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"Sicario" Is a "No Country for Old Men" Quasi-Sequel
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I went to the $3 theater and saw Sicario, an ambitious thriller about the FBI, CIA, and Delta Force battling a Mexican drug cartel on the border. Unlike Spectre, this film was presumably not subsidized by the Mexican government’s tourist agency. The scenes set in Mexico will make you want to vacation instead in, say, Denali National Park.

Sicario is clearly modeled upon the Peak Coen Brothers art-pulp classic No Country for Old Men. The Coens don’t do sequels, so I guess it’s okay for French Canadian director Denis Villeneuve to make a movie that’s very much in the mode of No Country.

Roger Deakins did the cinematography for both movies. Josh Brolin is back from No Country, this time playing a cheerful CIA man. Benicio del Toro (who won an Oscar playing a Mexican policeman in Traffic in 2000) substitutes for Javier Bardem in the Anton Chigurh role of unstoppable killing machine. Bardem and del Toro are two of my favorite movie stars, and del Toro does okay with the concept of a semi-humanized Anton Chigurh, a Terminator with some remnants of a conscience.

Emily Blunt is cast as an FBI agent/waif who slowly figures out that she really doesn’t belong in a workplace full of ruthless men with large guns.

Sicario is maybe 80% as good as No Country, which isn’t bad. The plot even makes more sense than Cormac McCarthy’s novel No Country, which is pitched at kind of a scary campfire story level of realism. On the other hand, Sicario doesn’t have the kind of mythic grandeur of No Country. It’s more like Stephen Soderbergh’s 2000 ensemble Mexican drug cartel movie Traffic, an intelligent, well-made film that, for better or worse, doesn’t haunt your nightmares like No Country.

 
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  1. gbloco says:
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  2. Dave Pinsen says: • Website

    Did Emily Blunt sort of eclipse Keira Knightly? Are there not enough movies for both of them?

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    • Replies: @gbloco
    Keira Knightly never did action movies, mainly costume dramas and yes IMHO Emily Blunt is way hotter
    , @Hapalong Cassidy
    I never understood Hollywood's obsession with the boyish-looking Knightly.
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  3. gbloco says:
    @Dave Pinsen
    Did Emily Blunt sort of eclipse Keira Knightly? Are there not enough movies for both of them?

    Keira Knightly never did action movies, mainly costume dramas and yes IMHO Emily Blunt is way hotter

    Read More
    • Replies: @Twinkie

    Keira Knightly never did action movies, mainly costume dramas and yes IMHO Emily Blunt is way hotter
     
    I have never seen Keira Knightly in a role such as the one that Emily Blunt played in "Young Victoria." Blunt is not a classical beauty, but was positively luminescent in that role.

    I think the closest Knightly ever came to that kind of glow was probably in "Silk" with Michael Pitt.
    , @Ivy
    But who could forget the Knightly star turn in the forgettable movie about Domino Harvey? http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0421054/?ref_=nm_flmg_act_27
    , @Gato de la Biblioteca
    Did you miss the Pirate movies?
    , @BurplesonAFB
    Pirates of the Caribbean was a costume drama?
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  4. Anyone who wants to know more about the cartels in Mexico should read Don Winslow’s two excellent novels, Power of the Dog and The Cartel. The Power of the Dog chronicles the rise of the cartels from the 70s and on through the 80s and 90s. The Cartel covers the cartel wars in the 2000s. As someone who has an interest in this subject, I can say that Don Winslow has done his research and did not embellished much in his novels as pretty much everything in the novels are based on actual incidents.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Kirt
    Winslow's books would make a great mini-series. I have only two reservations. He's a bit too sympathetic to the sociopathic DEA agent and the character who is obviously based on "El Chapo" Guzman gets killed in the end. Of course, the real "El Chapo" got sprung from prison a second time and is still at large. Winslow missed the opportunity for another sequel.
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  5. There’s seems to be an ascendancy of narcos in the media with Netflix’s Narcos a success which will probably lead to more narco tv shows and Ridley Scott’s next film is another cartel film.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    There was a Mexican narco cartel show on NBC (?) in 2000. It didn't last long. Mexico doesn't much interest white Americans, other than Celtic Catholics like Cormac McCarthy, Vince Gilligan, and Mel Gibson.
    , @MarkinLA
    There are plenty of Latin American telenovelas about drug trafficking. If you have netflix you can see them. Some have over a hundred episodes so must come on more than once a week back in the countries they were made.
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  6. Lugash says:

    I saw this when it first hit theaters due to the Oscar buzz. It’s good, but the audience is kept dark along with Blunt’s character. You just have to role with it.

