Friday, June 03, 2005

A Comforting Thought

In the past three days since the identity of Deep Throat was revealed by “Vanity Fair” to be W. Mark Felt, we have seen clips and bits and pieces of the movie, “All the President's Men” over and over. The film was based on the book by the same name by Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein and chronicled the scandalous malfeasance of the Richard Nixon presidency, which had been reported by “Woodstein” in the Washington Post. As Jon Stewart said in his June 1 Daily Show segment, the new Deep Throat revelation has let us see the “shlumpy” real-life Woodward/Bernstein duo again instead of the glamorous movie portrayals by Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman. In the future, there will be movies about the scandalous behavior of the Bush administration. And whether, as in “All the President's Men”, the President will be seen as Himself in real news footage, or he will be depicted by an actor, filmmakers will have no choice but to show President Bush as he is. Else, reviewers will point out the discrepancies and will gleefully refer to real news footage of the real George W. Bush who invariably has acted like the mentally impaired fool he is. For certain, among the choice moments in any film about George W. Bush will be his May 31, 2005 press conference in which he blasted Amnesty International's report that his administration had established “a new gulag” of prisons, which didn't conform to laws or accepted rules of decency. It was a low moment for the President of the United States when he branded the report of this respected worldwide organization that fights for human rights, as “absurd”. But George W. Bush outdid himself in proving he's truly a hopeless moron. He said the report was based on “the allegations of people who hate America, people that had been trained in some instances to disassemble-that means not tell the truth.” The stupidity and arrogance of the man is beyond belief and it was caught on film. To wrongly say disassemble instead of dissemble and then to explain the meaning of the word as though his listeners were more stupid than he takes ignorance and hubris to a new level. This most recent moment and his seven minutes of catatonic inaction after he was told of the 9/11 attack are both on film. And these damning flashes of truth will assuredly turn up in any film about GWB's presidency. The difficulty for filmmakers will be in choosing which gaffes and embarrassing moments to use because there are so many. Any film attempting a mythic and glossy view of GWB will have tough going. There is film footage of events when the White House tried to make GWB look heroic…the “Mission Accomplished” fiasco, for instance. But these fake-news productions only show him to be a second-rate actor in a third-rate film. If George W. Bush has any delusions about being remembered as a great president, it's just one more proof he's not in full possession of his faculties. A two-hour movie could be made right now, today, using real film of George W. Bush's blunders, malapropisms, mispronunciations, missteps, ignorant statements, ill-informed explanations, inarticulate rambling and non-sequiturs. And another shorter film could be made showing his gradual decline in the last five years from a vital energetic stupid man to a whining, ineffectual, incoherent stupid man. The definition of a short book used to be, “Italian War Heroes”. That quip can now be replaced with the definition of a short movie: “The Wisdom of GWBush”. There are many who say the events that led up to the demise of the Nixon presidency could never happen today. No newspaper would give reporters the free rein and unlimited time to investigate the story that the WaPo gave Woodstein. That may be true. But it wouldn't be necessary today. The real George Bush, the real shenanigans in the White House, the real scandal of the war in Iraq is all on tape. And it's available to any filmmaker who wants to make a movie.

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