“The Trolls Among Us,” an 8.3 N.Y. Times Magazine piece by Mattathias Schwartz, is a mildy confusing, difficult-to-read article about a “growing internet subculture with a fluid morality and a disdain for pretty much everyone else online.” Is it fair to call any HE regulars “trolls”? Who are the nihilists? I don’t have a list exactly, but there certainly seems to be an occasional nihilist virus in some of the jottings on this site.
Stephen Frears and Peter Morgan‘s The Deal, which came out on DVD last Tuesday, is about the complex political relationship between Tony Blair (Michael Sheen) and Gordon Brown (David Morrissey), and a reported deal between the two regarding the 1994 election of a new Labor Party leader. I’ve been keen to see it since the early days of The Queen, which is Part 2 of Frears-Morgan Blair trilogy. Frears once told me that The Deal is way too secular to be appreciated by an American audience. Is it?
Commenting on Jon Voight‘s 7.28 anti-Obama article in the Washington Times, Variety editor/blogger Peter Bart wrote yesterday that while he may “appreciate Voight’s fervor,” he worries “about his intellectual equipment.”
Then comes the anecdote, dating back some 38 years: “I remember that moment in the early ’70s when Paramount offered Voight the lead role in Love Story, opposite Ali McGraw. Voight had just achieved stardom thanks to Midnight Cowboy and suddenly had his choice of roles.
“As a young production executive at the studio, I was trying to push Love Story forward and joined colleagues in trying to interest Voight in the part. However the more we prodded, the more reluctant he became.
“He finally blurted: ‘The character in this movie is a Harvard student. He’s bright. He reads books. I could never be believable as that smart young guy.”
“Reading Voight’s op-ed piece these many years later, I realize how right he was.”
Yesterday it took the HE readership 90 minutes to identify the main-title music from The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance. I thought someone would nail it right away, but nope. Here’s today’s main-title clip. (Yes, this is going to be a little game for a while until the tank runs dry.) If someone doesn’t identify this within 30 minutes or less, HE readers are going to have to take a long hard look into the bathroom mirror and ask him or herself, “How much of a hard-core film buff am I?” Because the clip is not obscure. At all.
Last year The Express (Universal, 10.3), an inspirational sport drama about Ernie Davis, the first African-American to win the Heisman Trophy, was being shot on the Syracuse University campus. I know this because Jett, a Syracuse sophomore last year, told me about it. Now the trailer is up. Here’s the Ernie Davis Wikipedia site, if you want to know the whole story.
McCain’s Moses/”The One” ad — hilarious — basically says don’t vote for hope or change or any notion of things being better. Stick with the tried and true and glum way of government. Mind-blowing. Well…revolting, really. But I’ll bet it’s playing with a certain sector of the public.
The ad uses that shaved-down Obama quote thjat popped last weekend, to wit: “I have become a symbol of the possibility of America returning to our best traditions.” The actual Obama quote reads, “It has become increasingly clear in my travel, the campaign — that the crowds, the enthusiasm, 200,000 people in Berlin, is not about me at all. It’s about America. I have just become a symbol.” Naturally, the lying McCain ad guys are using the abridged version.
A CNN report appeared last night on Anderson ‘s news show that seemed a reasonably fair portrait of hunkered-down rural-American attitudes when it comes to beliefs about Barack Obama having been raised a Muslim and/or being a Muslim. Among 50ish and 60ish types, I mean to say. There’s no permalink or embedded code — go to http://www.cnn.com/video/ and then find the report titled “Rumors Stick on Obama’s Faith.”
Reporter Gary Tuchman went to Copperhill, Tennessee, and asked around. He found only one guy who believed Obama is a Christian; everyone else he spoke to believed Obama can’t be rusted and that his interests will be divided between America’s and his Muslim brothers “if he gets in.” Ignorance is not a virus — it’s a choice. You could even call it a kind of faith. Here’s an mp3 of the report.
One beef with Tuchman: when he hears the locals spout their little fairy tales about Obama’s Muslim allegiance, he responds with “but he says that’s not true…he says he’s a Christian.” And the locals go, “Yeah, well…politicians will say anything to get elected.” Obama isn’t saying he’s a Christian — he is one, over and out. Tuchman’s retort is from the same gene pool as Hillary Clinton‘s “he’s not a Muslim as far as I know” line.
When 60 Minutes‘ Steve Kroft heard a group of southern Ohio dumbasses repeat the same beliefs, he said, “It’s not true” — no ifs, and, buts or “he says.”
Tuchman quotes a Newsweek poll, 25% of Americans believe that Obama was born a Muslim, and 12% believe he’s currently a devout Muslim.