Thursday, February 12, 2015

Clint Eastwood on AMERICAN SNIPER Critics: "They're Right"

I have watched AMERICAN SNIPER and felt personally that it was borderline-monographic.  The film features scenes of absolute depravity.  The most onerous scene of Orientalist violence features a man using a hand drill to castrate a young boy who's father has given aid to the American forces.
Now we see Eastwood, who previously has stated about the film "the biggest antiwar statement any film” can make is to show “the fact of what [war] does to the family and the people who have to go back into civilian life like Chris Kyle did", now saying as he exited a restaurant last night that his notable critics, Bill Maher and Michael Moore, are correct.
Say what?
I am left torn by this statement.  On the one hand, it now makes sense why Eastwood selectively edited Kyle's biography, removing his more problematic character traits while leaving in his postwar Islamophobia.  On the other hand, he still made a film featuring a Muslim castrating a small boy with a power drill.  There are some things that remain problematic regardless of whether Eastwood says Chris Kyle was Satan incarnate.  The character comes out as more nuanced and ultimately now a victim of war, as opposed to a violent bigot, but the portrayals of Muslim violence remains problematic.  The film has very few Muslims willing to collaborate with the US Army, and the ones who attack the soldiers still come out out of the darkness like the barbarous hordes of faceless monsters.

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