David Simon‘s “Under The Influence” piece about Paths of Glory sppeared two and a half years ago, but I somehow missed it until tonight [Tuesday, 1.5].

What Simon says is so spare, eloquent and well-honed that it made me want to watch Stanley Kubrick‘s 1957 classic yet again, and I’ve seen it at least 15 or 20 times.

Simon: “[It’s been said] that every time you set out to make an anti-war film, it ends up being a war film. There are very few films that stay in the pocket of souring you on war. The suffering is so heroic, the characters are so vibrant, and everything matters…it’s so dramatic. All the Marines I knew from doing Generation Kill, they all loved to do the dialogue from Full Metal Jacket. There’s something about the camaraderie of war that undercuts every anti-war message.

“But not Paths of Glory. Maybe because it’s not strictly an anti-war film…it’s an anti-authority film.”

The more HE readers try to to goad me into watching all 60 episodes of The Wire, the more determined I am to resist. I’m even more determined right now. I’ve seen four or five episodes; I’ll see the other 55 at a time of my own choosing.