Tag: Hollywood

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I recently saw the trailer for “12 Strong” about the Special Forces team deployed to Afghanistan after 9/11. They fought on horseback and the realistic scenes where horses were shown flying through the air in the midst of explosions prompted an on screen disclaimer that ” No animals were harmed in the making of this […]

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Will Steven Spielberg’s new novel-based movie Ready Player One push the gaming concept of an “easter egg” into mainstream culture? Like the American tradition of egg hunts on Easter morning, a virtual easter egg is an allusion to something external hidden with a game world. For example, one game might subtly reference another in admiration by […]

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Antonio Sabato, Jr.: The Sanctuary State and Being Blacklisted by Hollywood


Being blacklisted for openly supporting Trump isn’t easy in Hollywood, so what do you do when the doors are closed in your face? Work to change the system. Actor, Director, and Producer Antonio Sabato Jr. is now a candidate for Congress in the once formerly red district, CA-26 (Ventura County).

Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America welcome the news that another major figure in the Benghazi terrorist attack is now in U.S. custody – only hundreds more to go.  They also shudder as the accusations of  actor Kevin Spacey allegedly preying upon a 14-year-old boy years ago elicits another round of “everybody knew” in Hollywood.  And they discuss the odd transformation of Megyn Kelly, from presidential debate moderator and hard-hitting interviewer to lighthearted morning host discussing Halloween decorations and dance moves.

“I’m with Her,” One Year Later

With the recent news about rampant sexual abuse in Hollywood, I was reminded of my unposted article on Hillary’s ironic campaign slogan. One year later, this piece is now more pertinent than ever.

After a viral video showed looped footage of potential POTUS and Bosnian sniper dodger Hillary Clinton collapsing at the 9/11 Memorial in New York, her campaign proved her unequivocal ability to lead the free world by demonstrating she can open an unsealed jar of kosher dills on Jimmy Kimmel’s late-night enablerthon. Take that, conservatives and sexists! Hillary is woman, hear her Vlasic crunch!

Between ubiquitous Subaru and Pious Prius bumper stickers along with her sycophants screaming at those not as tolerant as them, we cannot escape three little words that The House of Sad came up with to grab her gender-centric voting block — “I’m With Her.” Congratulations Chappaqua, this may be the most accurate combination of nine letters ever to describe today’s Left.


Where Are the Fathers of Sexual Harassment Victims?


Over and over again for the past few weeks we’ve read stories of young women who were assaulted by Harvey Weinstein and other men in power in Hollywood. The most recent is a decades-old incident involving Reese Witherspoon, who claims sexual assault in a hotel room at the age of 16 by an unnamed director. Let’s not gloss over the fact that a 16-year-old had absolutely no business going to a man’s hotel room by herself, whether it involved a job in Hollywood or not.

So far, the only man we’ve heard of defending his lady at the time of an incident is Brad Pitt. Good for him, but it makes me wonder where are the fathers, boyfriends, or husbands of these other women?

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I am tired of all the sanctimonious agreement around here. So here is my defense of the King of Hollywood. 1: Water flows downhill.  Every time. In any system where there are powerful men and supplicative women, water will flow downhill. No amount of moralizing or preaching changes that one whit.  Preview Open

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It’s All Unraveling (And Why That’s a Good Thing)


Michael RamirezAmerica, tired of being lied to by its coastal betters, chose a President to tear it all down to the studs, from where a more hopeful and stronger country could rise again. Much of the anger that brought Donald Trump into office was certainly directed toward Washington DC’s elites, but also our cultural pillars. With a $20 trillion national debt, politicians had been Weinsteining their constituents for decades and people of both parties have had enough of the D.C./entertainment/sports/media complex.

The only results from the Progressives’ identity politics prescribed by Leftist septuagenarians was to balkanize a once civil union. Meanwhile, the overpaid, yet feckless consultant class on the right finagles their benefactor’s largesse but yield few results. Jabba the Hutt politicians along with their K-Street enablers tied the American voter to his chain, while they focused on reelection. It’s only about their power. From their mahogany walled watering holes in DC, they laugh at us idealistic rubes while ensuring their marble streets remain shiny in National Harbor. Americans weren’t just voting against DC. They were voting against the cultural rot that started decades ago.

