this hot button issue in his screenplays?
Of course not. One reason because he, like Van Gogh, may find himself headless in the streets in broad daylight. But the other reason is because the director, like the rest of the world, prefers... nay, *enjoys*... bashing America.
In his own words:
Von Trier, whose fear of flying has prevented him from visiting the United States, won thunderous cheers at the world premiere and a news conference, where he said he enjoyed bashing America on screen because it invades his life even in Denmark.
"We are all under the influence -- and it's a very bad influence -- from America," said the 49-year-old Dane. "In my country everything has to do with America. America is kind of sitting on the world.
"America has to do with 60 percent of my brain and all things I experience in my life, and I'm not happy about that," von Trier said. I'd say 60 percent of my life is American so I am in fact an 'American' too. But I can't go there and vote or change anything there. That is why I make films about America."
The benefits of capitalism and freedom are not strictly "American". But this much is so... because American technology and advancement makes his life in the Netherlands easier, their employment of these benefits of freedom do not make him "American".
Oddly enough, the Int'l Herald Tribute has brought something to bear that directly conflicts with von Triers own personal anti-American views. In their article today, Politicus: For Dutch and French, not the same Europe, journalist John Vinocur addressed the mutual dissatisfaction of both France and Denmark's populations to accept the EU Constitution before them. The EU powers that be, of course, badly want a "yes" vote because they believe this will limit the American influence on Europe.
These words almost echo von Triers idiotic notion that he's "60% American".
But the article further points out that both country's socialist takovers have resulted in an economy that performs badly, and that the Netherlands - unlike von Triers - is not suffering from a "save-us-from-America" attitude at all.
This leaves me to point out that the only thing truly "American" about von Triers is his strong identification with the extreme liberal left, and his bonds with superficial Hollywood - accenting their commonality of churning out celluloid chuck full of their mutated version of American history with the intent to affect the world's view of the superpower everyone so loves to hate.
To top off the irony, von Triers' barbs and criticisms are achieved using our American technology. Were it not for the country he so loves to hate, even his cinematic method of expression and all the hi-tech toys he employs would not be at his Danish fingertips.
Sometimes I'd love to be able to pull a "It's a wonderful life" experience in real life - sending these arrogant, socialist whiners into a time where the US, our freedom, and the technological and medical gains we have inspired worldwide, never existed.
But I, unlike the Cannes attendees, know the difference between cinematic lore and reality.