Tags: Anti-War | Films

Why Hollywood's Anti-War Films Are Bombing

Tuesday, 30 Oct 2007 11:55 AM

By James Hirsen

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Headlines (Scroll down for complete stories):
1. Britney Spears and Lindsay Lohan’s Starry-eyed Moms
2. U2, Not Me
3. Why Hollywood’s Anti-War Films Are Bombing
4. Halloween Brings More Torture Flicks
5. '24' Takes on Critics

 

1. Britney Spears and Lindsay Lohan’s Starry-eyed Moms

As Britney Spears and Lindsay Lohan go in and out of rehab, courthouses and nightspots, people have wondered where their moms are.

Britney’s mom Lynne has been busy writing a book. Her tell-all, “Pop Culture Mom: A Real Story of Fame and Family in a Tabloid World,” is set to be released on Mother's Day next year.

Lindsay’s mom Dina has a new reality show in production for the E! channel. The show will film the New York City adventures of Dina and Lindsay’s younger sister Ali.

Dina is using her famous daughter to draw viewers, hinting that Lindsay may appear on the program.

“Lindsay is a family member and will lend a helping hand if Ali asks her,” Dina told People magazine.

Dina also tried to justify her personal star search.

“There are so many misconceptions about me and my family,” she said. “I’m setting the record straight.”


2. U2, Not Me

A company called U2 Ltd. earned more than $30 million last year, with $25.8 million of the money being paid out to five “employees.”

“Employees” are most likely members of U2 along with the band’s manager Paul McGuinness.

While Bono has been trying to convince politicians to use tax dollars to forgive the debts of the Third World, he apparently works hard to minimize his own tax bills.

In 2006, because of public disapproval of the tax-free status granted to artists, which benefited rich rock stars like U2, the Irish government capped the tax-free benefit at $360,000 annually.

Within months of the Irish government’s decision, U2 relocated its corporate base to Amsterdam.

Who knew that even rock stars will change their tunes to avoid the Tax Man?


3. Why Hollywood’s Anti-War Films Are Bombing

Despite big name casts, two films from Hollywood’s current crop of anti-war flicks are box-office flops.

“In the Valley of Elah” has three Oscar winners in its cast line-up, Charlize Theron, Susan Sarandon and Tommy Lee Jones. Additionally, the movie is directed by Paul Haggis, who also has a gold statue to his credit for the film “Crash.”

Even with all the star power “Elah” opened its first weekend with a paltry $1.5 mill.

Another anti-war film, “Rendition,” which features three more Academy Award winners, Reese Witherspoon, Meryl Streep and Alan Arkin, took in an embarrassing $4.1 million in its opening weekend.

Hollywood decision makers have been deriving comfort from opinion polls, which show a majority of the public no longer supports the war in Iraq. But once again Hollywood is showing that it is out of touch.

Left leaners in Hollywood have a visceral hatred for the Bush administration and enormous hostility toward the war.

However, for the public, the underlying feelings are more those of war weariness, and there is little appetite for activism or anti-war related cinematic fare.

After being barraged with negative imagery on the news each day and inundated with discussions regarding the war from presidential candidates, political pundits and the like, the public is just not in the mood to seek out movies with such themes.

Next to bomb will likely be Brian De Palma’s “Redacted” and Robert Redford and Tom Cruise’s “Lions for Lambs.”

But also likely to happen in the near future, despite poor box-office performances, is a bunch of slaps on the back to each other in the form of Oscar nominations.


4. Halloween Brings More Torture Flicks

Torture flick “Saw IV” was not screened for critics, probably because of its incredibly sick content.

The abhorrent movie from Lionsgate brought in $32.1 million last weekend, the second highest opening of the “Saw” films, which have been released every Halloween weekend since 2004.

Hollywood will no doubt continue to churn out more of the big-screen garbage. “Saw” (2004) opened with $18.2 million, “Saw II” (2005) $31.7 million and “Saw III” (2006) $33.6 million.

In stark contrast, “Bella,” a life affirming movie from Roadside Attractions, opened with the second highest per screen take, with more than $8,000 per theater.

“Bella” was only on 165 screens.

That number should swiftly expand if Hollywood execs are paying attention.


5. '24' Takes on Critics

The Fox hit “24” has alarmed critics on the Left with its counterterrorist characters and their willingness to use extreme measures when dealing with terrorists in trying to save countless lives.

The show appears to be taking its critics head-on.

In scenes from a trailer promoting the show’s seventh season, Kiefer Sutherland’s character, agent Jack Bauer, appears in front of a governmental panel that is investigating his past actions, including harsh treatment of terrorism suspects.

“Don’t expect me to regret the decisions that I have made, because sir, the truth is, I don’t,” Bauer says in the scene.

In another segment, Bauer is preparing to interrogate a suspect when a female official gives him free rein.

“Do whatever it takes. Torture him if you have to,” the woman says.

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