Meanwhile, Hollywood, known for facades phonier than Obama’s Greek columns, somewhere along the way went from dream factory with a few crazies, to become the worst stereotype conservatives always believed it was. Its incestual, intellectually shallow, immature, and chronically insecure inhabitants know only two modes: reading someone else’s words for a living or regurgitating Bill Maher’s. These people have spent so much energy on dividing the country into a caste system, they hadn’t realized their product has suffered, relegating themselves to brain-numbing CGI superhero remakes and Oscar-bait no one will ever see, but … another award show to congratulate each other on our brilliance! Movie audiences are responding with their wallets as year-over-year box office receipts have plummeted.

ACF #13 Political Conflict in Marvel and DC


I’m back with the second part of my long conversation with my friend Pete Spiliakos. We talked about girls becoming women in despite of society in ’80s movies last time. In the most surprising way, Pete picked horror movies to show social and psychological realism. Well, he hit it out of the park there, but then our conversation veered to the aesthetic, dramatic art and the political implications of the new business model of sequels and franchises. Like it or not, in an age of sequels and franchises, it’s no longer feasible to ignore the problem of sucky sequels.

Nick Searcy on Hollywood, Racism, DACA, and Twitter Trolls


Nick SearcyNick Searcy has been seen in American film and television for almost 20 years, but working in Hollywood as an outspoken Conservative isn’t easy. In this episode of Whiskey Politics, Nick joins us to discuss how the Left has become the racist party of “a different form.” Nick also discusses how to engage liberal trolls online, the impact Andrew Breitbart’s death had on him, DACA, liberal Republicans being primaried in 2018, their Obamacare repeal promises, how the Left may be surprised in 2018 and 2020, and how to get your car keyed in tolerant Los Angeles.

Women of a Certain Age in America


Time was when women of a certain age had to rely on Mrs. Nancy Meyers and the late Nora Ephron for vaguely risque romantic stories. Well, there’s a new generation of Meyers for a new generation of women. And, boy, is newness needed! We are longer lived, especially the women, but afraid of getting older earlier. Women on the wrong side of 20 seldom are without the fear of getting on the wrong side of 30. In an America where marriage comes later and later and with less and less hope of it lasting a lifetime, romantic comedy is fast turning into a politically revolutionary act. Movies about daring at that certain age therefore could bring together women in facing the problem.

Behold Home Again, the product of a newer, younger Meyers, a story the silliness of which I will let you glean from the trailer. And what a story! It seems to teach women that 40-year-old mother-of-three Reese Witherspoon is worth making a movie about only if, abandoned, she then abandons herself to the romantic ideas of a boy who gets carded when he asks for a drink. Isn’t that dreadfully bittersweet, and something of an embarrassment? How did we end up here? What can we learn from the poetess of Boomer rebellion?

The Projectionist’s Booth


The desire for everlasting fame in the shape of a star embedded in concrete is what keeps people coming to Hollywood to become a star and be “somebody,” and the engine of the American entertainment runs on narcissism. We elevate our movie stars so high above the rest of us, it gets to the point where some of us believe their political opinions should be taken seriously, just because they’re really good at smiling and memorizing lines to be read later.

Narcissism is not without it’s drawbacks: If you’re being told you’re the center of the universe, you tend to believe that you’re an expert on everything the universe contains, such as climatology, vaccinology, and geology, as if playing a scientist on the silver screen suddenly made you a scientist, or something.

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Taliesin Nexus’ flagship program, the Liberty Lab for Film is again accepting applications for next season’s program. Past participants and their films have screened at film festivals all over the country, picking up awards along the way. Don’t miss out on this one of a kind opportunity.  http://www.facebook.com/TaliesinNexus/videos/1070727389631981/ Preview Open

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Feminism Didn’t Arrive at the Oscars


I’ve been doing more than a little thinking about Oscar movies this year. It turns out I’ve seen quite a number of them and had something to say. Well, today the thing I want to talk about is Arrival, both shockingly and remarkably a feminist movie. It made nearly $100 million in America, so it’s made a splash, and then it was nominated in eight categories, only to leave with one measly technical award. Maybe it’s a complete bust and will soon be forgotten as most things are. I’m told it lacked the deep concern with human individuality of the big winners. But there is something to respect in its feminist outlook and so I’ll talk to you about that if you have the time.

These days, it seems like women are protagonists in science fiction stories. That’s a sign of the future, at least in the sense that men have been the protagonists up to now and there has to be some change for there to be a future. Arrival is the rare science-fiction story in which the woman protagonist is actually important because she is a woman. There are both obvious and subtle effects of this new-found womanhood: in the story on which the movie is based, the protagonist is male. Movies may be more progressive than books, I suppose.

