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ace in the hole… paradise now… and human interest…

July 17, 2006

hmm…
saw this movie about 6 years ago for the first time at a friend’s house and it left a really big impression on me… directed by billy wilder starring kirk douglas… as a part of billy wilder retrospective at film forum, this one was the one i couldn’t miss…
and it was great second time around…
probably i was able to appreciate the movie even better than 6 years ago especially after watching many older movies plus reading a bit more about billy wilder himself…
this is a story about a newspaper man charles tatum who has been fired by many major newspapers around the country for numerous reasons, left only with his cocky attitude and desire to go back to the real town, new york… after working at a newspaper in albuquerque, new mexico for a year, he grabs a chance of his life time when he learns a cave-in accident and encounter the victim, leo minosa… and with his own personal ambition mingled with other people’s desires, this incident creates a media frenzy…
while the story develops, billy wilder shows how greedy and selfish people can be… and how we take many of the news as some sort of entertainment… there’s line kirk douglas says, something like, “it’s better to have one victim than having 18 people because it makes the story more personal”… and you know what, it’s still true… how pathetic is that…? when it’s a bombing in iraq or israel that kills many people, it’s one of yet another bombing… but when it’s a “human interest” story that involves one person, we tend to pay more attention… well, i can only speak for myself… i admit it… after the world cup was over, i was more interested in finding out why zidane butted that italian player than reading what the hell was going on in israel… is it because it’s easier on our conscience…?
also i watched “paradise now” a couple of weeks ago which i absolutely loved… it was about 2 palestinian young boys who are assigned for suicide bombing mission… and the movie depicted both sides of people who live there dealing with the issue in their daily lives… it was very powerful and beautifully made movie…
then i also had to ask myself why does it make bigger impact on me when it was presented to me as some kind of “entertainment”… the same thing goes for “an inconvenient truth”… i’m glad i saw those movies and got to think about those issues at least a few more times than i would have if i hadn’t watched those movies… but also made me feel a bit shamed…
still i think it’s really great that there are many movies dealing with such great subjects… and educate people like me… hmm…

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One Comment
  1. I think we just know too much, see too much, hear too much, have too much information media surrounding/bombarding us, and within seconds we grab information from wherever the hell we want to, on demand or randomly, or both at the same time.And it’s absolutely impossible to know all about the backgrounds and the sources of all that. Seen the fact that all this information is filtered through some major channels worldwide doesn’t makes it easier or better. It’s scary!Question is always: How true is the information you get? You speak about education: Do you really know enough to build your own meaning about something that happens on the other side of the globe, do you really learn anything about that at all?Sloterdijk believes even that the synchronism of all this information channels worldwide, as we use it today, within the effect of conformity of information, would endanger the democracy.Should we just close your eyes and ears then?Aren’t we all, living in the decadent west, anyway responsible for a lot of what goes wrong all-over the world?In fact it’s an old, difficult, philosophical problem, also known as Angeletic, going back to the greeks (as usual).But at least, yes, I agree, a good documentary should give you enough time to think about what you see, and if it’s on a DVD you are even able to switch back or stop the movie for a short reflection. You start thinking about it, and probably, if you’re clever enough, you even get enough “good” additional information to see a bit clearer (what ever that means).There was the great hope in a free, non-elitary, non-filtered information power of the internet, in, let’s say the early 90ies. As we all know today, it was an illusion!Probably it’s just human-being. Reminds me on Canetti: He would simply proof that in the end, no matter in which culture you start researching, it’s all about mass and power (in my opinion connected with the human will of reproduction within all it’s facets).But still, isn’t it nice to chat with strangers, to build your own virtual/artificial social nutshell…? Isn’t it cool to stay tuned with your friends (email, blogs) if you move (wherever you feel like moving) or if you are on tour?Ahem, in fact I should write a text for a design competition right now instead of to act the big hobby philosopher (I have no idea about all that anyway, and my english must be terribly unamusing).Probably, in the end, internet is just time-consuming… hum? Where are you taking all your time for your blog from?But hey, just keep on bloggin’, watching movies and eating shaved ice, like it, and last but not least, play your cello! It’s great!

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