Beckett the killer pug was taking me for a walk the other day while I listened to a podcast or three. After a few hours of peeing on trees and licking the dew from morning grass and counting the barges that traverse the Rhein, I decided enough was enough and told the old mutt to take me home. He did. He then fed me a late morning breakfast and proceeded to find a place on the couch to take a late morning nap. Motivated from a podcast and after consuming too much post nap coffee I decided to re-watch the movie Wag The Dog. I couldn’t remember the last time I saw it. But I’ve seen it at least once before going back to the early 2000s. I think I might have tried to watch it a second time after that but gave up on the film. I remember when the movie came out around 1997/8. It was somewhat of a hit within the stretched minds of German intellectuals–who always get a kick out of laughing at my beloved #americant. For the life of me, though, I couldn’t remember what the film was about. But I vividly remember that other 90s political film Primary Colors. Um.
Something obviously motivated me to re-watch Wag The Dog. Damn podcasts! So I purchased a rental verison of it via Apple’s krappy streaming system and by 5pm had consumed it. Then I realised something.
Say, this would be a good movie to watch with my über intellectual better-half.
I was sure she hadn’t seen it and since we’ve been going back and forth about Trump and #americant politics lately, this would be a good show starter for an evening of dilemma or love. Indeed. Since I was late at preparing dinner, I jumped to the task and whipped up something delicious (as usual). After feeding my better-half, I surprised her with…
Hey, baby. How ’bout a film?
Being the stoic German female she’s always been, I had to first inform her a bit about the movie, which I proceeded to do. Her skepticism aside, I poured her a glass of Spanish red wine, put the cheese and cracker plate on the table next to her couch and then hit the play button on the really, really stupid little aluminium Apple remote control device. Within the first twenty minutes she was bitten. By the time it was over she had loved both my cheese plate, the wine and was asking:
- Why hadn’t I seen it before?
- Why hadn’t I told her about it?
Short story long. It was a nice marital bonding evening. I guess. And so…
By the next morning the movie had triggered something in my mind. It took me back to the 90s when the world had learned the specificities of things like blowjobs and protein stains on blue dresses. In the film the president allegedly had an affaire with an underage girl. Technology in the form of network connected gadgets was gonna take us into the future. At the beginning of the movie there is a Palm Pilot device. And in order to be famous you should make a sextape with your gadgets that features blowjobs because in the future those sextapes, morally and ethically, will pale in comparison to what a broken society can be made to do after it’s been so thoroughly manipulated. Even though the sextapes have nothing to do with Wag The Dog, thinking of the 90s just brought that out of me. Indeed. While watching a film I was re-living a past worth forgetting and there were these titillating images of Paris Hilton, Kim Kardashian and a few stupid white people haunting humanity.
Why does the dog wag its tail?
Because a dog is smarter than its tail.
If the tail were smarter, it would wag the dog. (-BS from the beginning of the movie)
Back to the present.
How is it that a movie like Wag The Dog can be so misinterpreted so many years after its inception? Easy. It’s the same as with The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. Comedy is ok as long as it stays funny. Go beyond funny…. That show was about one thing and one thing only. Make fun of politics. I’m sure its audience thought it was funny, too. You know, people thought that the show was actually political–or about politics and those stupid white men who are in it. But consider this, dear worst-reader. Making fun of something is no different than dismissing it. Dismissing something also means that you run from it. The grave error of Wag The Dog–or the error of people putting such a film on any kind of pedestal–is that in the end all one does is avoid reality. Another by-product of reality avoidance, btw, is conspiracy theorising.
In the podcast that motivated me to re-watch Wag The Dog, the film is lauded as a work of genius that fortold the future about how the #americant public can be easily manipulated. This fortelling, of course, is embodied in Robert DeNiro’s character who plays a kind of political spin-doctor for the president but actually looks like a professor that lost tenor. The podcast also mentioned how DeNiro & Co, in order to manipulate further, come up with things like The B-3 Bomber and a military special unit called The 303. The podcast was comparing all the krapp from the movie with what Trump is doing and, of course, how conspiratorial it all is. Oh my. This use of the number three, btw, is supposed to have some kind of conspiracy theory significance about the fate of the world–and more importantly the fate of #americants that both can’t pay their mortgage because they can’t afford the rest of their gluttonous credit card consumption or their God fearing sex practices that linger in their minds while being sexually repressed to the hilt. Oh my.
But before I get too off subject. The movie Primary Colors left a bit more of an impression on me because it didn’t have to use so much innuendo and conspiracy theorising to tell its story. It was basically the same movie but it got a bit closer to the self inflicted misery of a greed society run amok and how that society elects its politicians. It’s also a bit clearer about how those politicians actually behave in a game facilitated by an inept and ignorant society. Indeed. John Travolta deserved more recognition as President than Dustin Hoffman got as Producer. But then again, what do I know about movies?
And here’s the catcher that worst-writer should have been worst-writing about the whole time in this post.
David Mamet was in a bit of a feud over who should get screen writing credits for Wag The Dog. That about says everything about this film. Well, that and the fact that Primary Colors was pretty much being made at the same time says something, too. Mamet is without a doubt a brilliant writer but he also a money grubbing shitbag that thinks just like a faux newz old white man that never really found a place to put his cock or his misery so he puts it on others in the name of some kind of political ideology that, according to California, treads on me. Or maybe not.
Nomatter. I think I’m gonna re-watch Primary Colors in the hope that it will purge the nonsense of Wag The Dog from my system.