The story is this: one day, aliens arrive unannounced in weird-looking ships suspended over various parts of the world, twelve in number, like the Apostles of Christ or the months of the year, depending on how you think about it. They are incommunicado. Men must make the effort to overcome their shock and reach out of their silent awareness that they are not, after all, alone. That’s what really scares us, I suppose, loneliness. The two protagonists are both quite lonely and, being man and woman, eventually learn to put two together. Don’t credit the aliens with teaching people how to make children too soon, however, because this story has a twist.

Hit Thriller Get Out Makes Social Commentary Fun


A young black man walks through a still, upper-middle class suburban neighborhood at night. Hopelessly lost in the sameness of the streets, he mutters about the lousy directions he was given. Noticing a car following him, he keeps his head down and keeps moving. The car pulls over ahead of him; he turns the other way, not wanting any conflict. Without warning, he’s hit from behind, tossed into the trunk, and the car speeds off.

The opening scene demonstrates that Get Out is a thriller, not the comedy that writer and first-time director Jordan Peele is most known for. He’s half of the hilarious sketch duo Key & Peele, but has a lifetime obsession with the horror genre. This isn’t the gorefest of Evil Dead or Saw; think more Stepford Wives or Invasion of the Body Snatchers.

The movie cuts to an interracial couple relaxing in their Brooklyn loft. Photographer Chris (Daniel Kaluuya) is about to meet the parents of his girlfriend Rose (Allison Williams) at their secluded estate. “Do they know I’m black?” he asks. She tells him not to worry. Her dad “would have voted for Obama for a third term if he could.” Her folks aren’t those kind of white people; they’re down with the struggle.

Oscar Reflections


Miss me, Ricochet? I’ve been busy trying to place my reflections on American-prestige-at-the-movies in various venues, trying to tell conservative America: Pay attention, at least a little attention, at least during awards season! The ugly truth is, it’s really hard to get people to care, but very easy to get them angry and contemptuous at Hollywood out-of-touch-elitism, so I’m busy trying to avoid all the dark passions. But while people still make lovely movies worth the praise, I will try to show you what they’re about and how to navigate through the sophisticated concerns that give poetry its great dignity.

So here’s my list of Awards movies conservatives should support, nay cherish. They’re all but one featured at the Oscars. I picked three all-American stories, two of which are true stories such that the movies actually understate the miracles they depict. They’ve all been remarkably successful at European art-movie festivals, even at the highest level. They’ve not been too successful in America, but they’re doing ok mostly, and getting another chance at prestige in awards season. This is the sort of stuff conservatives should support, both because it is poetry worth supporting and because it supports the conservative case for American goodness and greatness.

  1. Hacksaw Ridge. The best show of Christian America at war I can think of — so naturally, the conservative press ignores it altogether. A war picture, a remarkable technical achievement, independently financed and produced with great savvy — and then it gets lots of Oscar nominations, including the first for Mr. Mel Gibson in perhaps 20 years. Shock after shock. I think we should be bipartisan about this and do at least as much as Hollywood liberals have done, so I’m doing my part!
  2. Kubo and the Two Strings. This is the most beautiful surprise of 2016. A film almost entirely free of the sordid, which tells a broken-family story Americans should love, while at the same time doing the sophisticate poetic work of analyzing grief in terms of the grief song, threnody, and trying to show where poetry stands in-between the city and the moon.
  3. Hell or High Water. This was the anguished manliness movie of the year. I’ve written about it at length on my website, but those are notes for a very limited audience. I’ve also produced a popular essay, but I’ve not found someone willing to publish it yet…
  4. Loving. This is the most surprising sort of civil rights picture you’re going to see. It’s a respectful and very American portrayal of the moral virtues that make private life a joy, a shelter, and a benefit to the country as a whole at the same time. It’s one those true stories that makes so many of us wonder at the ways in which Americans are blessed and innocent.

Then there are movies really worth the attention of conservatives who care about the culture, but they are not really lovable and I cannot recommend them. I suppose I don’t need to, either, as they’ve been plenty successful:

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The Great Man has appeared twice in these pages the last couple days: Earlier in @clauvius’s great whiskey post and earlier still by yours truly in the Ricochet Film Society. (Not a member of the Ricochet Film Society? Joining is easy!)  Anyway, I had posted in “The Society” about W.C. Fields being offered the part of […]

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