25 November 2007

But Who Redacts the Redacters?

Duncan Hunter is a U.S. Senator and the bottom feeder among the remaining Republican aspirants for the 2008 Presidential nomination. His current attempt to get free TV time is to throw a tantrum at the director Brian De Palma and the producer Mark Cuban for daring to make the movie Redacted. For De Palma, the movie is a sort of do-over of 1989's Casualties of War, since we again have soldiers raping a native girl, but in Iraq rather than in Vietnam. The similarity is a matter of De Palma's taste, since Redacted is apparently based on a true incident. Sen. Hunter doesn't deny that the incident happened, but he complains that De Palma presents it as if it were a typical incident. The Senator infers an indictment of collective guilt against the U.S. military in Iraq, and worries that the movie will somehow further embolden insurgents and terrorists.

Since he doesn't want the movie itself redacted, the only point of Sen. Hunter's outburst is to get some attention from those heartland folks who are supposed to get outraged at every new enormity from the media elite. That said, his comments slander the filmmakers. I haven't seen Redacted, and from reviews I gather that it's a stylistic experiment that doesn't quite come off. But to think that anyone needs to see this movie in order to hate the U.S. military and want to kill Americans is asinine. Even if the filmmakers meant to say that the military as a whole were beastly and deserved whatever the insurgents dished out, how different would such an attitude be from the viewpoint that justified invading two entire countries to avenge a crime committed by 19 men who came from different countries altogether? The Senator should scrutinize his own assumptions before condemning what he assumes to be someone else's message.

1 comment:

hobbyfan said...

"Bottom feeder"? Shoot, until now, I've never heard of Duncan "Yo-Yo" Hunter. Didn't know, though, that Cuban, the Dallas Mavericks owner, was also associated with "Redacted". If attention is what Senator Hunter is after, he'll not just get it from the heartland, but the rest of the country, since he otherwise has been little more than a footnote in all the pre-primary season hyperbole. And, at that, most of the media will dismiss him and his arguments.