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...a sweatshop of moxie

Monday, October 20, 2008

So I Saw "W"

I snuck into a showing of Ollie Stone's "W" this Sunday. I rarely perform the switcheroo, but I was durned if my hard-earned dollars would reflect positively for him, at the box office.

I don't know what I expected, but I walked away feeling half-amused.

Sure, it's mainly a hatchet job that takes literary license with its protagonist's life, but it wasn't entirely unsympathetic to the man. Brolin boiled President Bush down to what presumably Stone believes is his essence -- the jokey scion of a high-achieving family who has a daddy complex; a man-child incapable of introspection, just "Christianist" belief. Brolin plays him as a person with no inner monologue. What you see, is what you get and what you get is a man in perpetual motion.

But it wasn't savagely negative. Hang on though. Maybe there is something at work here, that allows me to view "W" this way.

Perhaps like with Palin's SNL skits, which many liberals and yes some conservatives thought "sandbagged" her, I didn't think they were so bad because I expected far, far worse. After all, after 7 weeks of incessant degrading commentary about Palin, and nearly 8 years of the same for George W. Bush, I have heard every negative spin on these two to know what unfairness is.

Perhaps like a battered wife, who flinches when a kiss is coming simply because she is used to expecting the punch not the love, I am grateful for the gentleness.

Thus, even though the criticism is palpable to others, I am grateful for any crumb of leniency on the part of my usual aggressor.

When the film was over, my opinion was semi-confirmed by the commentaries of the audience as they filed out. I kept my ears open, of course.

"What did you think of it?"
"It was sympathetic to him."
"Yeah, I was expecting more hate."

Even though Stone tried a similar psycho-history approach in Nixon, I suppose that was my same reaction too.

"Yeah, I was expecting more hate."

So thanks for the crumbs, Mr. Stone. I'll take 'em.

P.S.: Look at this photo. Real Dubya? Or Brolin?

That's Brolin, "Rove", with Millie and Barney. The physical resemblence is striking. From the mouth up, identical.

It's Brolin, not Fey who should be remembered for the best political "impersonation" this year. But he won't be. His was genuine acting.

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  • You're way too soft on W. He's not a conservative, as you claim to be (and as I consider myself). He's arguably been the most liberal president, certainly in fiscal terms, since LBJ. And people think this is conservative! And their dislike/hatred of him is transferred to the idea of conservatism. It's a disaster. If Obama wins -shudder- I have no doubt that he is W's legacy.

    I supported W in both elections, the second time reluctantly so, because I thought Kerry was a clown. I now think Gore should have won in 2000 (before he went crazy). Combined with a GOP Congress, we would have been governed much more conservatively.

    I share your admiration for Palin. I hope McCain will not have ruined her.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Mon Oct 20, 04:22:00 pm GMT-4  

  • Josh Brolin did a convincing Dubya, though it reminded me a lot of his cowboy character from No Country for Old Men... over all, i don't doubt that 'W.' will have the effect Oliver Stone desired

    By Anonymous patrick, at Fri Oct 24, 04:06:00 pm GMT-4  

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