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Chris Metcalf

specialization is for insects

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Last night I went to see Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 9/11.

Its a good thing Laura took me out for pizza & beer afterwards to cool me off.

I have serious issues with the style of Michael Moore’s “documentaries” (yes, I’ve also seen Bowling for Columbine) . For one, I don’t think they even come close to qualifying as documentaries. They’re more like two-hour long Michael Moore opinion columns.

Here’s his modus operandi:

  1. Present a few well known "facts" (many of which have not even been proven true), things that have been highlighted in the major news media for weeks or months or years
  2. Make some very tenuous connections between his "facts", using mainly rumor or conjecture
  3. Before the viewers have the chance to come to their own conclusions about what they've just seen, bombard them with hyper-emotional imagery in an attempt to make them automatically come to the same conclusions Moore has come to himself.

And that’s how he continues for the duration of the movie. Even worse, he has this coddling tone that makes it sound like he’s talking to a child. If you’re trying to make a documentary meant for self-thinking, intelligent adults, you don’t talk down to them like they were infants.

So suffice to say I didn’t buy into his ruse. The imagery he used was very powerful. He showed a lot of film that many people would feel shouldn’t be shown, including a lot of bloody pictures of civilian casualties and even the Fallujah killings of the civilian security contractors. Personally I feel that in another context they shouldn’t have been shown. But Moore’s goal was to be controversial and edgy, and he succeeded.

But that doesn’t mean I have to like it.