Fahrenheit 9/11
Starring:
George W. Bush, our politicians, and our soldiers
Directed By :
Michael Moore
Grade
A

Synopsis: This is a documentary tracing the events from Bush's election through the war in Iraq up to the nearly present day handing over of Iraq to its own newly formed government. It details the facts connecting the Bush and Bin Laden families and illustrates some of Bush's activities that will have the politically inattentive and uneducated questioning Bush's motivations during his Presidency.

Evaluation: Fahrenheit 9/11 is like a good speech. It takes a lot of facts and presents them through one viewpoint to make a point. Much like a good speech, if you're dead-set against the point it's trying to make, it can't really change your mind. But if you're at all open to the idea, or up-in-the-air, it will make an extremely effective case. In the example of Fahrenheit 9/11, I think the point is that Bush is not a man the American people can trust in office, and we need to make sure he doesn't get re-elected. The film is not a character attack so much as it runs on an anti-war platform. Well, perhaps not even that. The film just points out the gravity of a wartime situation, and shows what the young people comprising the bulk of our soldiers are having to endure while the politicians that sent them there are comfortable back at home. So the point is to be damn sure you need to go to war, and go for the right reasons. The film demonstrates some of the connections the Bush family has in the political and business worlds, and how those connections have shaped the dealings of the families, basically calling into question the ethics of everyone involved. Moore then illustrates how these same patterns have shown themselves in the war in Iraq, calling into question our real reasons for being there, and Bush's real reason for going to war. And the film shows how all this is at the expense of the American people, the little guys, while (big) businesses and corporations are going to make a mint out of this.

I won't go into any more detail on what's in the film, but suffice to say that Moore did his homework, connecting Bush and his friends like a giant Mafia family who looks after their own no matter what trouble they get in to. Sure, the film is edited and narrated from one man's viewpoint, but the facts are irrefutable (checked by several independent teams prior to release), and believe me, Bush's publicity team has been working overtime to skirt this stuff and keep it buried for the length of his Presidency. They even used their political and business connections to try and prevent this film from getting released until AFTER the election…and they very nearly succeeded. So just think, this info must be pretty important to try that hard to suppress it. Go see the film and at least hear Moore out. It's always better to be informed, whether you agree with someone or not.

Who Will This Appeal To?: Anyone anti-Bush will eat this film up, as it shows him at his most incompetent, most self-serving, most clueless, and most inadvertently dangerous. If you care about the direction this country is headed, you'll come out of the film fuming.

Final Verdict: Sure, Moore uses satirical music and wry statements to belittle Bush and his fellow cronies, but even if you're a Bush supporter, you've got to worry about the ramifications of some of his decisions as seen through this film. Check it out to at least get the dirt you'd have to watch hours of C-Span and CNN to filter down to.

Details, details…: The film's title is a reference to the contemporary classic novel Fahrenheit 451 (the temperature at which books are burnt.) In the novel, our futuristic, supposedly perfect society uses 'firemen' to burn books and other educational materials. The government supports activities that keep the population instantly gratified, but complacent. Dumb and happy. Meanwhile a war rages that threatens their nation. And our uneducated populace lacks even the desire to discover what there is to learn, much less actually learn about it. Not a far cry from our "I'll wait for the movie" politically unenlightened society, eh?

- - Jeff Light

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