Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Native Land

Speaking of leftist patriots, do you want to watch a B&W WPA movie about America made by unapologetic reds like Paul Robeson?* A movie that, like Linus in A Charlie Brown Christmas, breaks it all down and explains what America is truly all about?

Of course you do! Because it kicks the living shit out of the phony patriotism of unhinged charlatans like Glenn Beck. (Although I would not put it past Beck to try to co-opt this along with all the other New Deal iconography he has shamelessly strip-mined.) It was filmed in 1942 and titled Native Land

Parts of the narrative are politically problematic. Native Americans would have a valid critique, which makes the tile a little ironic. And it is admittedly pretty preachy. But on the whole it nails it. 

It boasts brilliant cinematography by the legendary photographer Paul Strand and an orchestral score by composer Marc Blitzstein - that dude who Hank Azaria had played in Cradle Will Rock

Watch it. It starts out all ponderous and cheesy, but stick with it. Hell, embrace it.


* I am not, nor ever have been, a member of the Communist Party. Although, I am a Wobbly.

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