Wednesday, July 26, 2006

One reason I will see WTC, but did not see United 93 (even though I like United 93's director more)

As any committed reader of this blog knows (sadly, I think I could name them), I took umbrage at the release of United 93 a few months ago. Although I love the director and knew he would be respectful and make a great film (everyone that saw it felt this way), I was concerned for a number of reasons, one of which I will recap here.
My concern here is, unlike most historical films, no one really knows what happened and fiction will become reality. Unlike films such as Bloody Sunday, Schindler's List and Munich, there are no survivors to tell the actual story.
So, we are left to a filmmaker for historical accuracy. It reminds me of the film Perfect Storm, most of which was a guess at best (and without the historical importance).

Unlike the film 25th Hour, the show Third Watch
or Bruce Springsteen's The Rising, which are pieces of art influenced by 9-11 and struggle to tell the story of how this event affected individuals, this purports to be the truth. 30 minutes of a black box are not quite enough for
me. History will be distorted once again, even if the attempt is to tell the story of people that acted heroic. Even an attempt to tell a story of a fictional character dying in 9-11 would be a better approach for my tastes. And, we have plenty of excellent
documentaries telling the days story.
Interestingly, the second 9-11 film (Oliver Stone's World Trade Center) to be released this summer is taking my advice (not that Stone cared or considered my advise before making the film). Instead of tackling politics, controversy or trying to retell a story we all know all too well, Oliver Stone has chosen to tell the events of 9-11 through the eyes of 2 police officers and their families. He has chosen to tell a story we had little time to pay attention to, thus not revising history or changing how we look at the events of the day.

Whatever you or I think of Stone's past conspiracy theories (JFK and Vietnam), one thing has been proven*. When Oliver Stone chooses to use a personal story to relate the viewer to a historical event, showing us how one person (or a small group of people) may have reacted to things in a history book, he succeeds and viewers are blessed (Platoon, Salvador, even Born on the 4th of July). Smartly, he chooses to tell the story of real people, not fictional characters as in Platoon.

incidentally, Rudy mentioned a conservative commentator who recommends this flick. So, everyone will like it. Could there be 2 WTC films nominated for Oscars? You heard it here first. The trailer interests me, as does what seems to be a subdued performance by notorious over-actor Nic Cage.

* (with apologies to gentry for *) were you not scared that an Oliver Stone 9-11 film would journey into serious government conspiracy?

1 comment:

g13 said...

apologies my ass. i want commission!