Things at the office have been occupying my mind of late, in an unhealthy way. Let's just say that I look for opportunities to take mental vacations of sorts, and this weekend, Mrs. Brutally Honest and I set out to see Pixar's latest creation, The Incredibles, with that purpose in mind.
The flick was entertaining, and I did manage to stay distracted from the latest set of office travails for most of the movie.
Time and again during the show, I couldn't help but wonder how the left might react to this or that scene, each of them seeming to highlight more traditional memes.
I didn't have to wait long.
Terry Mattingly at GetReligion.Org links to this New York Observer review titled, incredibly, It's Super Bush! where the reviewers opine that the movie is a recruitment vehicle that will be used to pad the Red state advantage over those feeling the Blues:
And even as James Carville threw in the white towel in The New York Times on Nov. 9, admitting that he’d finally got the message that the Democrats were nothing but an opposition party, the conservatives were raking in millions of potential philosophical converts at the movies, the way the liberals used to during the Easy Rider–Graduate days of the 1960’s, when the right wing couldn’t catch a break in the culture. The message of The Incredibles—reported everywhere!—was that the chosen few should have the right to exercise their powers over a wide, bland majority of fans and mediocrity-worshippers, and save the world from a bitter, deadly evil.
It’s very much in the eye of the beholder, but at the moment, to the butt-kicked, discouraged liberal team, the Pixar-built shiny, muscle-bound cartoon characters seem to come very much from the other team.
"And what is The Incredibles?" said Richard Goldstein, author of The Attack Queers: Liberal Society and the Gay Right. "It’s really a movie about people sort of bursting out of this model of decency and concern for others, and all of those values that now get labeled politically correct, and bursting forth with their true strength and power, like an animated Hobbes. I guess the bet is that the rest of the world, looking at this spectacle, will actually just say, ‘Holy cow—we’d better do what they say!’ And this Hobbesian idea will be proven correct."
"It’s kind of ironic that superheroes now have these fascist, right-wing connotations," said Ted Rall, the editorial cartoonist for United Press Syndicate and author of Wake Up, You’re Liberal! How We Can Take America Back From the Right. "The right has stolen the flag and our superheroes, too."
Is it simply that, after four years of being beaten up with good-versus-evil rhetoric and post-9/11 fear, somehow all superheroes seem vaguely Republican to us? It’s back to Nietzsche for one more shot.
The wife and I left the movie thinking it was ok... decent in that it fulfilled the purpose for going, a vehicle used to mentally escape, if for but a couple of hours, the workaday doldrums.
Now I'm thinking it's a great movie. Anything that enrages Ted Rall is to me... well... incredible.