    A few plot points are a bit contrived. Why are there bodies in the walls and drug tunnels don’t exit in the middle of the desert. For anyone familiar with the Arizona locations you know they’re not the real places, but it captures the feel.

    I got the feeling that the film was hinting at real life events a la DoJ gun running.

    Steve, you should check out the indie file Blue Ruin.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Kevin O'Keeffe
    "Steve, you should check out the indie file Blue Ruin."

    Yes, "Blue Ruin" is excellent.
    , @Jus' Sayin'...
    "I got the feeling that the film was hinting at real life events a la DoJ gun running. "

    For me it was more than a feeling. I currently work as an epidemiologist studying substance abuse. Previously I worked in criminal justice and counter-terrorism policy. I like to keep up in all these areas. I later explained to others who saw the movie how it appears increasingly likely that the US DoJ, DHS, and other agencies actually did hatch a high level conspiracy with the Mexican government to support one cartel and make it the dominant player in order to reduce inter-cartel competition and violence. Part of this involved expediting this cartel's shipments of drugs into the US. Of course it was only a coincidence that the chosen cartel had close associations with an ex Mexican president and his buddies, the Bushs. It was also only a coincidence that all the "Fast and Furious" firearms seem to have gone to this cartel.
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  7. ***SPOILER ALERT***

    I really enjoyed Sicario. It’s one of the few movies I’ve seen lately that I want to see again. However, one character that didn’t make much sense was Reggie, Kate’s best buddy on the police force . What was his purpose in the narrative? Normally, the best buddy–especially if he’s black, like Reggie–is going to show up at the end and save the day, or perform some other important function. Reggie just disappeared in the last 20 minutes of the movie. (I don’t recall him appearing after the scene in the tunnel.) Here’s what I suspect: he was one of the narco-affiliated cops that the crooked American cop, Ted, ratted out, and that plot element was edited out of the movie at some point.

    Reasons:
    –He was standing far enough away from the explosion in the opening that he wasn’t injured. (Probably not too significant.)
    –He seemed to want to tag along on Kate’s mission–why?
    –He introduced Kate to Ted–why?
    –Under torture, Ted confessed there were other cops that served the cartel, but nothing came of that. Why mention that if it had no follow-up?
    –It would fit in with the theme of the movie: you can’t trust anyone, nothing is what it seems, all your ideals will be destroyed.

    If Reggie was a rat, it would have given the story more punch, made Kate’s disillusionment at the end more complete. If my theory is correct, perhaps that revelation was edited out when it tested poorly with focus groups. You don’t want the one black guy in the movie to be revealed as corrupt!

    Read More
    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    "Here’s what I suspect: he was one of the narco-affiliated cops that the crooked American cop, Ted, ratted out, and that plot element was edited out of the movie at some point."

    Yup, that makes sense and it would make it a more powerful movie if the black partner turned out to be one of the bad guys too. It would add interest to Emily Blunt's main character role, who gets kind of lost as Benicio's role grows.
    , @Clyde

    However, one character that didn’t make much sense was Reggie, Kate’s best buddy on the police force . What was his purpose in the narrative?
     
    He is there as counterpoint to Kate and for marketing reasons, to draw in black moviegoers here and abroad. If I made Sicario Reggie would be in it. Whoever acted Reggie did a good job.
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  8. WGG [AKA "World's Greatest Grandson"] says:

    Didn’t like No Country For Old Men or McCarthy ‘s Viggo Mortensen vehicle Cannibal Causeway. Thought they both had the realism of at best Forrest Gump, but were in no way that self aware or entertaining.

    But then, Steve love love loves David Lynch who comes off to me like the ultimate hack. A less talented, less humble Terry Gilliam. Lynch is quite possibly a secret Juggalo who has a sexual fetish for Mondo Cane.

    Read More
    • Replies: @BenKenobi
    The documentary or the obscure Mike Patton album?
    , @Seth Largo
    You have bad taste.
    , @SFG
    Hey, I'm down with the clown, and I'm down for life, yo.
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  9. @emilio zapata
    There's seems to be an ascendancy of narcos in the media with Netflix's Narcos a success which will probably lead to more narco tv shows and Ridley Scott's next film is another cartel film.

