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Movies: Selma January 10, 2015

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So last night I watched the movie “Selma”. Of course I watched it online. Yes, it was a reviewer copy of the movie.

The movie begins with a group of black children in a church coming down a set of stairs and then a horrifying boom happens and bits and pieces flying everywhere. This was the Birmingham Church bombing. I cannot believe how horrible and despicable the then white minority and yes they were the minority – not the black people in Alabama were. But the white folks had a lock on the political and law enforcement sphere and used it to repress and abuse the black community.

The movie focuses on the march from Selma, AL to Montgomery, AL  but also focuses on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. President Johnson and the then racist prick of a governor of Alabama, George Wallace.

And you have images in the movie of white cops murdering black people. Just outright cold blooded murder. And the vote suppression was something fierce. Toward the beginning of the movie a black woman goes to register to vote in what I believe was Selma. She slides the application forward and says “It’s all right this time.” to which the clerk replies “I’ll say when it’s all right.” The clerk then asks the woman to recite the preamble to the Constitution. Then to say how many county ¬†judges there are in Alabama. So the woman answers “67” and then the clerk says “Name them.” while the next scene shows the clerk using a big old DENIED stamp on her application.

Now let’s move forward – officemate and I had a discussion about policing. He lays blame for the murder of a number of black men by police recently to some degree on the victims of police for not respecting authority of the cops. I explained that until cops stop racist policies, it’s never going to change and that no respect for authority is due to police. I told him to go look up the Milgram experiment and the Zimbardo Prison experiment on Youtube.

But it goes further than that. Even today we see voter suppression with Voter ID laws. They just don’t want black and Latino people to vote. That’s what it is, nothing more. It doesn’t eliminate fraud in elections, it doesn’t make elections more secure – it simply represses the vote.

And Governor Wallace, that smug son of a bitch got his comeuppance – an attempted assassination left him crippled for the rest of his life. Ha!

And of course President Johnson signed the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Which by the way Republicans were hell bent on repealing recently.

So when you hear white politicians talk about Voter ID, and how there’s no need for federal oversight of elections in the deep south anymore – you’re listening to a racist prick talk. That’s what it is, all code word for racial bigotry.

Movies:: Netflix: Christopher and His Kind November 28, 2013

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So last night a recommendation popped up on Netflix, Christopher and His Kind. Now I’ve watched another movie about Chris and Don and it was cute and all.

But this movie took place in Berlin in the early 1930’s. First I must say Isherwood’s sexual romps in Berlin, and we only saw a small part of it must have been incredible. I’m going to have to out and get the book now. And I have to say the guy who played Caspar was pretty hot.

But the thing that struck me, there’s one scene in there which must have happened in Berlin prior to the atrocities committed by the Nazi’s in greater Germany. In one scene jackbooted thugs are marching through the streets with torches held high. And then I thought – sort of what our military must look like when it marches into a country. Then there were the scenes with Juden painted across shop windows. Now that wasn’t very smart since they were the commercial underpinning of the economy.

But the book burning – there was a strand of anti-intellectualism in Nazi Germany at the time. And I know that quite a few scientists high tailed it out of Germany in the early 30’s so in essence Germany suffered a brain drain which meant they’d never conquer the atom, plus the expenditure on feeding, housing and equipping an Army gets pretty expensive over time. Just look at the U.S. – we spend a nominal half a trillion dollars every year on military expenditure. There’s a reason many of the founding fathers of the United States feared a standing army.

But all in all a fairly interesting movie, enough so it makes me want to buy the book.

Movies: Django Unchained April 28, 2013

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As is always the case for a Tarantino movie it starts off interesting and then the blood shed starts. It’s underlying theme is a story of bonds, both those of love and those of brotherhood and respect.

But the amount of blood and general opening of a can of whoop ass is spectacular. There’s the next to last scene before Django blows up the Candieland mansion. The part where he’s on the stairs with the two black women and says to them “Tell Miss Laura Goodbye” And the women look at him puzzled and he repeats himself and they say “Goodbye Miss Laura”. And then DJango blows a bitch away. Too funny.

And the funny part is, at the beginning where Dr. Shultz and Django meet Mr. Candie I said “They’re all gonna die. Every last one of them.” I was so right.

Movies: Lincoln November 25, 2012

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Ok before I launch just go out and see the latest movie “Lincoln”

Outstanding performances by Daniel Day Lewis as President Lincoln, Sally Field as Mary Todd Lincoln and even Tommy Lee Jones as Rep. Thaddeus Stevens.

Movie spoiler – it picks up in 1865, the forth year of the U.S. Civil War. By this point in time the north is taking the lead and a peace is eminent and reconstruction can begin.

It focuses on the life, as gleaned through historical record, of the decision to push the 13th Amendment and to negotiate a peace with the Confederacy.

The political push-pull is extremely interesting. Not only that back in the mid 19th century the Republicans were actually the progressive party. Imagine that. Now of course it’s the complete opposite.

The focus on one Representative, Thaddeus Stevens a supporter of ending slavery for the past 30 years of his career in the House, we find out WHY he supported it near the very end of the movie.

One other thing, the political environment back then was almost a contact sport. I love it!

We thought we’d catch the 7:05PM show on Friday evening. By the time we arrived it had been sold out. There was a 9:45PM and 10:15PM showing but even the 9:45PM was sold out. So we got in on the 10:15PM showing. It’s a fairly long movie, some 150 minutes (2 and a half hours) but well worth watching.

And it I’ve heard folks say the timing of this was delayed to counter the fact that the Republicans were actually the good guys back in the mid to later 19th century. But I think it’s perfect timing what with the threats to secede by the likes of Texas and a handful of other states. Even here in RI we got 4,550 signatures to secede and I bet I know where they all came from, the towns of East Greenwich and part of North Kingstown. They think their shit doesn’t stink.

Online Movies October 15, 2007

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So a friend turned me on to a new movie site, it’s ssupload. Ignore the soft core porn ads and just browse the movie categories. Some will require certain common plugins.

Anyhow I’ve watched:

Blow – very interesting story.
Live Free or Die Hard – Good expansion of the Die Hard serial.
Breaking and Entering – Interesting little story
300 – Wow, the allegory is pretty powerful there.


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