Sunday, December 4, 2011
The Illusion Of Agenda
This post is in response to an article posted on Raw Story regarding Fox's Eric Bolling & Conservative Research Center member, Dan Gainor and their perception of a leftist political bias in the recent Muppets film: Again, boiling it down to the most shallow & remote from reality explanation imaginable.
In fact, many of recent film's more "Left", or even borderline anarchistic expressions are indicative of the triumph of the creators over the money-centric studios they work for. Like any collaborative art, it's not an agenda, but rather a reflection. Not to mention, that a lot of what Henson and company stood for in the early days is consistent with what was displayed in the new film. Again, while many major films, particularly in the last several years share some hard-left sentiments, it is done with the core writers and directors, who are taking into account current attitudes and feelings. Zeigeist plays a major part in the tone of especially mainstream film. They wouldn't be this way if the largest demographic wasn't feeling this way. After all, this is also business we're speaking of.
For best recent evidence of this: Major films of 2008-mid 2009. No Country For Old Men, Cloverfield, The Dark Knight, Wall-E, Watchmen, and District 9 all implement notions that western civilization has come to a moral crossroads, and is in deep need for some soul searching. While to the fearful, this may come off as some kind of political plot, in a volatile media climate such as now, would risking alienating the masses by pouring in millions of dollars to infiltrate the minds of the all seem like a fiscally viable model to anyone? If anything, the reason why these films were so successful, is because the public is actually resonating positively with these feelings.The studios took a risk, and it paid off. The last time we were here was perhaps in the early 1970s, and we all know what was going on then.
I can also tell you the last time the needle was in completely opposite direction: the 1980s. The ideology behind many of that decade's largest films carried with them a tone that could shock many upon closer examination. About the only massive genre stealth attack I can think of was RoboCop, and again, the public resonated with what seemed to be a prophetic & satirical look at where corporatization was leading the country. It was a ballsy shot in the dark, especially in wake of the RAMBO sequels which reduced the developing world into a charred playground, where the US won the Vietnam conflict as well as Afghanistan. It would have been impossible to have produced films like 2008's during the Reagan era. Noone would have gone. Studios need to go where the audience is...Simple.
So in short, the notions wouldn't be as present, if the feeling wasn't so prevalent in the public. So the argument presented in the story is missing a crucial point to how the business of culture works, particularly when it has become harder than ever to get seats filled in theatres.