Washington Post chief film critic Ann Hornaday demonstrated a little too much feminist enthusiasm in her Friday article in the Style section. The headline was “And the summer box office’s big winner is . . . Ruth Bader Ginsburg?” CNN Films made a gushy Ginsburg documentary called RBG that has grossed two million dollars. Somehow, that makes her comparable to an Avengers movie.
These are interesting times for the legacy of Ulysses Simpson Grant. On the one hand, Ron Chernow’s 2017 biography started or furthered a reputational rehabilitation of the 18th president, whose administration was tainted with corruption (though Grant himself was never implicated).
Liberal movie critic Jeannette Catsoulis finally found an "earnest" political message movie she didn’t like -- one with a free-market libertarian bent that happens to match up with the Times’ outlier status as an editorial supporter of the Kelo decision (and, a beneficiary of similar eminent domain abuse). The enraging true story pit homeowner Susette Kelo against the town of New London, Conn., which condemned her private property in order to give it to another private owner, Pfizer, in the name of an economic development plan that failed. Yet Catsoulis turned up her nose at Kelo's plight and whined that such abuse of eminent domain may be "defensible" after all.
In a Friday New York Times op-ed, Neal Gabler, merely described as "writing a biography of Edward Kennedy" to feign neutrality, expressed alarm that "the despicable Kennedy" seen in Chappaquiddick "will eradicate the honorable if flawed real one." Anyone who knows the history, dramatically retold in the movie I saw, can only hope that the actually despicable Massachusetts senator accurately portrayed in the film makes the history books.
How far has the manipulative Kennedy dynasty fallen? Somehow, the movie Chappaquiddick was made with well-known actors, and distributed to movie theaters. Seven years ago, pressure caused the History Channel to deep-six a dramatic Kennedy miniseries (it ended up on the obscure cable channel Reelz). This movie is even drawing favorable reviews from the movie critics.
The Boston Globe's Ty Burr reviewed Chappaquiddick Tuesday, admonishing readers that the movie "might even be accurate." Burr claims that "I'll never know" what really happened the night Ted Kennedy drove off Chappaquiddick Island's Dike Road bridge and left Mary Jo Kopechne to die in his submerged car, "and neither will you." Besides, he insists, though Ted was "flawed but human," he had "endless accomplishments in the Senate."
Following Sunday night’s Academy Awards being filled with nasty left-wing political rhetoric, on NBC’s Megyn Kelly Today on Monday, anchor Megyn Kelly and her panel of guests absurdly praised the Oscars for being “pretty much free of partisan attacks.” Apparently they forgot how host Jimmy Kimmel set the tone of the night by declaring: “We make films to upset Mike Pence.”
Tuesday evening, in reviewing the upcoming movie Chappaquiddick, longtime film critic Roger Friedman called Mary Jo Kopechne, who died in July 1969 as a passenger in a car driven by Massachusetts Senator Ted Kennedy which "went into the water and turned upside down," the "First #MeToo victim of Kennedy Family Money, Power and Corruption." He also speculated: "The Kennedys ... may try to kill this film."
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."
Clint Eastwood did it again with his newest film, The 15:17 to Paris. The 87-year-old icon drove liberal critics batty with his 2014 smash American Sniper. Heroism? Sacrifice? All-American values? It’s like garlic to some film critics. They’d rather swoon at films depicting the U.S. Military in an unsavory fashion.
All too often, talking about the American entertainment industry can be disheartening but especially since President Trump’s election in November 2016 with the rise of the Resistance. Here’s a recent example. As MRC Culture’s Matt Philbin reported on February 4, CBS is developing a TV series based on the life of former Attorney General Eric Holder with Holder himself serving as executive producer.
Katherine Graham, the late publisher of The Washington Post, is legend in their newsroom. Not to mention in Hollywood, which has just turned out a glitzy tribute to Mrs. Graham, starring Meryl Streep as the publisher who, with executive editor Ben Bradlee, fought the Nixon administration over the release of the Pentagon Papers. Now the very same paper rallied against releasing the Nunes memo.