March 30, 2006

"V for Vendetta"

From my upcoming review in The American Conservative:

A film critic would have to hate George W. Bush awfully bad to praise publicly the ludicrous yet humorless "V for Vendetta," in which a disguised superhero blows up the Houses of Parliament to overthrow the clerico-fascist despotism ruling Britain in 2020. Yet, a big majority of movie reviewers have given their thumbs-up to "V for Vendetta," even though it is just another masochist's fantasy masquerading as a profound political allegory from the Wachowski Siblings, the frauteurs who were to blame for the "Matrix" trilogy.

"V for Vendetta" started out in the 1980s as a "graphic novel" (an expensive, pretentious comic book) by Alan Moore (League of Extraordinary Gentlemen) about how Margaret Thatcher would turn England into a totalitarian dystopia by 1997. Well, that didn't exactly happen, so now the Wachowskis have rewritten it as a post-9/11 fable implying that President Chimpy McHitlerBushton will crush all dissent Real Soon Now. Personally, I'd rather endure a Bush press conference than see this movie again.

Remember director Ridley Scott's famous "1984" Super Bowl commercial introducing the Apple Macintosh? Now, imagine that 45-second spot dragged out over 132 minutes. In "V for Vendetta," the Big Brother tyrant ranting about unity and security from a vast video screen is played by John Hurt ("Alien"). An ambitious, deeply religious Conservative politician, he had imposed martial law in the wake of a terrorist virus attack, putting society under the thumb of fanatical Church of England bishops. (According to Google, the phrase "fanatical Church of England bishops" has never been seen before.) The government dispatched all Muslims and homosexuals to concentration camps (although the film forgets to mention how these two victimized minorities got along on the inside).

My published articles are archived at -- Steve Sailer

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