A Film Review By Jason L. King
|Rating:Rated R for naughty things being said about the president, and disturbing photos from the war in Iraq.
Directed By:Michael Moore
A few years back, some of you may remember a simpler time in life. A time where the American peoples had a choice to make. They had to decide to either elect a Robot monkey clone for a president or cardboard cut out. The country was split, what would they do? As the polls closed, it looked for sure, the cardboard like cutout known as Al Gore had won the presidential election by a hair. But as the American’s quickly learned, Florida had a small problem with their voting machines. Votes were tallied wrong across the board and so the recount and the government decided to give the election to George W. Bush. A lot has happened since that simple time, a tragedy has struck, unemployment rates have risen and our world relations have plummeted. A war has occurred, and a country is caught in what some are calling this generation’s Vietnam. Now 4 years after the aftermath known as President “Dubbayah” film maker Michael Moore tries to give us the real story on what exactly happened to our simple country those last 4 years.
Fahrenheit 9/11 Is Michael Moore’s chance to take a stand against the president. His documentary is a collection of stories and “facts” about George W. Bush’s reaction to the 9/11 attacks, and the war in Iraq. He also tries to point out the relationship between the Saudi Arabian governments and the Bush families and tries to explain in his opinion just what is really making our government internally tick.
Moore has always been a controversial documentarian. His views much of the time seem a little far out in left field, and Moore has a history of somewhat fabricating the truth to better fit his political agenda. Whether the movie is 100% fact or fiction is up for debate, though rumor has it Moore spent extra time making sure that he didn’t say anything that could be classified as slander in any way shape of form, for the obvious legal reasons. Make no mistake though, Moore takes plenty of stabs at the President, using live footage of the President in reaction to the 9/11 attacks, which shows him casually reading a copy of My Pet Goat, a children’s book in a kindergarten class. Moore also attacks the Bush family in their previous endeavors with the Bin Laden family and their oil trade as well as Bush’s extended vacation he took during his first year as the president. Whether or not you agree with everything that you hear on the screen, surprisingly isn’t what makes this film good or bad. Moore’s views are accepted by some, hated by others, but the fact of the matter is he tries to keep everything tied together. His focus is much sharper than his previous films (Roger and Me and Bowling for Columbine). Differing from his previous films Moore spends less time in front of the camera and more time behind it instead. He relies on video footage of elected officials, home movies and the true stories of American soldiers and their loved ones at home to hammer his message home, the message that this war in Iraq shouldn’t have occurred in the first place.
However, Moore’s message gets sidelined somewhat midway through the film as he begins to talk to a mother of a soldier in Moore’s hometown of Flint Michigan. Moore has used his hometown of Flint in both Roger and Me and Bowling for Columbine as an example of a town destroyed by the corporate giant. By now frankly I have to say his rant about how wonderful Flint used to be is getting old. In Moore’s defense it is easy to return home to help prove your theory right, but in this case, I was hoping he would branch out a little more and try some different cities.
Liberal, Conservative, Democrat, Republican, Independent, or just don’t care, this film is something you should check out. Don’t say it’s bad just because others in your political party have told you it is. Don’t let the media make up your mind for you. Go check out Fahrenheit 9/11 and see for yourself. Is Moore’s documentary biased? Of course it is. Show me a documentary in the world that is 100% bias free. They may exist, but they are hard to come by. You never know you just may learn something that will confirm your political views, sway your political views or do neither. What does it hurt to have fun in a theater, get a few good laughs and enjoy learning for once? There are few chances in the life that allow you to eat popcorn, watch 35mm film and learn something. This is a special case. Go jump in a line and check it out. If you skip every other documentary made this year, make sure you head out to the theaters and catch this one. Love it or hate it, you won’t be sorry that you lost a few extra bucks.