Thursday, March 12, 2009


Yesterday's double feature was Pinocchio and W. Warning: Here be spoilers :)

Both confused me, but thoroughly entertained me. Here's why:

Pinocchio - classic children's movie. But I do not think Leah will watch this movie until she's in high school. It starts with the cheesy, motivational, when you wish upon a star theme, but once Pinocchio comes alive, it's all downhill. He is kidnapped not once, but twice by bad men who want to exploit him. Then he goes to some carnival where little boys smoke cigars, play pool, and drink some concoction that turns them into donkeys? Seriously?

Once he somehow gets free of the donkey juice, he returns to Geppetto's to find him, Cleo, and Figaro gone. Where are they? Looking for their wooden boy/puppet creation? No. They are in the belly of a whale Can this kid get a break?

Anyways, somehow he makes the whale sneeze and out come Geppetto and his pets. And I think they lived happily ever after. I covered my eyes after the Monstro incident, scared of what else might curse this poor puppet... :)

So, bottom line is if I let Leah watch this movie, I must be prepared to talk about kidnapping, exploitation special talents, fox and mouse combos who walk the streets and lure you away to the circus, etc. I'm not ready for that. Good thing Leah's not here yet.

And now for W. - We all know I'm no Bush fan, so I went into this movie thinking it would make fun of his outlandish one-liners (check), outline all the things he did wrong in his life (check), and make me feel like he was just some jack-ass who lived a spoiled, privileged, care-free life and had everything handed to him on a silver platter (half a check). But I wasn't expecting the pity I felt for him, or a new feeling that we might have misunderstood what was really going on the White House between 2000 and 2004. I know, I know's just a movie. I'm not sure what feelings Oliver Stone wanted me to have, but I have a feeling i was not supposed to empathize with W by the end.

I'll explain.

His whole life he was trying to prove something and get attention from his father. Jeb was the favorite son, and W acted out to get daddy's attention. After he was done effing around and getting C averages at Yale and Harvard business school, he decided he wanted to go into politics. Instead of George HW saying "good for you, son" he told him he wasn't a politician-type. He was never supportive of W, because he was trying to promote his own political career. Once W was successful at politics (according to Texas' 19th district), he decided to run for Governor. Once again, HW wanted W to take a backseat to Jeb, who was already running for Governor of Florida. He ran anyways, and won, while Jeb lost.

Skip ahead several years and W is in the post-9/11 White House. His closest allies are Colin Powell, Condy Rice (who is portrayed as whiny and meek in the film - I don't think that's the case), Karl Rove, and of course, shot-my-friend-in-the-face Cheney. This team convinced him there were WMD's in the middle east and didn't stop until we were at war. I feel like he was their puppet, and when he was taking the fall for the lack of said WMD's, they no longer wanted to be his ally. They jumped ship and he was left to pick up the pieces.

Whether or not any of the specific conversations in the movie actually took place, the W I watched on screen for 2 hours is not a man that deserved the public lashing that he took. Real life W is different.

That's my take. Bush fan or not, I think this movie was well-made.

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