Sunday, October 17, 2004

Conservative Film Festival

Went a Conservative Film Festival today. Four films were screened:

Confronting Iraq - Director Roger Aronoff was on hand to take some Q&A. Wider distribution of this film is coming as well as the DVD and an extended 2-disc DVD version. Before the movie started, I was listening to a gentleman explain to his grandson the importance of the war in Iraq and I gleaned this quote..."I don’t care if we didn’t find a loaded shotgun over there. Saddam needed to go and the world’s better for it." Hear, hear!

Stolen Honor - This is the film that Sinclair Broadcast Group plans to run on its affiliates before the election. Throughout the film, decorated men who served in Vietnam, several of whom were POWs, tell very powerfully how, in their view, John Kerry's anti-war actions both aided the enemy and robbed returning veterans of the honor they deserved. Following the screening, a veteran helo-pilot spoke and took questions. He was a classmate of John O'Neill, author of Unfit for Command, at the U.S. Naval Academy. He served in the same operating area as Kerry and around the same time, flying some 700 missions. He had some interesting stories to tell.

Voices of Iraq - This was, for me, the most powerful film. It was nothing but amateur film of Iraqis, in their own words, talking about life under Saddam, life after Saddam, and the future of their country. Their views are mixed, but at least now, they can express their views freely. The filmmakers distributed 150 digital video cameras to people across Iraq. They interview their families, friends, fellow citizens, and leaders. It's pretty remarkable. One other sad thing to see is that, interspersed throughout the film, some of the pessimistic headlines that have run in American newspapers appear on the screen in stark contrast to what the film itself reveals. Of course, everyone knows the press doesn't report the good news. This just makes that all-the-more real. I don't understand it. Well, actually I do, but it bothers me.

Celsius 41.11 - This is obviously a response to Michael Moore's despicable film. It doesn't rebut his film point by point, but it does counter (with facts) his absurd claim that "there is no terrorist threat".

I was glad to get to see these documentaries. I was somewhat surprised Market Street agreed to host the event (even though they put up no signs and it looked like the radio station had to provide their own projector and sound equipment). This theater primarily shows indie films, arthouse pictures, and left-leaning documentaries. Hopefully, (and I'll probably send a letter or call) the managment will realize that they would get more business if they offered more variety and actually promoted it. This was the first time I'd ever watched anything there. There's certainly enough competition among local theaters that they could use some extra customers.

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