In anyone else's hands, this could be so terrible. But I totally trust Peter Jackson to get it right. I thought I had read the book but in retrospect, I don't think I have. I have to go read it now so I still have a little time between the two and I don't judge too harshly. Here's hoping it's awesome.
(And of course, living in Boston now means rooting for hometown actor Mark Walhberg, which I pretty much did anyway. And of course, I choose not to extend this rule to Ben Affleck. So there.)
Speaking of socialism, though, last night I saw Capitalism: A Love Story. I'd heard it was one of Moore's weaker efforts, but I didn't think so at all. It's not as openly controversial as some of his past works, and yet "socialism" is such a hot button issues these days. For some reason I always remember this library in North Carolina where Veloute and Douglas used to live. Someone had scrawled "Socialism here!" in terrified chicken-scratch on the book drop door. I remember being a little confused, like, "Yeah...and?"
Anyway, the movie has all the Moore staples you've come to expect, starting with a handful of somewhat in-depth true stories from people whose homes are being foreclosed and people who have lost spouses and come to find out these companies for whom their spouses worked take out life insurance on their employees, collecting big time when they die (meaning of course, that the employee is usually worth more to them dead than alive). I really didn't know much about the latter, and it was really appalling.
Moore also does his in-your-face schtick, which I've never been too fond of, though I can certainly appreciate the need for it, I suppose. It's always humorous to see numerous security people walking out of whatever corporate headquarters Moore's approaching before he's even at the door (shit, at GM he wasn't even on the stairs before they came out). And not surprisingly, all the Congress representatives who speak with him are Democrats. Shocker.
But it was enjoyable, and I hope a lot of people see it (particularly those who don't already agree with the views, but the odds of that are always slim). But who knows...when I left the theater, I heard someone ask, "Did you just come from the new Michael Moore movie?" (I was rocking the peasant look, apparently.) Especially since it was opening weekend, I thought maybe someone was looking for an argument, but I turned around anyway.
"Yes," I say.
"Did you like it?"
(Mild apprehension.) "Yes."
"Oh, well, here, you might like to read this, then..." and I was handed materials for meetings discussing the film, marches in Quincy and some other panel discussions on--gasp!--socialism! Holy shit, I'm not in Texas anymore.