    There was a Mexican narco cartel show on NBC (?) in 2000. It didn’t last long. Mexico doesn’t much interest white Americans, other than Celtic Catholics like Cormac McCarthy, Vince Gilligan, and Mel Gibson.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Twinkie

    There was a Mexican narco cartel show on NBC (?) in 2000. It didn’t last long. Mexico doesn’t much interest white Americans
     
    There is also "Gang Related" from 2014, which did not renew after one season.

    It had Ramon Rodriguez and Jay Hernandez as main characters (also with Terry O'Quinn as the top cop and Cliff Curtis as the head of a Mexican-American crime family; Curtis has since moved on to "Fear the Walking Dead").

    It seems to me that in much of American mass media Asians and Hispanics are background noise at most. One often sees more black doctors (!) on TV than Asian ones. Meanwhile Hispanics nowadays seem to have replaced blacks as loyal, often lovable, sidekicks. Blacks now often play the main characters or significant, authoritative or otherwise highly intelligent characters such as doctors and scientists... or presidents.

    This skewed media portrayal is also the main reason why many foreigners still think that the U.S. racial composition is something like 70% white, 30% black and little else. In real life, on the contrary, in many affluent areas and high-paying industries, the composition is more like 70% white and 30% Asian while on the other side of the tracks, the downscale areas and manual laborers seem to be 70% Hispanic and 30% white.

    I live in a stereotypical super zip code, and there is hardly any black or Hispanic. There is a poorer area some distance off, and it is mostly Hispanic (they provide the manual labor force for my zip code along with some blue collar whites who are often the skilled tradesmen or foremen - the guys who can communicate with clients).
    , @chrisOZ
    The Netflix series Narcos is actually about Escobar and Colombia, where it was filmed on location. Despite being handicapped by the main character being a murderous gangster it's ambitious and compelling TV. The production values make huge shows like CSI (let alone stuff on cable) look like hokey relics and i had no idea that Netflix had that kind of cash or ambitions. I hope it works for them.
    , @Anonymous
    Interesting point about those Celtic Catholics. They're also known for their depictions of violence, and traditional Catholic aesthetics has a lurid quality to it relative to the more plain and austere Protestant aesthetic. They remind me of another Celtic Catholic, Flannery O'Connor and Southern Gothic. They all seem to have an interest in relatively backward, non-bourgeois cultures characterized by violent fatalism.
    , @Sunbeam
    "Mexico doesn’t much interest white Americans, other than Celtic Catholics like Cormac McCarthy, Vince Gilligan, and Mel Gibson."

    You might be right about this, not something I've spent a ton of time thinking about.

    But to me it seems like there are so many stories that happened in the America's that would be fascinating subjects for movies or mini-series.

    Gibson's Apocalyptico is an example of this kind of thing, though I understand most think he didn't pull it off. (And reading the plot description for that movie makes you go WTF if you have even my cursory knowledge of the subject matter).

    But the Inca and their empire...

    Or the Aztecs. Montezuma was batshit crazy on a level Caligula or Nero couldn't possibly imagine.

    Just saying you could get a heck of a miniseries or Game of Thrones type thing about the Aztecs. And the pedantist in me would insist on not a white face in the crowd (well unless they could plausibly play the role, no Wayne as Genghis Khan in my moviemaking).

    Well my tastes are probably not the same as most Americans. But I'd love to see an Aztec thing like Game of Thrones. And the blood factor would make Game look like Sesame Street. Guess we could work in boobs too.

    But nah. We get I, Claudius or something for the umpteenth time on PBS.

    "Elites" are pretty myopic. They don't tend to notice just how committed they are to watching Brits play Romans, or imaginary fantasy world people, or whatever. But got to have that particular geographic grouping of accents.
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  10. @Harry Baldwin
    ***SPOILER ALERT***

    I really enjoyed Sicario. It's one of the few movies I've seen lately that I want to see again. However, one character that didn't make much sense was Reggie, Kate's best buddy on the police force . What was his purpose in the narrative? Normally, the best buddy--especially if he's black, like Reggie--is going to show up at the end and save the day, or perform some other important function. Reggie just disappeared in the last 20 minutes of the movie. (I don't recall him appearing after the scene in the tunnel.) Here's what I suspect: he was one of the narco-affiliated cops that the crooked American cop, Ted, ratted out, and that plot element was edited out of the movie at some point.

    Reasons:
    --He was standing far enough away from the explosion in the opening that he wasn't injured. (Probably not too significant.)
    --He seemed to want to tag along on Kate's mission--why?
    --He introduced Kate to Ted--why?
    --Under torture, Ted confessed there were other cops that served the cartel, but nothing came of that. Why mention that if it had no follow-up?
    --It would fit in with the theme of the movie: you can't trust anyone, nothing is what it seems, all your ideals will be destroyed.

    If Reggie was a rat, it would have given the story more punch, made Kate's disillusionment at the end more complete. If my theory is correct, perhaps that revelation was edited out when it tested poorly with focus groups. You don't want the one black guy in the movie to be revealed as corrupt!

    “Here’s what I suspect: he was one of the narco-affiliated cops that the crooked American cop, Ted, ratted out, and that plot element was edited out of the movie at some point.”

    Yup, that makes sense and it would make it a more powerful movie if the black partner turned out to be one of the bad guys too. It would add interest to Emily Blunt’s main character role, who gets kind of lost as Benicio’s role grows.

    Read More
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  11. Clyde says:

    Skyfall was the last time I had been in a movie theater, meaning that I don’t mind waiting for the DVD, cable TV or skipping most movies. I saw no point to and no plot in the pre-Obama 2007 “No Country for Old Men”. Sicario, I really liked the slickness, the cinematography and high production values, which emphasized Sicaro’s own desiccated landscape of despair. Sicario gave me the intense version of what really goes down at the Mexican border. The plot included the modernized drug running tunnels, the tortured bodies, the ugliness of Juarez and by extension all of Mexico. In this movie every day is The Day of the Dead down there.

    The shootouts were well executed, with the best one being at the border crossing back into America. It was a smart move to make the central character a woman (Emily Blunt), though Benicio Del Toro stole the show from her. The Obama voting Josh Brolin was his usual screen filling masculinity.
    Breaking Bad without the dark humor, Sicario did not peter out. The finale was well scripted and satisfying. Justice had been rendered, which I cannot say for No Country.

    As an aside: Joe Bob Briggs summary would be, “….with a grand total of two hundred wrecked vehicles and people killed”.

    Read More
    • Replies: @BenKenobi
    I'm afraid that Justice was not rendered in No Country quite deliberately.
    , @Reg Cæsar

    As an aside: Joe Bob Briggs summary would be, “….with a grand total of two hundred wrecked vehicles and people killed”.

     

    One of the highbrow film criticism journals had a monthly guest column where major cinema figures and critics could unload their "guilty pleasures".

    One issue it was Briggs, and he turned it upside-down. He really gets into the arthouse stuff from the Sixties-- Bergman, Fellini, "Last Year at Marienbad", etc.

    Roger Corman is the same way. On a recent retrospective DVD he confessed to the same, and actually was Bergman's US distributor for a while, out of genuine interest.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  12. Clyde says:
    @Harry Baldwin
    ***SPOILER ALERT***

    I really enjoyed Sicario. It's one of the few movies I've seen lately that I want to see again. However, one character that didn't make much sense was Reggie, Kate's best buddy on the police force . What was his purpose in the narrative? Normally, the best buddy--especially if he's black, like Reggie--is going to show up at the end and save the day, or perform some other important function. Reggie just disappeared in the last 20 minutes of the movie. (I don't recall him appearing after the scene in the tunnel.) Here's what I suspect: he was one of the narco-affiliated cops that the crooked American cop, Ted, ratted out, and that plot element was edited out of the movie at some point.

    Reasons:
    --He was standing far enough away from the explosion in the opening that he wasn't injured. (Probably not too significant.)
    --He seemed to want to tag along on Kate's mission--why?
    --He introduced Kate to Ted--why?
    --Under torture, Ted confessed there were other cops that served the cartel, but nothing came of that. Why mention that if it had no follow-up?
    --It would fit in with the theme of the movie: you can't trust anyone, nothing is what it seems, all your ideals will be destroyed.

    If Reggie was a rat, it would have given the story more punch, made Kate's disillusionment at the end more complete. If my theory is correct, perhaps that revelation was edited out when it tested poorly with focus groups. You don't want the one black guy in the movie to be revealed as corrupt!

    However, one character that didn’t make much sense was Reggie, Kate’s best buddy on the police force . What was his purpose in the narrative?

    He is there as counterpoint to Kate and for marketing reasons, to draw in black moviegoers here and abroad. If I made Sicario Reggie would be in it. Whoever acted Reggie did a good job.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Harry Baldwin
    If I made Sicario Reggie would be in it. Whoever acted Reggie did a good job.

    What struck me when I was watching the movie was that he didn't look African American, he looked African. In fact, the actor, Daniel Kaluuya, is from England, the son of immigrants from Uganda.
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  13. BenKenobi says:
    @WGG
    Didn't like No Country For Old Men or McCarthy 's Viggo Mortensen vehicle Cannibal Causeway. Thought they both had the realism of at best Forrest Gump, but were in no way that self aware or entertaining.

    But then, Steve love love loves David Lynch who comes off to me like the ultimate hack. A less talented, less humble Terry Gilliam. Lynch is quite possibly a secret Juggalo who has a sexual fetish for Mondo Cane.

    The documentary or the obscure Mike Patton album?

    Read More
    • Replies: @WGG
    I meant the Italian film, although Lynch has put out some "music" that imitates the awful farting and fapping noises Patton has laid track with. And I am somewhat of a Patton fan, but not the cringy art house crap.
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  14. BenKenobi says:
    @Clyde
    Skyfall was the last time I had been in a movie theater, meaning that I don't mind waiting for the DVD, cable TV or skipping most movies. I saw no point to and no plot in the pre-Obama 2007 "No Country for Old Men". Sicario, I really liked the slickness, the cinematography and high production values, which emphasized Sicaro's own desiccated landscape of despair. Sicario gave me the intense version of what really goes down at the Mexican border. The plot included the modernized drug running tunnels, the tortured bodies, the ugliness of Juarez and by extension all of Mexico. In this movie every day is The Day of the Dead down there.

    The shootouts were well executed, with the best one being at the border crossing back into America. It was a smart move to make the central character a woman (Emily Blunt), though Benicio Del Toro stole the show from her. The Obama voting Josh Brolin was his usual screen filling masculinity.
    Breaking Bad without the dark humor, Sicario did not peter out. The finale was well scripted and satisfying. Justice had been rendered, which I cannot say for No Country.

    As an aside: Joe Bob Briggs summary would be, "....with a grand total of two hundred wrecked vehicles and people killed".

    I’m afraid that Justice was not rendered in No Country quite deliberately.

    Read More
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  15. donut says:

    I posted this befoo but I will again .

    Read More
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  16. Twinkie says:
    @Steve Sailer
    There was a Mexican narco cartel show on NBC (?) in 2000. It didn't last long. Mexico doesn't much interest white Americans, other than Celtic Catholics like Cormac McCarthy, Vince Gilligan, and Mel Gibson.

    There was a Mexican narco cartel show on NBC (?) in 2000. It didn’t last long. Mexico doesn’t much interest white Americans

    There is also “Gang Related” from 2014, which did not renew after one season.

    It had Ramon Rodriguez and Jay Hernandez as main characters (also with Terry O’Quinn as the top cop and Cliff Curtis as the head of a Mexican-American crime family; Curtis has since moved on to “Fear the Walking Dead”).

    It seems to me that in much of American mass media Asians and Hispanics are background noise at most. One often sees more black doctors (!) on TV than Asian ones. Meanwhile Hispanics nowadays seem to have replaced blacks as loyal, often lovable, sidekicks. Blacks now often play the main characters or significant, authoritative or otherwise highly intelligent characters such as doctors and scientists… or presidents.

    This skewed media portrayal is also the main reason why many foreigners still think that the U.S. racial composition is something like 70% white, 30% black and little else. In real life, on the contrary, in many affluent areas and high-paying industries, the composition is more like 70% white and 30% Asian while on the other side of the tracks, the downscale areas and manual laborers seem to be 70% Hispanic and 30% white.

    I live in a stereotypical super zip code, and there is hardly any black or Hispanic. There is a poorer area some distance off, and it is mostly Hispanic (they provide the manual labor force for my zip code along with some blue collar whites who are often the skilled tradesmen or foremen – the guys who can communicate with clients).

    Read More
    • Replies: @Clyde

    in many affluent areas and high-paying industries, the composition is more like 70% white and 30% Asian
     
    Partly due to Asian legal immigration being greater than Hispanic during the last ten years. Pew came out with this.

    In a Shift, Biggest Wave of Migrants Is Now Asian
    By Kirk Semple June 18, 2012
    Asians have surpassed Hispanics as the largest wave of new immigrants to the United States, pushing the population of Asian descent to a record 18.2 million and helping to make Asians the fastest-growing racial group in the country, according to a study released Tuesday by the Pew Research Center.
     
    , @Jefferson
    "One often sees more black doctors (!) on TV than Asian ones."

    On Grey's Anatomy, like half of the doctors on the show are Black even though it is suppose to take place in Seattle where Blacks make up only 7 percent of the population. You would think it took place in Atlanta or Washington DC.

    Apparently Seattle attracts most of the country's brightest triple digit IQ Blacks, hence their vast over representation in Seattle's medical industry in the fictional world of Grey's Anatomy.

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  17. Whiskey says: • Website

    Keira Knightly was in those awful Pirates movies, and that King Arthur movie. So she’s done some action movies.

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    • Replies: @gbloco
    Costume action movies!!!!
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  18. Anon says: • Disclaimer

    The frightening stalker movie:

    Night of the Hunter

    The Hitcher (bad movie)

    Blade Runner (unstoppable Batty)

    Deliverance

    Cape Fear

    Halloween

    Wolfen

    Day of the Jackal

    The Last Wave

    The Searchers (stalker as hero) ‘the poet of hatred’

    Heartbreak Kid (the relentless horny Jew)

    The Overnight (surely one of the stupidest movies ever made about a Jew with the meater stalking a gentile dude)

    Collateral (though it would have been more effective with someone other than Cruise)

    Bourne Supremacy (stalker as vengeful hero)

    Get Carter, Bring Me Garcia’s Head, and Point Blank also have the unstoppable killer avenger as hero.

    Last of Mohicans. Chingachkook was near-unstoppable.

    Funny Games and Cache (endless harassment by stalkers)

    Kalifornia (bad movie)

    PS. Actually, NO COUNTRY isn’t as horrifying as THE COUNSELOR, one of the few films that chilled me to my bones. It’s like RISKY BUSINESS on steroids.
    NO COUNTRY is mostly physical. THE COUNSELOR is about the extinction of values. It strips the soul naked and reduces one to a sex slave bitch of globalism. Makes one feel as helpless and powerless as Ned Beatty in Deliverance.

    Manchurian Candidate is strange cuz it’s about a man who is stalked by himself. He’s been programmed to destroy all that he loves and holds dear. Prophetic as white males are brainwashed to do things that are most harmful to the self.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Scotty G. Vito
    The Heartbreak Kid w/ Charles Grodin was a "frightening stalker movie?" After how many bong hits?
    , @Reg Cæsar

    Get Carter, Bring Me Garcia’s Head, and Point Blank also have the unstoppable killer avenger as hero.

     

    "The Head of Alfredo Garcia" would make a nice edgy name for a Mexican restaurant, don't you think? Not sure what the sign should look like, though...
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  19. Twinkie says:

    It’s more like Stephen Soderbergh’s 2000 ensemble Mexican drug cartel movie Traffic, an intelligent, well-made film that, for better or worse, doesn’t haunt your nightmares like No Country.

    1. I thought “Traffic” was quite derivative. It is literally based on the superior 1989 British-German mini-series “Traffik” (with the always excellent Lindsay Duncan in the role that Catherine Zeta-Jones later reprised considerably less ably).

    2. McCarthy’s “The Road” did haunt my dreams. I had nightmares afterwards that my wife and I would die suddenly and leave our children as orphans (in those dreams, they did not quite end up in a cannibalistic post-apocalyptic world, but the younger ones were handed over to social services).

    McCarthy’s writings are very beautiful, bleak, and extremely evocative if hazy (like a feverish dream). It’s said that fiction and film can sometimes capture some essence of reality better than non-fiction and documentaries. I think his writings are an example of this rare occurrence.

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  20. chrisOZ says:

    I feel like it had some incredible sequences and strikingly immersive cinematography but Blunt’s character didn’t convince me as a protaganist as she had nothing much to do with events other than to be the audiences witness to them. No Country For Old Men had a real sense of fully-developed characters struggling with their morality and priorities when faced with an evil they don’t comprehend. Sicarrio’s message was ultimately that all people and institutions are corrupt and their pursuits nihilistic; the same old non-point that renders stuff like Game of Thrones and House of Cards so hollow to me.

