Vanity Fair Discusses Upcoming 9/11 Movies
I went tonight to check out the article on 9/11 in this month's Vanity Fair (Lindsay Lohan on the cover). The article is primarily focused on two new 9/11 related movies entitled 'Why We Fight' and 'The Unrecovered', and how Michael Moore's 'Fahrenheit 9/11' opened the door for such controversial documentaries. While the majority of the article was rather tame in covering anything outside of the official story, there were a few snippets I thought I should share.
Title and sub-title:
THROUGH A LENS, DARKLY
By taking the gloves off the documentary, Michael Moore opened the door for such gut-punching movies and Why We Fight - which exposes the military-industrial complex's reign of fear and post-9/11 coup d'etat - and The Uncovered, a piercing of the veil that enshrouds the World Trade Center attack.
Snippets on Why We Fight:
With a chronological arc stretching from W.W. II to the present, Why We Fight may sound like an audio-visual survey course. It is, and it isn't. The historical backdrop provides the overture to its inflection point, its pivotal spike: September 11, 2001. It is a day that refuses to lie flat in the pages of history. Like Fahrenheit 9/11, Why We Fight attempts to part the billowing clouds of a waking nightmare to trace and fathom the jagged line that led from the Twin Towers to the toppled statue of Saddam Hussein. How the hell did we get from here to there? How did a campaign to avenge 9/11 and overthrow the Taliban detour into the way-Off-Broadway production of "Shock and Awe"? Why We Fight's answer is no Cracker Jack-box surprise: American foreign policy was commandeered by a scrum of neoconservative ideologues who had been biding their time under President Clinton and slid into positions of power at the behest of Cheney and Rumsfeld after Bush's election in 2000. It was a slow-motion coup d'etat. The neocon hawks were now able to implement what they had been propounding in print for years: transformational change to clear out the deadwood of despotic regimes and convert former adversaries into American franchises.
[..] Why We Fight tracks the journey of a retired New York City cop named Wilton Sekzer [..]. On that bright, pellucid September morning in 2001 [..] Sekzer looks out the window [..] and sees that one of the towers is pouring smoke. His son Jason works at the World Trade Center, and Sekzer realizes that if his son is still inside he's a goner. He was. [..]
Stewing with a desire for justice and payback, Sekzer - Why We Fight's Everyman figure - petitions the military to honor his son's memory by stenciling his name on one of the bombs earmarked for Iraq. When his wish is granted and a 2,000-pound guided munition bearing his son's name ("In loving memory of Jason Sekzer") is dropped hitting God knows what and killing God knows whom, Sekzer is grateful - only to be dumbfounded when Bush admits at a press conference that there was no evidence Saddam Hussein had a hand in 9/11. "I almost jumped out of the chair. 'I don't know where people got the idea that I connected Iraq to 9/11.' What, is he nuts, or what? What'd the hell we go in there for? We're getting back for 9/11. Well if he [Hussein] didn't have anything to do with 9/11 why're we going in there?" Why, indeed.
What's strange is that, after the initial orgy of endless replay, 9/11 footage has entered the realm of taboo. [..] so much of what happened that day [..] has been sanitized [..], filed away in the video vault, flushed down the memory hole. [..] When TV runs a library clip of the towers falling, it's usually a high-altitude telephoto shot that confers grandeur from afar. The collapse looks stately, self-contained, silently majestic - shrouded in inevitability. [..] The climactic fall appears self-actuating, as if the buildings had wearied of their own existence and detonated themselves. [..] The events of 9/11 inflicted the most visible trauma in mankind's history, and yet a veil has been dropped over it, as if Americans must hug the official findings of the 9/11 commission and keep their mitts off Pandora's box.
Snippets on The Unrecovered:
Roger Copeland's The Unrecovered peels off the protective lid to let out dark thoughts and speculations. [..] Copeland became obsessed by the conspiracy theories and counter-narratives that spidered out of 9/11 (emerging in documentaries such as The Great Deception) and got busy on a fictional treatment. [..] The title, The Unrecovered, refers to the bodies that were never recovered at Ground Zero, lives that were never recovered at Ground Zero, lives that were seemingly zapped out of existence in an apocalyptic flash and endure only as ghosts of memory. [..] The whole movie is a haunting, incorporating actual footage of bodies falling from the W.T.C. towers like stricken birds to spook us to a higher recognition of what true shock and awe looks like.
[..]still confounded at how the grief and fury of 9/11 propelled us into the jaws of Iraq with the job left unfinished in Afghanistan. Afghanistan's stealth disintegration is the subject of investigative reporter Michele Mitchell's in production documentary, The Good War, which stations itself at the bloody intersection where warlords, contractors, and mercenaries do business with death, and the trickle of similar documentaries about the War on Terror promises to grow torrential. When George Bush was re-elected, in 2004, some pundits gleefully interpreted it as a repudiation of Fahrenheit 911, proof that Michael Moore and everything he bulkily represents had been rejected by "real Americans." Now a majority of those polled agree with Moore's stance about the Iraq war and accept his accusation that we were deliberately misled. They've come around. In a time of deception, documentaries like Moore's and Jarecki's are dangerous weapons, packing the conviction and firepower of Bob Dylan's "Masters of War," a protest song that - sadly - never goes out of date.
Thanks C for the heads up about the article!