Thursday, July 05, 2007

Yippi Ki Yi Yay

Michael Serazio has written a review of the Die Hard movies that's a little off the mark in my opinion. Specifically he casts John McClane, Bruce Willis's alter ego in the movie, as a Neo-Conservative. Let's give credit where credit it is do - any action hero has a bit of the Neo-Conservative about him. A Neo Conservative wants to solve foreign policy problems with military force and is suspicious of and contemptuous of peaceful or negotiated resolution. If an action hero can negotiate his way out of his problems, well, let's just say that's a very different kind of movie.

That said I think he's a bit harder on McClane that is really necessary. First of all he takes a bit of a piss at McClanes blue-collar origins; positioning him as a red-state slob. Then he suggests that McClane's reaction in the first movie mirrors would be approved of by Dick Cheney. Let's remember the plot of the first movie. The building is taken over by terrorists and his wife is one of the prisoners. In response to that fictional situation, what would Serazio advocate? I mean what's the next move if we aren't going to be like John McClane/Dick Cheney? Open up a dialogue?

It only works, of course, if you see the terrorists that invaded the Nakatomi tower are the moral equivalents of, well, the nations of Iraq and now Iran. They aren't. One are a bunch of cartoon characters; villains with no hope of redemption. The other are whole nations, made of millions of innocents and admittedly problematic governments at the top.

Using this logic, any story that has villains that much be defeated by combat has Neo-con undertones.

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