10.25.2010

Death of a President

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I ran across this film when Netflix recommended it to me last week.  It's a very interesting mock documentary about what would happen if someone had assassinated George W. Bush when he was president.  The film has some very interesting things to say about the war on terror and also hints at the power of a "Shadow Government" since the fake assassination is used for some dubious purposes.

Click here to watch the entire film for free.




Brought to you by The World of Cinema

10.22.2010

NA 245 Film

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In reference to the Heroin story Adam and John covered, the actual events in the film American Gangster were referenced.





And if you can get past the buddy film packaging, the film Air America (1990) is quite interesting and covers a similar topic...the government having private contractors ship drugs out of a country we are at war with.





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10.18.2010

The History of the "Oil Cabal" (part 5)

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Part five of this documentary series (Crude Diplomacy) is my favorite.  We get the story of the booming post-World War II American economy and the importance of oil as a substance that is driving that economy.  This is also the time period when oil production shifts to the Middle East.  And I think we can all agree that this shift was a good idea and brought us no political problems whatsoever.  This 52-minute episode deals with Middle East kings and their dynasties, US Presidents and their political gambles and how the British government moved into Iran.




Brought to you by The World of Cinema

10.12.2010

House of Numbers: Anatomy of an Epidemic

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Sickness prevented me from posting the Monday movie until today, but I picked quite a controversial one to make up for it.  Adam mentioned this film ages ago on No Agenda (I have no idea which one) and I just finally caught it on DVD through a friend.  It is called House of Numbers.  Here is the description from the films website:
"In House of Numbers: Anatomy of an Epidemic, an AIDS film like no other, the HIV/AIDS story is being rewritten. This is the first film to present the uncensored POVs of virtually all the major players; in their own settings, in their own words. It rocks the foundation upon which all conventional wisdom regarding HIV/AIDS is based. House of Numbers could well be the opening volley in a battle to bring sanity and clarity to an epidemic gone awry."
If you have not read anything about this film, then I suggest watching it first and making up your own mind.  Once you have seen it, there is a plethora of interesting articles on the web.
Trailer:

10.04.2010

Zardoz

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If this picture doesn't make you want to see this film then trust me, the trailer below will!  John recommended this fiction film from 1973 on Sunday's show...and it truly is a cult classic.  It was made on a budget of 1 million dollars and it certainly looks like it.

If you haven't seen it then I would recommend watching it without watching the preview or reading the plot synopsis.

Plot (from Wikipedia):

In the year AD 2293, a post-apocalyptic Earth is inhabited mostly by the "Brutals", who are ruled by the "Eternals" who use other "Brutals" called "Exterminators", "the Chosen" warrior class. The Exterminators worship the god Zardoz, a huge, flying, hollow stone head. Zardoz teaches:


"The gun is good. The penis is evil. The penis shoots seeds, and makes new life to poison the Earth with a plague of men, as once it was, but the gun shoots death, and purifies the Earth of the filth of brutals. Go forth . . . and kill!"

The Zardoz god head supplies the Exterminators with weapons, while the Exterminators supply it with grain. Meanwhile, Zed (Sean Connery), an Exterminator, enters Zardoz, hidden in a load of grain, and shoots (and apparently kills) its pilot, Arthur Frayn (Niall Buggy) (identified as an Eternal in the story's prologue), and travels to the Vortex. The Vortices are hidden communities of civilization where the immortal "Eternals" lead a luxurious but aimless existence.

Arriving in the Vortex, Zed meets two women Eternals — Consuella (Charlotte Rampling) and May (Sara Kestelman) — with psychic powers; mentally overcoming him, they make him prisoner of their community. Consuella wants Zed destroyed immediately; others, led by May and a subversive Eternal named Friend (John Alderton), insist on keeping him for study.

In time, Zed learns the nature of the Vortex. The Eternals are overseen and protected from death by the Tabernacle, an artificial intelligence. Given their limitless lifespan, the Eternals have grown bored and corrupt: the needlessness of procreation has rendered the men impotent; meditation has replaced sleep; others fell to catatonia, forming the social stratum the Eternals name the "Apathetics". The Eternals spend their days stewarding mankind's vast knowledge, while doing little other than participating in communal navel gazing rituals. To give time and life some meaning, the Vortex developed complex social rules, whose violators are punished with artificial aging — condemning them to eternal old age and the status of "Renegade".

Moreover, Zed is less brutal than the Eternals think him. Genetic analysis reveals Zed is the ultimate result of long-running eugenics experiments devised by Arthur Frayn — the Zardoz god — who controlled the outlands with the Exterminators, thus coercing the Brutals to supply the Vortices with grain; yet Zardoz's aim was breeding a superman who would penetrate the Vortex and save mankind from its perpetual status quo. Earlier, the women's analysis of Zed's mind reveals that in the ruins of the old world, Arthur Frayn led Zed to the book The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, from which Zed understands the origin of the name Zardoz — Wizard of Oz — bringing him to a true awareness of Zardoz as a skillful manipulator rather than an actual deity.

As Zed divines the nature of the Vortex and its problems, the Eternals use him to fight their internecine quarrels. Led by Consuella, the Eternals decide to kill Zed and to age Friend. Zed escapes and, aided by May and Friend, learns the Eternals' knowledge and the Vortex's origin in order to destroy the Tabernacle. Zed helps the Exterminators invade the Vortex and kill most of the Eternals—who welcome death and freedom from their eternal but boring existence. Some Eternals escape the Vortex's destruction, heading out to a new life among the Brutals.

Zardoz ends in a wordless sequence of images accompanied by Beethoven's Seventh Symphony. Zed and Consuella, dressed in matching green suits, sit next to each other in the cave-like stone head and age in time-lapse. A child appears, grows, and leaves his parents. Eventually the couple turn into skeletons.

Here's the trailer: