Cinema and Political Fancy
Right from the dawn of cinema it has been customized as a powerful tool for propagandizing the opinions of a country or an ideology. With art as a safe disguise it also unveiled its hatred on political enemies. Hollywood has always been well known as the mouth piece of US government and plenty of examples could be citied. Joseph Goebbels, the minister of propaganda of the Third Reich, and one of Hitler’s favourites, was the sole controller of the German film industry during the 1930s. He made a number of pro-Nazi films during his service. This is still cited as the era of propaganda films. But in actuality it is Hollywood that was and is making propaganda films than any other film industry.
It is quite usual for the film makers of any language to tap the attention of the audience, by intentionally choosing sensitive materials as their plots. This when creates controversy becomes a free-of-cost publicity for the movie, while is still in the making. Unlike any other film industry in the world Hollywood enjoys a world wide scope. Hence the sensitivity of the controversy should be of international standards.
Every year in Hollywood at least a dozen war films release, which tell the heroic tales of American role in the World wars. These films which though viewed as an action adventure by a normal viewer, also plays its cards to its best to imprint the ideology that fighting war is heroic in his psyche.
Post 9/11 the urge of ‘War on Terror’ captured the attention of every American citizen. US citizens were convinced that the war against terrorism is inevitable. This idea was reiterated through media and cinema became the fancier tool of all. In the name of fighting the war on terrorism, what had happened in reality was nothing but invasion. Films were made with plots showing the acts of terrorism in details so as to terrorize a viewer and to provide a justification for the military actions taken by the US army with the cost bore by the tax money paid by Americans.
Back in 2012, Larry Charles’ ‘The Dictator’ was released in the name of the comedy, centered on the self-styled dictator Aladeen, whose character sketch had all the traits of the leaders of the Middle East countries invaded by the US in the recent past. In particular the character bore heavy similarities with real life personalities like Saddam Hussein and Muammar Gaddafi, whom the US wiped off from history. Also there is a brief reference of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, former president of Iran and the controversial Tehran nuclear issue just dramatized as the comic encounters of the supreme leader with his chief rocket scientist.
The latest entrant in this line is ‘The Interview’ by Seth Rogen starring James Franco. It again comes under the comedy genre which reportedly tells the story of a TV journalist and his producer recruited by the CIA to attempt an assassination on the leader of North Korea, Kim Jong-un. The film slated for release in October has sparked a row of controversy from the North Korean side calling the film as an ‘act of war’. Nonetheless the humorous tweet of Rogen over the controversy will only fuel up the unrest. The North Korean side reportedly views this film as the ‘desperation of the US government and American Society’. Comedy seems nothing more than an excuse to inject the hatred over the leaders whomsoever of nations that oppose the US supremacy and deny bowing down.