Sicko, US Vs John Lennon, 300 & Spiderman 3

20 Aug

Apologies for making a personal posting today. Bear with me while I try to make a coherent essay about 4 recent films that I have seen, in rapid succession within the last couple of days.

While one can enjoy the muscle and action flicks of 300 and Spiderman 3 with its testosterone-driven action scenes complete with advanced state of the art graphics, I fear that the “hidden” messages is more reflective of our times.

In 300, the battle between the Spartans led by the King scarily reminds me of Mr Bush with his rhetoric of war for freedom or democracy. Even though I do feel that the director desperately wants us to emphathise with the muscular sod. That is not to say that the Persian King who thinks he is God, and dressed like a witch with piercings all over his face, is Mr Kindness personified (or is he? Since he offers Mr Spartan King peace, but only if he agrees to kneel in front of him).

Spiderman 3, on the other hand, has a more “human” theme as compared to the previous episodes. Peter Parker aka Spiderman becomes arrogant when a black crawley mutant devours his suit . His enemies are Mr Sandman and the black spider with super-extraordinary powers that he manages only to defeat after he enlists the help of his previous friend turned foe. The director is telling us that for all the good that we have done, we may commit some wrong-doings along the way (and vice versa) … and arrogance is just bad for your soul!

Sicko, Michael Moore’s latest documentary about the healthcare system in the US sends a chill right down my spine when I see the numerous cases of Americans being rejected medical aid due to the fact that a) either they couldn’t afford it or b) the insurance companies refuse to pay. With this documentary, I’m even more convinced that healthcare, along with other necessities such as social welfare and education should be made universal and free.

And speaking of the universal theme of freedom, US Vs John Lennon, provides an interesting albeit in my humble opinion, a rather too lengthy documentary on John Lennon’s brush with the US administration. It highlights Lennon and Yoko’s peace efforts such as their bed in protests, the concerts they sing in support for John Sinclair, their friendships with radical activists such as Abbie Hoffman, and their brush with the Immigration and Naturalization department in the US. To realise that the US administration is wary of John Lennon and getting the FBI to conduct surveillance on the popular pop singer makes one wonder how widespread appeal the man must have in America during those times.


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