Daily Beast Pans 'Richard Jewell' as 'Poisonous Pro-Trump Effort'

December 5th, 2019 10:24 AM

The Daily Beast somehow expects history to be rewritten. Why? Because an accurate portrayal of history could help Donald Trump. 

The history the Daily Beast is upset about is the portrayal of Richard Jewell in the film Richard Jewell as a victim of the FBI and much of the media for being put forward as the suspect in the 1996 Centennial Olympic Park bombing in Atlanta Georgia. The reason for the Daily Beast's discomfort is that they think it makes the film pro-Trump. 

As a result, the Daily Beast film critic, Nick Schager, panned the movie due to filtering it through his TDS lens in "‘Richard Jewell’: Clint Eastwood Declares War on the ‘Corrupt’ Media and FBI." His obsession with Trump begins even before the body of his review in the subtitle, "The filmmaker channels Trump talking points with 'Richard Jewell,' about the titular Centennial Olympic Park bombing hero who was unfairly targeted by journalists and the FBI."

Thank you for admitting that Richard Jewell was indeed unfairly targeted by journalists and the FBI.  However, despite that admission by Schager, he finds that the facts of the case relayed in the film to inconveniently help Trump in making the case for corruption in the FBI and a biased media.

Clint Eastwood’s Richard Jewell wants to be a gripping, outrage-inciting drama about an innocent victim persecuted by—and driven to fight back against—institutional power. Unfortunately, what it turns out to be is a MAGA screed calibrated to court favor with the red hat-wearing faithful by vilifying the president’s two favorite enemies: the FBI and the media.

Eastwood’s cinema has always been anti-establishment. Yet that individualistic ethos has curdled in Richard Jewell (in theaters Dec. 13), a poisonous pro-Trump effort (based on a 1997 Vanity Fair article) that finds the director following in the footsteps of his Sully and The 15:17 to Paris by again recounting the tale of a seemingly ordinary American thrust into gallant duty, only to be unjustly attacked by “horrific forces.” The axis of evil here is FBI agent Tom Shaw (Jon Hamm) and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reporter Kathy Scruggs (Olivia Wilde), two figures who come after portly, unassuming Richard Jewell (I, Tonya’s Paul Walter Hauser) because his discovery of pipe bombs at Centennial Park during the 1996 Olympics puts him at the scene of the crime, and his schlubby wannabe-cop persona matches a “hero bomber” profile. Tyrannical bullying, threats and character assassination follow, with Jewell cast as a patriotic red-state everyman who, for his virtuous efforts, is monstrously mistreated.

So where is the inaccuracy in this portrayal, Nick? He doesn't reveal that. All he is focused on is his belief that it helps Trump.

Richard Jewell was, after initially being hailed a hero, incorrectly pinpointed as the man behind the July 27, 1996, Centennial Park Bombing, which detonated following its discovery beneath Jewell’s bench at the base of a concert sound tower. That Richard Jewell doesn’t imagine make-believe adversaries for Jewell certainly lends it a measure of veracity lacking from its predecessor. Still, that hardly earns it any points, given that at every turn, it makes such a cartoonishly slanted case against the feds and the media that it plays as a politically motivated Trump Twitter rant masquerading as a David-vs.-Goliath thriller.

Again, Nick. Where is the inaccuracy? You yourself admitted above that Richard Jewell  doesn't imagine make-believe adversaries. How is the case "cartoonishly" slanted against the feds and the media? All that Schager seems to see is this movie as a "politically motivated Trump twitter rant."

Schager concludes that Richard Jewell is really just propaganda:

It’s history perverted into propaganda, and thus the very sort of fake news that it—and its target audience—so hypocritically like to decry.

So how has history been "perverted?" Schager doesn't argue with the actual facts of the case presented in the film, only with the broad characterizations which to him fits into pro-Trump "propaganda."