Sunday, October 17, 2004

Moore, Wilson, and SMMASH

On Friday, I attended the local premiere of Michael Moore Hates America at the SMMASH film festival. The film festival continues through Thursday at the Excelsior Dock theaters. I intend to return to the festival to watch a couple more films, including A Real Genius, about a guy who synchronizes the lights of every building in Minneapolis to Beethoven's Ninth Symphony.

Michael Moore Hates America is a very satisfying film, but not for the reasons that the title would suggest. Having Michael Wilson pursue Michael Moore in the same way Moore pursued Roger Smith is an intriguing means to get one to see the film, but the satisfaction comes from other things. Sergeant Peter Damon, a double-amputee veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom is given a chance to rebut his portrayal in Fahrenheit 9/11. The employees of North Country Bank and Trust get a chance to rebut their portrayal in Bowling for Columbine. These rebuttals are nice, but the most satisfying thing is to see that Sergeant Damon is not bitter, either about his war injury or his portrayal in the Moore film. A short clip near the end of the film shows Damon pushing his daughter on a swing set. Not only is this a powerful cinematic moment, but it has the added value of being true. What a perfect counter to the tactics of Michael Moore.

The film opens in local Twin Cities Mann theaters this coming Friday.


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