    Now if you want to see the real deal when it comes to the cartels and the true meaning of “corruption” in poor and violent societies then the recent documentary Cartelland is where to go. I wont spoil anything but it follows the rise and fall of the Autofamilias groups that were drawn from local communities to challenge both the cartels and the Mexican State. The whole thing plays out like a Greek tragedy but focuses on their founder and the cameras were on for the whole thing.

    Mexico is one crazy place, i will say that much.

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  21. WGG [AKA "World's Greatest Grandson"] says:
    @BenKenobi
    The documentary or the obscure Mike Patton album?

    I meant the Italian film, although Lynch has put out some “music” that imitates the awful farting and fapping noises Patton has laid track with. And I am somewhat of a Patton fan, but not the cringy art house crap.

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  22. Twinkie says:
    @gbloco
    Keira Knightly never did action movies, mainly costume dramas and yes IMHO Emily Blunt is way hotter

    Keira Knightly never did action movies, mainly costume dramas and yes IMHO Emily Blunt is way hotter

    I have never seen Keira Knightly in a role such as the one that Emily Blunt played in “Young Victoria.” Blunt is not a classical beauty, but was positively luminescent in that role.

    I think the closest Knightly ever came to that kind of glow was probably in “Silk” with Michael Pitt.

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  23. No Country is overrated. The plot is like gossamer. The villain’s dull. Josh Brolin groupies aside — there is definitely one of them around here — no one has ever offered an honest explanation of what’s so compelling about the turgid recreation of a frankly boring novel. Btw anybody rent “The Artist” or “The King’s Speech” in the last 24 months? Didn’t think so

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    • Replies: @Dave Pinsen
    Everyone was too busy renting Birdman.
    , @Seth Largo
    You have bad taste, too.
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  24. @Anon
    The frightening stalker movie:

    Night of the Hunter

    The Hitcher (bad movie)

    Blade Runner (unstoppable Batty)

    Deliverance

    Cape Fear

    Halloween

    Wolfen

    Day of the Jackal

    The Last Wave

    The Searchers (stalker as hero) 'the poet of hatred'

    https://youtu.be/SlWT8kTccHw?t=1m36s

    Heartbreak Kid (the relentless horny Jew)

    The Overnight (surely one of the stupidest movies ever made about a Jew with the meater stalking a gentile dude)

    Collateral (though it would have been more effective with someone other than Cruise)

    Bourne Supremacy (stalker as vengeful hero)

    Get Carter, Bring Me Garcia's Head, and Point Blank also have the unstoppable killer avenger as hero.

    Last of Mohicans. Chingachkook was near-unstoppable.

    Funny Games and Cache (endless harassment by stalkers)

    Kalifornia (bad movie)

    PS. Actually, NO COUNTRY isn't as horrifying as THE COUNSELOR, one of the few films that chilled me to my bones. It's like RISKY BUSINESS on steroids.
    NO COUNTRY is mostly physical. THE COUNSELOR is about the extinction of values. It strips the soul naked and reduces one to a sex slave bitch of globalism. Makes one feel as helpless and powerless as Ned Beatty in Deliverance.

    Manchurian Candidate is strange cuz it's about a man who is stalked by himself. He's been programmed to destroy all that he loves and holds dear. Prophetic as white males are brainwashed to do things that are most harmful to the self.

    The Heartbreak Kid w/ Charles Grodin was a “frightening stalker movie?” After how many bong hits?

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    • Replies: @Anon
    "The Heartbreak Kid w/ Charles Grodin was a 'frightening stalker movie?' After how many bong hits?"

    Matter of boing, not bong. Ask Beavis.

    It' s not horror-movie frightening, but it's very disturbing. When I saw the movie long ago as a child on network TV, I found it mildly amusing. I didn't even see it as a Jewish vs Wasp thing. Just some story about a guy who ditches a dumpy wife for a blonde. But once you get the ethnic angle on this, it gets a bit crazy.

    Sure, it's a comedy and it's pretty funny. But the passive/aggressive doggedness of the guy to get into the blonde shikse's pants is as maniacal as Ethan Edward's search for Debbie.
    There was something about the wasp vs ethnic thing in that era. GODFATHER II with Michael v the Wasp Senator. Michael did get the wasp Kay, but she turned out to be the killer in the family. Harold and Maude with wasp world vs Jewish maude, with Harold being saved by Maude's anarchism. Love Story with its crusty wasp rich guy and Italian-American girl.

