World Trade Center
When Oliver Stone is scared to be Oliver Stone, then it's too early for him to examine any kind of cultural event.
Look, somebody has to say it: Nobody wants to sit through a film about two guys lying underneath tons of rubble. Furthermore, nobody wants to sit through a film about 9/11 or any particular aspect of 9/11. It's too early. It's not cathartic. It's not entertaining. And how do we know it's too early? Because Oliver Stone has actually made a film that doesn't involve some kind of conspiracy or political statement. That's because if Stone tried to do something outlandish or make political hay out of the tragedy, he'd be hunted down like a dog. Simply put, when Oliver Stone is scared to be Oliver Stone, then it's too early for him to examine any kind of cultural event.
And let's face another fact: this film's subject makes it hard for Mr. Cranky to be Mr. Cranky. If "World Trade Center" is about, as many critics are saying, what makes America great, then to hate this film is to hate America. So, let me say, if that's the conclusion you draw, then you're an idiot and not worthy of your citizenship.
What I want to see is Americans kicking some terrorist ass. Oliver Stone made "Natural Born Killers" didn't he? What's the problem? What I don't think anyone wants to see, though they're loath to admit so, is watching guys chat while buried in building rubble.
I'm very pleased that John McLoughlin (Nicolas Cage) and Will Jimeno (Michael Pena), both Port Authority cops who went into the buildings to begin a rescue, survived that day. Unfortunately, I don't really see how their experience is any different or dramatic than the experience of, say, any of the miners who've been buried in the various mine disasters that have taken place over the last several years. Heroism is often forced on people, and while that doesn't make it any less heroic, survival is the nature of man. If we can, we don't usually give up and die. Neither McLoughlin or Jimeno gave up. Good for them.
The fact that they were even found was nothing short of a miracle -- if you look at it from their point-of-view. However, if you look at it from the macro point-of-view, somebody was going to be found and then somebody was going to make a movie about those somebodies being found. This is the movie that got made.
Making a predictable film about an extraordinary event doesn't make the film extraordinary. Ultimately, what's most amazing about the film is that Oliver Stone made it and isn't being vilified as a left-wing wacko and that is absolutely the truest thing anyone can say about "World Trade Center."
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