Wednesday, June 02, 2004
THE GECKO SEZ:
Heya! So your friendly local marmoulak is back again, just gots ta tapdance somethin' out on this Michael Boore fellow who'se been rollin' around lately covered in goop.... er I mean hosannas ladled upon him by the high priests of infotainment at the Church of Cans, where they worship golden palm trees upon red carpets and croisettes, or sumthin' like dat. OK, so like, here's what I got.
Mr. Boore got a massive ovation for his documentary film, because they all believed it was the absolute best film of the hundreds in competition. So I'm sure it's just gots ta be a pretty good flick at least, and they were all so filled with adoration that a film of the genre "documentary" would be so absolutely wonderful that it takes the top prize, which is like pretty unusual or somethin'. Becuz like, documentaries generally tells us about history or the natural world (like geckos!) or plate tectonics or expansion of the universe or stuff like that. They are s'posed ta document stuff, right?... and hence the name! Like in a bookstore, ya gots fiction, non-fiction.... so in flicks ya gots love stories & horror movies, and then ya gots documentaries! Ya followin' so far?
Right, so we got this Mr. Boore comin' along, and he likes to just make stuff up - which should mean it's like horror or love story right? At least I think it should go like that. Or if we think of a newspaper like Mr. Michael says right here - if they write what really happened and what people actually said, that's the news part. And if they just write what they think instead of what happened, like President Bush is a big dumb chimpy lying Shrub inarticulate shrubby Chimp imperialist, then that's like, an editorial right? I think I got it straight there. So, the news is like a documentary, and the editorial is like Stephen Spielberg or somethin'. Except Schindler's List I guess.
Now Agam doesn't have good bandwidth so we didn't see this video yet. But apparently Evan Coyne Maloney pointed out to Moore that his films are more like video editorials. Moore responded:
"Yeah, it's like an op-ed piece in the newspaper. These are my opinions. I'm very up front about them. I don't try and disguise them. I don't try to present them as objective news. They're not. They're very subjective."OK so now I'm confused. He bathed himself in all that goop.... er I mean praise for his documentary film, when in fact it's just his opinion. It may even be considered as an editorial for a paid political party. It's just like when newspapers print editorials on the news page, and disguise it as news. Man Agam and I hate it when they do that.
But wait, there's more. Mr. Boore loves publicity so when he got to the Church of Cans he started whining that a big bad corporation called Disney was limiting his free speech by blocking his "documentary" at the last minute, and so the suffering American folks won't be gettin' enlightened. His agent told a paper that evil forces had phoned dire warnings to the big bad corporation that could be traced back to the governor of the Disneyworldland State, who's the brother of the president Mr. Boore hates in his "video editorial". Except nobody phoned dire warnings to the mouseketeers, nobody else but the agent ever said so, but it was printed once and then every other media in the land repeats it as if it's noooooze, eh? In fact dire warnings would have been silly, because the mouseketeers told Mr. Boore more than a year ago, long before his "video editorial" was even finished that they didn't want anything to do with it. They especially didn't want to be involved in a big paid political advertising "video editorial" on any side during an important election year. So they told him to find a different distributor for his "opinions" a way long time ago before he was even finished forming them, but he went to Church of Cans whining to the priests like it just happened yesterday. "Boo hoo, my "video editorial opinion" is all finished and ready to go, and it's going to kill Shrubby Chimp dead dead dead and now they want to censor me! Boo hoo hoo, that evil cabal, boo hoo hoo!"
Oh yea, I almost forgot. Cox and Forkum the most excellent editorial cartoonists and who understand what "editorial" means because they use it in their cartoons, went to the trouble of looking up "documentary" in the American Heritage Dictionary, just to be sure. It says, "Presenting facts objectively without editorializing or inserting fictional material, as in a book or film." Editorialize is defined as: "To present an opinion in the guise of an objective report." So dere.
But wait, there's more. There's a writer named Fred Barnes who seems like a sensible guy. He's the editor of a conservative magazine called Weekly Standard, but I just bet he knows the difference between editorials and news anyway. He also has a humourous vignette to tell about Mr. Boore:
A FEW YEARS AGO Michael Moore, who's now promoting an anti-President Bush movie entitled Fahrenheit 9/11, announced he'd gotten the goods on me, indeed hung me out to dry on my own words. It was in his first bestselling book, Stupid White Men. Moore wrote he'd once been "forced" to listen to my comments on a TV chat show, The McLaughlin Group. I had whined "on and on about the sorry state of American education," Moore said, and wound up by bellowing: "These kids don't even know what The Iliad and The Odyssey are!"Like I said, I'm sure Farenheit 911 must be very entertaining and well edited - after all it's an editorial or op-ed subjective opinion from a guy who likes to make stuff up about what other people tell him. Must be a hoot! In fact Agam showed me a picture yesterday that some other blogger found on Boore's site, where he's talking to a little short, balding middle aged rent-a-guard security guy wearing a blue uniform shirt with a "Security-is-Us" patch on the pocket, standing on a sidewalk, and in the caption Mr. Boore says it's a "Secret Service agent" blocking him from the Saudi embassy! Anyway I'm sure it must be fun to hang out with the guy, it must be a hoot! If you really need more insight into the actual character of the man, here's a poor reporter trying to score an interview with the great one. Patience, my good man. Try and avoid the great one's paramilitary bodyguards, and once you get in close, beware if he turns suddenly that his pride-of-Hollywood boobies don't knock you over! Heh, great one, geddit?
Moore's interest was piqued, so the next day he said he called me. "Fred," he quoted himself as saying, "tell me what The Iliad and The Odyssey are." I started "hemming and hawing," Moore wrote. And then I said, according to Moore: "Well, they're . . . uh . . . you know . . . uh . . . okay, fine, you got me--I don't know what they're about. Happy now?" He'd smoked me out as a fraud, or maybe worse.
The only problem is none of this is true. It never happened. Moore is a liar. He made it up. It's a fabrication on two levels. One, I've never met Moore or even talked to him on the phone. And, two, I read both The Iliad and The Odyssey in my first year at the University of Virginia. Just for the record, I'd learned what they were about even before college. Like everyone else my age, I
got my classical education from the big screen. I saw the Iliad movie called Helen of Troy and while I forget the name of the Odyssey film, I think it starred Kirk Douglas as Odysseus.