Sea of Noise

Sat, 17 Jul 2004

Fahrenheit 9/11 Fails to Excite Another Sympathizer

Brian Doherty's review of Fahrenheit 9/11 at Reason this month makes me suspect that continuing to not see this movie may be more fun than seeing it...

My mind drifted to such fantasies while watching his new hit film because Fahrenheit 9/11 itself is--and this was a genuine surprise to me--so disappointingly dull. It's only the firestorm of discourse surrounding it that has created enough ambient heat to warm this tedious farrago and make it seem palatable. As is blindingly obvious from all the fooferaw surrounding the movie, Fahrenheit 9/11 works as a chemical test whereby your preconceptions can be determined by observing what color you turn upon exposure to it. Those opposed to its thesis of course find it painfully propagandistic and based on some verifiable untruths; those sympathetic manage to smile on it indulgently even while seeing its flaws.

One thing I've been surprised to read, though, that some who see it (c.f. Robert Jensen's essay) are smelling the whiff of racism, or at least racial stereotyping, in the air:

(Indeed, Moore evinces a particularly old-fashioned, Flint, Michigan style hard-hat leftism here, daring the doyens of diversity to attack. Some key bits in Fahrenheit ride on representations of foreigners, whether Saudi or Palauan, as sinister and/or risible merely because they look and dress funny to Middle American eyes.)

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