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Forgive me

I rented Mel Gibson’s Apocalypto on DVD this weekend and fairly enjoyed it. I know it was wrong of me to put more money into that creep’s coffers. Mr. Gibson’s antisemitism is beneath contempt and I (of all people) should have cut off my hand before I used it to pick up the remote and power on the DVD player.

That being said, I can only recommend about 10 minutes of the entire movie to my readers. Go ahead and rent it, if you’re feeling rich, and jump to the scene when they take the prisoners into the big city and up to the Temple of the Sun. It’s extremely sensationalist and decadent. Middle class Mayan housewives look momentarily with pity upon the newly captured prisoners, then return to their chores. The upper-caste Mayan women sport the most Baroque hairstyles imaginable as they snake their way through dense crowds borne by slaves on liters. While most of the daily life and ritual of the Mayans, as it was portrayed by Mr. Gibson, probably had no more basis in reality than Shrek 3, it was a fun, gory romp with a cast of thousands that brought to mind my old friend Cecil B. DeMille.

Nothing sums up the contradictions of our society so well as the scene with the panther. Because these noble creatures have been hunted and abused to the point of extinction, the scene when the warriors killed a panther was so obviously fake- a classic piece of cinematic camp. Clearly Mr. Gibson didn’t want to offend the sensibilities of cat lovers. I applaud his sensitivity. Despite our best efforts, humans are not on any endangered species lists. Scenes depicting human torture and murder are free to be portrayed as far as the limits technology will allow.


About Russell Smith

I was born at the American Hospital in Neuilly-sur-Seine, France. I find inspiration in the lives of so many people from Joan of Arc to Oscar Wilde. While my primary avocation is photography, I also enjoy philosophy, theology and most of all, history. My beloved wife, Robin Anne Smith, who passed away in 2013 is also an inspiration to me. My beloved partner, Dana is also a great support and inspiration to me. I'd be remiss if I did not mention my cats: Natasha, Maxwell, Tigger and Nigel.

2 responses »

  1. Maybe Maxwell will force your boss into crumpling up his graduate degrees and using them for tiny soccer balls! Hang in there Julie! Help is at paw, I mean, at hand!

  2. Have you seen Idiocracy? It’s one of my recent faves, and the beginning montage shows how the lowly masses have the time and disinhibition to multiply like weeds, whereas anxiety-prone and upwardly mobile folk like yours truly somehow never manage to seed the earth. Anyhow, I concur with you that it is truly a pity how humans are really in no danger of extinction. And what’s worse, the most offensive violators have procured themselves permanent places in the present and the future. Case in point: my eeevil boss has two children before the age of 35. He endangers OUR human species by persisting.


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