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BTL Film Review: Hijacking Catastrophe

Between The Lines Film Review: Hijacking Catastrophe

Preachers Preach of Evil Fates
Even the President of the United States must sometimes have to stand naked

From John Boonstra
Film Reviewer for New Haven Advocate, Hartford Advocate, Fairfield Weekly

***** (5 Stars) Hijacking Catastrophe: 9/11, Fear & the Selling of the American Empire. Directors/screenwriters: Jeremy Earp, Sut Jhally. Narrator: Julian Bond. (Unrated)

Hijacking Catastrophe: 9/11, Fear & the Selling of the American Empire is a succinct, superb restating of a case that desperately needs to made plain to the American people who've stubbornly refused to hear anything bad about our unelected president. Jeremy Earp and Jut Suhally write and direct a chilling 64 minutes exposing the radical neoconservative geopolitical agenda and the White House's shameless use of the 9/11 attacks to foment a climate of fear, the better to implement that agenda.

Care a whit about the Bill of Rights? Perhaps you're blissfully unaware that the Administration's hastily legislated Patriot Act effectively kneecaps the Fourth and Sixth Amendments. Already appalled by the sight of Deputy Secretary of Defense and chief reactionary Paul Wolfowitz (fondly recalled from his comb-sucking moment prettying up for the camera in Fahrenheit 9/11)? You'll loathe him all the more when you hear how he authored a report stating that the shift toward a unilateral, pre-emptive Uber-America could would have to a gradual evolution in the nation's political thinking...barring, of course, a single transforming catastrophe ìalong the lines of Pearl Harbor." Exactly one year later, the planes crashed into the towers.

This a tightly-packed horrorshow which finds room to examine the economic implications of slashing taxes on the rich while lavishing billions on a war budget that shows no end in sight. Time and again, reasonable and enlightened interviewees patiently explain that the United States is not merely a military colossus; that the strength of our nation (and indeed, much of the global economy) depends on the mythic power of the almighty dollar. Yet we're already hip-deep in debt to other nations, and that's a bill that will come due, with interest. It's jarring to be reminded that the Bushies have not only drastically undermined the present-day political discourse, they've also inflicted deep wounds on America's future.

Julian Bond narrates, with informed commentary from Lt. Col. Karen Kwiatowski, Daniel Ellsberg, Noam Chomsky, Chalmers Johnson, Mark Crispin Miller, Stan Goff, Greg Speeter , Noam Chomsky and Norman Mailer, among dozens of justifiably outraged voices. Hijacking Catastrophe is the best of the recent rush of like-minded motion pictures, because it is so concise (quite unlike the aforementioned Michael Moore lightning rod) and so damned sobering. Once again, there's the frustration that I'm watching this film but I surely don't need to, It's the undecideds, wherever they may lurk, who need to be plunked in front of a movie screen or a DVD player and forced to watch. (Iëm picturing Malcolm McDowell in A Clockwork Orange here, which is probably not the way to win hearts and minds.) It's the cowed-into-submission Bush voters who fail to grasp the scope of the havoc this man and his cronies have inflicted on the nation, the world, the Constitution of these United States. But we know 99% of the viewing audience will be those already predisposed in its left-leaning direction.

My promise to you, gentle reader: this is my final political screed masquerading as a film review. (At least, that is, until the next time I feel the overwhelming urge to rant.) I feel like a man in need of a twelve-step program to swear off these enlightening yet maddening political documentaries, all released in the fervent hope of somehow unseating the lunatics who now run the asylum. The clock is ticking, and the game has gone down to the wire. See the movie, vote these war criminals out of office.


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