Skip to comments.Valor Without Irony
Posted on 03/22/2011 5:38:13 AM PDT by caldera599
This weekend, American soldiers have once again stepped into harms way, as Operation Odyssey Dawn begins in Libya. Coincidentally, were also passing through a pop-culture moment of some significance, as a sizable portion of our cultural elite find themselves strongly at odds with audiences over an unexpectedly popular movie, Battle: Los Angeles.
Pop-culture criticism can be a tricky affair. Critics often praise a film that audiences ignore, or vice versa. Whats interesting in this case is how profound the disconnect has become. Battle: LA passed the $60 million mark at the box office this weekend, but many critics dont just dislike this movie, they hate it.
(Excerpt) Read more at humanevents.com ...
When I used to go to the movies I would make it a point to see movies panned by the critic at the San Jose Mercury News. If he hated it it was sure to be a winner with me. The opposite was true also. Ebert is another contra indicator.
This really is a fine little essay. I like the closing especially well:
Courage is not stupid, sacrifice is not a mistake, and the people of this country have a knack for solving impossible problems.
No wonder our betters have such trouble understanding why so many of us enjoy this movie. Battle: LA reminds us that Marines dont rest, they reload and the Marines are America
“Its not really the aliens that people like Roger Ebert are so upset about. Its the Marines.
“Battle: LA is extremely positive in its portrayal of Staff Sergeant Nantz, his men, and an Air Force tech sergeant they sweep up along the way. They have their moments of doubt and fear, but their bravery and dedication to duty are forged of steel. After a devastating initial encounter with powerful, bloodthirsty enemy forces, they study the foe and learn how to fight back with impressive skill. Their battle cry, whose history Nantz explains to a rescued civilian, is Retreat, hell! They mean it.
“Im a connoisseur of movie moments that convey quiet nobility, simple scenes with minimal dialogue that showcase powerful and eternal values. There is such a moment in Battle: LA, right after Staff Sergeant Nantz rappels out of a helicopter. If youre an average American - especially if youve served in the military, or have loved ones who serve youll be deeply moved. If youre a snide blue-state film critic, youll want to throw up into your popcorn tub.
“Our cultural elites do not know how to handle valor without irony. Their taste runs more to stories like Avatar, where the last decent man in the galaxy turns traitor on the evil military-industrial complex that hired him to be an oppressor. They also underestimate the spirit of the American people, who refuse to lie back in their comfortable caskets and decompose, no matter how often the smart set explains how the best days of the United States are behind it. Courage is not stupid, sacrifice is not a mistake, and the people of this country have a knack for solving impossible problems.
“No wonder our betters have such trouble understanding why so many of us enjoy this movie. Battle: LA reminds us that Marines dont rest, they reload and the Marines are America.”
Spot on. I also carefully read Boston papers and watched TV critics for their opinions. A perfect indication every time. If they rated a movie highly, I did not see it. If they panned it, I probably went that weekend. It is a very good system to use. Saves wasting money.
A reviewer I read said Battle LA is the anti-Avatar. My kids went on Sunday, said it was the best movie this year.
Saw it this weekend...liked the message.
Some of the plot devices were inconsistent, but I’d still recommend this movie.