Thursday, December 15, 2005

It's just a movie for God's sake!

So today's pinhead who actually gets paid to write is James P. Pinkerton of New York's Newsday. His column begins "Is King Kong Racist?" Oh for God's sake. Is this some college course like Film and Idiotic Moral Comparisons? Is Pinkerton the wannabe professor?

Pinkerton writes, "Any movie that features white people sailing off to the Third World to capture a giant ape and carry it back to the West for exploitation is going to be seen as a metaphor for colonialism and racism. That was true for the original in 1933 and for the two remakes: the campy one in 1976, and the latest, directed by Peter Jackson. (In addition, a "Kong" wannabe, "Mighty Joe Young," has been made twice.)

Movie reviewer David Edelstein, writing in, notes the "implicit racism of 'King Kong' - the implication that Kong stands for the black man brought in chains from a dark island (full of murderous primitive pagans) and with a penchant for skinny white blondes." It's now racism to be into skinny white blondes? (Hopefully, Cranky's brunette Wife doesn't read this part.)

Comparing the new film with the original, The Washington Post's Stephen Hunter observed, "It remains a parable of exploitation, cultural self-importance, the arrogance of the West, all issues that were obvious in the original but unexamined; they remain unexamined here, if more vivid."

First of all it's a movie. Is Star Wars racist because the arch villain Darth Vader is dressed in black? Will PETA protest because Chewbacca was subservient to Han Solo? What about Frosty the Snowman? Every time he "woke up" or was "re-born" he said "Happy Birthday. Is that an allegory for Jesus Christ? Don't forget Frosty melted (died) and was re-made (arose from the dead?) If you want to find similarities you can. But King Kong racist? If anything Peter Jackson's masterpiece of entertainment proves the opposite.

Just as "Dances with Wolves" showed the Native American culture from their perspective, and in the process showing the mindless cruelty of the West, King Kong shows the immorality of exploitation, slavery and colonialism. It tells the story from the exploited/slave/colonized Kong point of view and shows the immorality of it rather than defending it.

If you look hard enough you'll find whatever you want. Yes Kong is covered in black fur and yes he is taken by ship in chains back to America for exploitation and then death. And yes he instills fear in the masses and yes he has a thing for a skinny blonde woman. But when people watch Godzilla movies I'm sure they think this is a cheesy monster movie rather than think about the whole destruction of Japan and Godzilla is the war or a nuclear weapon. It's just a movie! And if have a thing for skinny white blondes then I guess I'm a racist too. (Dear God I hope Cranky's brunette Wife isn't reading this.)

I think I am just as pinheaded as Pinkerton. Can't I get paid to write too?


Blogger Cranky's Wife said...

You may hope I didn't read it but too late....

8:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How's that baby siter working out?

8:12 AM  

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