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Notes from the back row

"What have you done?"

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Okay kids, time to lay it down. Whistler’s best filmmaker just recently asked us, "What have you done to change the world today?" Well, if you aren’t sure what to answer to that question then just say, "I talked shit about the ridiculousness of the American Government. And I spread the good word: Those warmongers should be stopped." That’s a real start. And even Hollywood, despite the fact that they’re totally in bed with Big-Business America, is starting to do the same.

Case in point, Wolfgang Peterson’s new war epic, Troy. Little did any of the financial backers know, it’s actually a clever parallel to the sticky situation our friends to the south have gotten themselves into over there in the desert.

Brad Pitt’s ass aside, here it is: Troy is about a power hungry Grecian King named Agamemnon who is just looking for any excuse to take total control over the entire Aegean sea (which was considered the World back then.) Sounds a lot like our good buddy G.W. Bush who probably can’t spell Aegean but would really like to control the entire world. Agememnon is using the real situation, (his brother’s wife is getting tapped by someone else,) as an excuse to bring his personal goals to the forefront.

Now don’t get me wrong, stealing another man’s woman is bad, so’s flying an airplane into corporate America. But it’s not the best reason for invading a country and slaughtering innocent people is it? Yeah, I think so too.

Anyhow, next you have Hector, Prince of Troy, Agememnon’s enemy, who says, "I won’t go to war for one man’s greed." And he isn’t sold on the old, "It’s the will of the gods" argument either. Hector is basically representing the objective moral person like you and I. Who wants to die for Bush’s oil interests? Not me.

So the real star of Troy is Achilles, played by Brad Pitt. Achilles’ deal is that he’s the greatest warrior in the world (ie: the American Troops) but he’s not fighting for his king, or his country, or anything but his own place in history: his ego. He wants to be known as the best ever and he’ll go against what he knows is right to make sure everyone remembers him as such. Sounds like American patriotism to me.

So at the end of the movie, Troy is sneakily sacked and the Grecian soldiers savagely ransacked and looted the once-beautiful and dignified country of Troy.

It’s reminiscent of the last time the Americans were involved in Iraq and they torched every power plant and water treatment plant they could find. Who cares about shit like the environment and disease, we won!

Hey idiots, there are no winners in war. Ask the people who have to live in Iraq for the rest of their lives.

Director Wolfgang Peterson isn’t afraid to say what he really feels, he just slips it into a canned-drama, high action summer blockbuster. Well good for him. It’s about time filmmakers started using their influence a bit more.

Like Michael Moore. His movie, Farenheit 9/11, got dropped by his distributors at Miramax because Disney, Miramax’s parent company, claims they don’t want to get into partisan politics in an election year. Moore says it’s because W.’s brother Jeb Bush is the Governor of Florida and DisneyWorld enjoys numerous tax breaks there. Well that’s a good reason to hide the truth, we need to make money right? What a nice fair world we live in, where honour and truth mean so much.

Add the fact that the next couple big summer blockbusters concern the end of the world as we know it ( The Day after Tommorrow, Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow) and suddenly you no longer want to have kids.

Nothing builds a family stronger than explaining to your five-year-old daughter why she can’t go out in the sun for more than ten minutes or has asthma because hip hop made SUV’s cool. Or why we’re at war defending our water and power from the U.S. market.

Shit honey, if only we’d listened to David Suzuki back in old 2004, or Lauren Graham when she asked, "What have you done to change the world today?"

I pissed at least one person off, what did you do?

At Village 8 May 21 to May 27: Barbarian Invasions, Van Helsing, Shrek 2, Troy, Kill Bill Vol. 2, Mean Girls, Man on Fire

AT Rainbow Theatre May 21 to May 27: Scooby Doo 2

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