ew York Times movie critic A.O. Scott clearly had a liberal itch to scratch in his movie reviews Friday. Steven Soderbergh’s High Flying Bird is about an N.B.A. rookie caught in a long strike who has a vision of fighting the league’s entrenched ownership. His take? “A Thrilling Slam Dunk Against Capitalism.” (Reminder: Scott is employed by a billion dollar organization,the New York Times Co.) Neither did he approve of Liam Neeson's new thriller: "I’m not accusing 'Cold Pursuit' of being casually sexist or accidentally racist. On the contrary: Its misogyny and racism strike me as perfectly deliberate..."
On October 12, the movie Gosnell: The Trial of America’s Biggest Serial Killer debuted in 673 theaters on October 12, and grossed $1.2 million in its first weekend. But The Washington Post offered no review for its debut, although it was showing in eight Virginia theaters and six in Maryland. The New York Times offered reviews of 15 new movies that day, but not the pro-life one. The only major paper that reviewed it, the Los Angeles Times, lamented it had "a sanctimonious tone that’s anything but subtle.”
New York Times reporter Astead Herndon seethed over the rapturous reception granted to conservative activist Dinesh D’Souza’s latest documentary, Death of a Nation: “Film Likens Democrats To Nazis, to Big Applause.” Compare that horrified evisceration to the rapturous, unchallenging reception the paper gave far-left documentarian Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 9-11, his anti-Bush conspiratorial release in 2004.
Friday's New York Times promoted what they called "A buddy movie about Communism," reviewed by film critic A.O. Scott. It was somehow an occasion for whimsey. Marx and Engels became "the Mick Jagger and Keith Richards of the European left, rock stars for an age of revolution." They "look and act like pioneers of brocialism." Scott even said the jury was still out on the history of Marxism, "bloody and contentious and not yet finished."
The New York Times’ most doctrinaire movie critics, Manohla Dargis and A.O. Scott, had another tiresome conversation hosted in Sunday’s edition injecting race, class, and feminist politics into the theatre-going experience: “When Even the Movies Can’t Unite Us.” They examined the fall and winter movie crop and found “while some of the season’s new movies will offer relief from real-world troubles (that’s entertainment!), others will invariably engage the cultural and social division, suspicion and recrimination that afflict the present moment.”
New York Times film critics A.O. Scott and Jason Zinoman remember horror zombie master George Romero on the front of Tuesday Arts page, “Old Master of Horror -- In George Romero’s signature zombie films, the living make for their own fright show.”
The latest conversation from the joyless liberal New York Times movie critics A. O. Scott and Manohla Dargis tacked race and class. The online headline was provocative to the point of offensiveness: “Watching While White: How Movies Tackled Race and Class in 2016.” Dargis, the more radical of the two, proclaimed herself pleased that Hollywood isn’t telling quiet as many lies about American greatness and white superiority, and asserted that "Movie critics, who are largely white and male (see the numbers!), seem stubbornly reluctant to engage with race, at least as it pertains to whiteness."
The New York Times humorless, bean-counting movie critics Manohla Dargis and A.O. Scott surveyed the fall film season under this pair of judgmental headlines: “Hollywood, Separate and Unequal – The history of American film is the history of American racism.” Dargis and Scott have a regular tag-team movie-ruining-gig: In March they focused their judgmental Oscar coverage on racism and reveled in “Watching a White Academy Squirm.” In the summer of 2015 they indulged in joyless feminist politics. Dargis, a movie critic supposedly concerned about aesthetics over all, is even prepared to deny artistic achievement in the name of racial and gender bean-counting. The text box is ominous: “Insisting on the sanctity of art can just be another way of shutting our eyes and denying ugly systemic realities.”
New York Times movie critics Manohla Dargis, A.O. Scott, and Wesley Morris blessed readers with an even sillier than usual Oscar racism recap in Tuesday's paper: “Watching a White Academy Squirm.”
A conservative critic can locate a fascinating ideological subtext in several articles in the Weekend Arts I section of Friday’s New York Times.
That subtext is that the Left’s warnings about impending corporate fascism are forever timely, even as they are wielded by dead Communist screenwriters, 75-year-old hippie folk singers still nostalgic for Vietnam, 70s rock singers who had wrote anthems for the Sandinistas, and cool-tempered crackpots from MIT.
They're at it again. New York Times movie critics A.O. Scott and Manohla Dargis once again drained the fun out of another slate of summer action flicks, smothering the popcorn with a heavy dose of stale feminist politics in "Heroines Triumph at Box Office, but Has Anything Changed in Hollywood?," their latest turgid annual summer movie diatribe against sexism in Hollywood. Liberal feminist male critic (Scott), who once called Michael Moore "a credit to the Republic," debated ultra-liberal feminist female film critic (Dargis), who celebrated "watching Charlize Theron lead a revolution against a decadent pasty patriarchy" in the new Mad Max movie, and "a rising activism or maybe newfound gutsiness in the industry that echoes the resurgent feminism we’ve seen on college campuses and elsewhere."
At this point in George W. Bush's presidency, Hollywood uncorked a barrel of anti-Iraq-war movies, all of them in their varying styles trashing the American military or intelligence agencies as vicious murderers, rapists, and all-around freedom-tramplers. Most were duds because the public wanted nothing to do with those messages. But oh, did the critics love 'em.
In Obama's "fourth quarter," as he calls it, Clint Eastwood has released his movie "American Sniper," starring Bradley Cooper as Chris Kyle, a NAVY Seal who survived four tours of duty in Iraq and was credited with an astonishing 160 confirmed kills. The story ended horribly in 2013, four years after he left the Navy, when he and a friend were shot down at a Texas shooting range. Oh, how the critics hate it.