Here is what some of the critics are saying about Fahrenheit 9/11, the new movie from Michigan native Michael Moore.
Christopher Hitchens writes in Slate.com:
“To describe this film as dishonest and demagogic would almost be to promote those terms to the level of respectability. To describe this film as a piece of crap would be to run the risk of a discourse that would never again rise above the excremental. To describe it as an exercise in facile crowd-pleasing would be too obvious. Fahrenheit 9/11 is a sinister exercise in moral frivolity, crudely disguised as an exercise in seriousness. It is also a spectacle of abject political cowardice masking itself as a demonstration of “dissenting” bravery.”
The New York Times weighs in:
“Mostly, though, he sifts through the public record, constructing a chronicle of misrule that stretches from the Florida recount to the events of this spring. His case is synthetic rather than comprehensive, and it is not always internally consistent. He dwells on the connections between the Bush family and the Saudi Arabian elite (including the bin Laden family), and while he creates a strong impression of unseemly coziness, his larger point is not altogether clear.”
The Nation, always supportive, says:
“Moore alleges no conspiracies. He merely says that Bush has motives beyond those he’s willing to state. To make this case, Moore begins by showing that the Bush family in general, and George W. in particular, have received lavish support over the years from the Saudi elite, including the bin Ladens, and have offered valuable help in turn. Unlike the actualities footage that Moore uses in the film, these facts are by now widely known—although it was news to me that Prince Bandar, the Saudi ambassador, had dined with Bush at the White House on September 13, 2001. In speculating about this dinner, and about the subsequent airlifting out of the United States of more than a hundred Saudis when everyone else was grounded, Moore goes only so far as to say that the overwhelmingly Saudi makeup of the September 11 attack teams could have proved embarrassing to Bush. He would not have wanted journalists just then to begin looking into his personal ties to Saudi interests, or to ask whether any useful information had emerged from the two dozen bin Ladens who had been in the country, and whom he soon spirited away without the indignity of questioning.”
The Village Voice opines:
“If Moore is formidable, it’s not because he is a great filmmaker (far from it), but because he infuses his sense of ridicule with the fury of moral indignation. Fahrenheit 9/11 is strongest when that wrath is vented on Bush and his cohorts. Let us not forget that Dana Carvey did more than anyone in America, save Ross Perot, to drive Bush père from the White House. There are sequences in Fahrenheit 9/11 so devastatingly on target as to inspire the thought that Moore might similarly help evict the son. ”
Fahrenheit 9/11 will open at the Michigan Theater on Thursday at Midnight.
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