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The point is who's watching out for you
Our democracy does work! Fahrenheit 9/11 just proves it. A regular Joe, a middle-class man can criticize a sitting president in a time of war without any worry of reprisals. Do the same thing in Latin America, Asia, the Caribbean and anywhere else, you can remain certain that your days are numbered. After watching all the efforts to keep this movie out of the box office, I have realized that censorship may work up to a point. It also shows how some major companies are intimidated or even bullied by the economic deals they are searching in a specific time.
Michael Moore is no stranger to picking on the powerful and famous. It's like David vs. Goliath. He did not hesitate to take on the president of the NRA. The voice of Moses ended up talking to him. He studied the map of Hollywood and found his house. You may sometime wonder who is helping him out. When an insurance company refused to authorize a drug for a dying man, he organized a mock funeral complete with a coffin, pallbearers and bagpiping music. The company had to give in to the request. Call it a victory for the small guy. He took on Roger in "Roger and Me." He also took on the powerful NRA group in the movie "Bowling for Columbine." Moore is a man who has a knack at gauging the deepest and most held sentiments of the American public. He packages them in movie and/or documentary formats and sells them to the populace. He is not always easy on his subjects. That explains why he sometimes can't find a proper distribution channel. The publisher of "Stupid White Men" tried to find excuse not to publish the book after the events of 9-11. A librarian found out about it, went to his chat room to inform his colleagues who started flooding the publisher with e-mail. The next thing that happened is history. The book sat on the bestseller list for months.
Michael Moore: The Male Version of Erin Broccovich?
Is Michael Moore watching out for you? Is Bill O'Reilly watching out for you?
In Fahrenheit 9/11, a clear anti-Bush documentary, Mr. Moore openly criticized the president's immediate response to the attacks on the Twin towers and Pentagon. The tone of the documentary leads to question the president's response during these first minutes. Moore wants to the viewer to believe that the president was out of touch and over his head. In other words, he needed to be prodded to action by some outside forces which may be the CIA, FBI or any advisers. He portrays him as not knowing what to do. The movie fails to show that this was Mr. Bush's way of not alarming the children he was reading to. Mr. Bush wanted to spare them the shock of the atrocities on the rest of the nation for 7 minutes. Depending on which side you are on, you will want to read between the lines. There's a gray between Moore's interpretation of the events and the facts of the day. Also, in clear terms, the movie shows the Bush family's ties to the House of Saud. Moore wants you to believe that this may have impeded the president's jump to action.
Walt Disney Co./Miramax
Despite all the boycott by Miramax (Walt Disney Co.), the movie ends up being released thanks to the quick thinking of Mr. Moore and Miramax movie executives Harvey and Bob Weinstein. With packed theaters, the movie raked in $21.8 million in its opening week-end. One may wonder is whether the movie becomes so popular because of all the publicity attacks against it or because it is truly time for the general public to hear something unbecoming about the current administration.
In the movie, Moore interviews a mother who is grieving the death of his son in Iraq. She asks some tough questions no one had an answer to. It's worth noting the movie is popular in army base towns. Sellout crowds are reported in theaters all over the country. So much for those at Disney who refused to release the documentary.
One may wonder what's next for Michael Moore. Until the public finds out, they'll watch this one while getting ready for the next elections in November, 2004. Whether this documentary will influence the voters' decisions remains to be seen. If any lesson should be learned, it is that those who are searching will find kernels of truth on the road. When all other networks shy away from the hard questions, individuals like Moore and Erin B. will stumble upon opportunities that will make them millionaires.