Seth Rogen versus Sarah Palin: Is ‘American Sniper’ pro-war or patriotic?

21 Jan 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

American Sniper used fake baby.

Fans and critics of the controversial movie – which had a budget of $60 million – have now taken to Twitter to slam its obvious use of a mechanical dummy. “I don’t get all the American Sniper love,” wrote another on Twitter. “But I do understand Bradley Cooper’s [Oscar] nom. In a scene in the film, Bradley Cooper and his onscreen wife, Sienna Miller, can be seen passing the faux baby between one another, reports The Hollywood Reporter.Whatever your political interpretation of American Sniper, it is somewhat surprising that the 84-year-old director has been labeled a warmongering propagandist whitewasher. “A Republican platform movie,” New York magazine branded it. “I haven’t seen American Sniper, but correct me if I’m wrong: An occupier mows down faceless Iraqis but the real victim is his anguished soul,” tweeted author Max Blumenthal. “The real American Sniper was a hate-filled killer.The widow of Chris Kyle, the SEAL subject of the blockbuster American Sniper, is scaling back her public appearances to promote the film following backlash.Bradley Cooper’s preparations to portray Chris Kyle in “American Sniper” began in the dining room and the weight room: To take on the role of a 230-pound Navy SEAL sniper, Cooper would have to pack on muscle — and a lot of it. “I had to get to the point where I believed I was him,” Cooper told Men’s Health. “At 185 pounds, it would’ve been a joke.

On the one hand, there are folks who wonder whether the biographical depiction of slain Navy SEAL shooter Chris Kyle is too dismissive of Iraqi humanity, too casual in its killing, and ultimately too pro-Iraq War. Eastwood, 84, and the actors try to lend the lifeless prop some hint of vitality, but it’s impossible to miss, and according to the website, the audience at a media screening laughed aloud at its obvious artificiality. The movie, starring Bradley Cooper as Kyle, Sienna Miller as his wife and directed by Clint Eastwood, has already earned $90.2million at the box office, setting a record for the highest-earning January opening. His size was such a part of who he was.” But Cooper’s work to ready himself for the role — for which he ultimately earned an Oscar nomination — wasn’t about simply adding extra lean muscle; Kyle, he said, “wasn’t ripped. Some reviewers came to these conclusions, but Oscar-winning filmmaker Michael Moore and actor/producer Seth Rogen have become the faces of this point of view, fairly or not.

The Hollywood Reporter goes on to suggest that California’s strict child labour laws may be to blame for the use of the doll, but the film’s screenwriter/executive producer Jason Hall claimed the two babies filmmakers had expected to play the role just didn’t come through. “Hate to ruin the fun but real baby #1 showed up with a fever. Did anybody ever study the history of Afghanistan, not only with the British, but the Russians?…Contrary to public opinion, I abhor violence.” When Eastwood delivered his bizarre chair-Obama speech at the 2012 Republican National Convention, he somehow got the audience to applaud his dovish criticism of the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan. “I know you were against the war in Iraq, and that’s okay,” he said to invisible chair-Obama. “But you thought the war in Afghanistan was okay.

It had the power to leave a packed Manhattan movie house silent—really, completely silent—as they stared at the closing credits and tried to absorb the meaning of what they’d seen. The film tells the story of Mr Kyle, a sniper, who was credited with saving hundreds of American lives by making 160 confirmed kills, the most in U.S. military history. But on Tuesday, following American Sniper’s record-breaking opening weekend and six Academy Award nominations, Time published the interview in its entirety.

After retiring from the military, Kyle was shot dead at a gun range in Texas in 2013 by a soldier he was trying to help who was suffering from severe PTSD. He was just a bear.” The transformation had to be completed quickly, in about three months’ time, before filming began. “It was a heavily regulated regimen,” Cooper told the Navy Times. “I had a goal of 30 pounds of muscle. We didn’t check with the Russians to see how they did there for the 10 years.” The Oscar-winning filmmaker has been described as a blend of Milton Friedman and the famously anti-war intellectual Noam Chomsky. Rogen, fresh off the international incident created by his North Korean movie “The Interview,” opined that “American Sniper” reminded him of a fake film that’s showing near the end of the Quentin Tarantino’s World War II movie “Inglourious Basterds.” That film showed a German sniper killing Allied soldiers from a clock tower.

His political image nowadays—hardly a GOP hardliner—is a remarkable shift from his position in popular culture in decades past, when you could have argued that he was a poster boy for right-wing, American toughness. “The movie’s moral position is fascist. In the movie the sniper, Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, exists for one reason: to stop or kill belligerents who are in the act of attempting to take out American soldiers. White and Wariner also co-founded the Frisco-based charity Kilroy’s Legacy, which holds events that are focused on helping veterans such as the movie showing.

But Eastwood’s anti-war streak runs deeper than just Iraq and Afghanistan. “I was a child growing up during World War II,” he told the Toronto Star. “That was supposed to be the one to end all wars. Meyer, a Marine vet who was awarded the medal for his bravery during the Battle of Ganjga in Afghanistan, said of Moore: ‘I’m sure that his grandfather who died serving this country is rolling over in his grave knowing that his grandson is using him to justify him calling U.S. service men cowards. ‘I’d be willing to bet that at some point during his grandfather’s service, he was watched over by U.S. snipers, and probably had his life saved more than once by U.S. snipers during the war.’ However, despite the film’s defenders, it appears that representatives for Mrs Kyle and the movie were somewhat squeamish about putting her in front of the press. And four years later, I was standing at the draft board being drafted during the Korean conflict, and then after that there was Vietnam, and it goes on and on forever…I just wonder…does this ever stop? I am proud of our defenders.” “Hollywood leftists: while caressing shiny plastic trophies you exchange among one another while spitting on the graves of freedom fighters who allow you to do what you do, just realize the rest of America knows you’re not fit to shine Chris Kyle’s combat boots,” the post read, in part.

And no, it doesn’t.” His non-interventionist views also bleed into his work. “Clint Eastwood makes a huge anti-war statement with [2006’s Letters from Iwo Jima],” Fox News reported. Despite this back-and-forth, there’s other evidence that a broad US audience is reacting to the movie as a work of art, seeing in it multiple messages that speak to multiple points of view. She added: ‘Because of this, any questions related to the current murder trial [involving the disturbed U.S. veteran who killed Kyle] and the Ventura trial are off the table.’ The email referred to the defamation lawsuit brought last year by former Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura against Kyle’s autobiography.

He trained like a strength athlete in the morning, then he came in again in the afternoon and trained to build muscle.” According to T-Nation, Cooper gained 39 pounds and maintained “roughly the same percent body fat. It took in $105 million over the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend, putting it on track for the biggest January opening ever, the Monitor’s Dan Wood reports. Taya Kyle has thanked movie-goers for ‘being willing to watch the hard stuff’ in the war drama and says she often cries thinking about the support she has received.

So he took to it pretty quickly.” Getting Kyle’s Texas accent just right also required four hours a day of dialect work. “I had so much access to Chris, based on interviews he’d done and video. The movie may have benefited from good timing, in the sense that the US appears ready for a movie that grapples seriously with the after effects of the Iraq War on the US military, and in general on the corrosive effects of combat service on the ability of soldiers to reintegrate into normal life.

I had earbuds on that whole time, just listening to his voice, repeating what he would say.” Walsh told T-Nation that Chris Kyle’s picture often graced the gym’s wall during workouts to the Navy SEAL’s own playlist, which included Metallica and Toby Keith. In some senses the movie is all things to all people, in an ideological sense: “both a devastating war movie and a devastating antiwar movie,” in the words of the New Yorker critic David Denby. I’m willing to meet my Creator and answer for every shot that I took.” He adds, “The thing that . . . haunts me are all the guys that I couldn’t save.” That is both the story he told himself and the story he thinks is true. The film, which is based on Mr Kyle’s autobiography of the same name reveals not only how he became so successful, but also how the trauma of fighting in Iraq never left him. ‘You are the man who I couldn’t have even dreamt of because you were/are better than I could have dreamed, the love of my life, my friend, partner and the man who laughed with me through the pain and found joy in the smallest and best parts of life.

Cooper played with her children in the backyard and rolled on the ground with her dogs. “It felt like I had a couple of friends over,” she said. “They were very respectful, kind and warm.” Taya recalled watching the film for the first time: “Initially I was so focused on Chris and making sure that it honored him, but I just lost myself,” she told the Military Times. “It was so Chris. The movie seems to have pinged off something in the American psyche, with its huge box-office opening. (All hail Clint Eastwood, running the tables at age 84.) Some of the reasons would be obvious. Spotting his obvious talent, the military sent him to SEAL sniper school, where he was taught how to perform warfare’s loneliest and most controversial job. I did not want to say, ‘oh that is a good movie.’ The only thing that I could come up with was, that the movie was impactful and that I am so sorry. While the film glorifies war—all battlefield heroics, by being admirable, glorify war—there is a persistent antiwar presence, and not only because depicting the damage and dislocation done to those visited by war is an antiwar statement.

It is being compared, favorably, to 2008’s “The Hurt Locker,” but that movie was a higher form of art, full of surprise and edgier, more confounding. It’s one thing to show Bradley Cooper clenching his jaw at a child’s backyard birthday party, but it was more powerful when Jeremy Renner mindlessly pushes a huge shopping cart through a huge food store with a thousand breakfast cereals and that’s his job now, two days out of Iraq, to choose the right cereal.

The modern, relatively short tour punctuated by home leave is meant to be compassionate and is wholly understandable as policy: Soldiers have families, including children who desperately need them. She is a pretty young woman who means nothing, who is neither impressive as a character nor poignant nor wholly fleshed out, and every time you see her she is whining at her husband and crying because he is here but not here, he is damaged, he’s got to get with it and be a better father. It doesn’t seem to occur to the filmmakers that while the Chris Kyle character does not understand how spooked and detached from family life he has become, she never understands he’s been living inside a violent video game for nine months, only it wasn’t a game, and the things he saw would have changed him, changed anyone, forever.

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