    The battle of the womb thing in THE SEARCHERS had special meaning to a lot of ethnic writers and directors who were trying to get into the pants of blonde shikses of rich Wasp fathers. As such, they both identified with Ethan and saw him as the enemy. Ethan, like Braddock in The Graduate, won't give up. He's gonna find Debbie. But he is also the white man trying to stop a white girl from being taken by a savage.

    Ethnic artists and directors would have identified with his obsessive drive but also been intimidated(and fascinated and offended by) his feeling of sexual exclusivity.
    Also, even as ethnic guys were angry with the Wasp sexual wall, they were mindful of keeping their own walls against blacks. It's like Tommy in GOODFELLAS and 'sammy davis jr'.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GrkKL45qB0Q
    There is some of this in EXORCIST too. A Nordic priest as father figure does battle to save a young white girl's pooter from being invaded by some demonic figure unleashed in swarthy land of Arabs. The priest is like Ethan Edwards, the devil is like Scar. In Taxi Driver, things get complicated cuz Bickle is ethnically ambiguous. Is he Anglo or ethnic? He get rejected by Cybil Shepherd but tries to salvage something 'pure' from the world of filth. Ironically, she sees him as part of the filth.

    In some way, the Jewish searcher/seeker/hunter is more unsettling. Someone like Chigurh or Terminator is easy to understand. He is a fearsome killer that acts like a killer.
    But the Jewish character like Braddock and Grodin in Heartbreak Kid is passive/aggressive. Teddy Bear Cuddly on the outside but relentless like the voodoo doll in Trilogy of Terror.

    https://youtu.be/nra7OmV1IzE?t=11m10s

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sWJAnG8pLWg

    Because Heartbreak Kid is funny(and was handled with a warmer woman's touch of Elaine May), it seems like a mild comedy. But it's actually a very disturbed film that, minus the humor, would be pretty creepy.

    The father in it finally relents... but the father in FOUR FRIENDS is made of tougher stuff against the upstart ethnic:

    https://youtu.be/sSo9PTT5Rb0?t=1h7m1s

    He goes totally Angel(Wild Bunch) on the couple.

    The reigning narrative says that ethnic or black men who go chasing after blonde white women are just spreading love and breaking down walls. And white fathers who oppose this stuff are 'racists' and 'haters' or 'poets of hatred'.

    But HEARTBREAK RIDGE goes a bit further than such pat formulations. The Jewish guy rudely and insensitively dumps his own wife. His inter-ethnicism is itself a kind of exclusionism. He excludes Jewish women from his life in preference of the 'shikse'.
    Even as he challenges the girl's father, he effectively rejects his own Jewish world and enters the wasp world. He breaks prejudices but also revels in it because he is obviously convinced that wasp beauty is far superior to Jewish looks. Jewish women are no longer good enough for him, and he MUST get the blonde shikse to the exclusion of all other women.

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  25. chrisOZ says:
    @Steve Sailer
    There was a Mexican narco cartel show on NBC (?) in 2000. It didn't last long. Mexico doesn't much interest white Americans, other than Celtic Catholics like Cormac McCarthy, Vince Gilligan, and Mel Gibson.

    The Netflix series Narcos is actually about Escobar and Colombia, where it was filmed on location. Despite being handicapped by the main character being a murderous gangster it’s ambitious and compelling TV. The production values make huge shows like CSI (let alone stuff on cable) look like hokey relics and i had no idea that Netflix had that kind of cash or ambitions. I hope it works for them.

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  26. Clyde says:
    @Twinkie

    There was a Mexican narco cartel show on NBC (?) in 2000. It didn’t last long. Mexico doesn’t much interest white Americans
     
    There is also "Gang Related" from 2014, which did not renew after one season.

    It had Ramon Rodriguez and Jay Hernandez as main characters (also with Terry O'Quinn as the top cop and Cliff Curtis as the head of a Mexican-American crime family; Curtis has since moved on to "Fear the Walking Dead").

    It seems to me that in much of American mass media Asians and Hispanics are background noise at most. One often sees more black doctors (!) on TV than Asian ones. Meanwhile Hispanics nowadays seem to have replaced blacks as loyal, often lovable, sidekicks. Blacks now often play the main characters or significant, authoritative or otherwise highly intelligent characters such as doctors and scientists... or presidents.

    This skewed media portrayal is also the main reason why many foreigners still think that the U.S. racial composition is something like 70% white, 30% black and little else. In real life, on the contrary, in many affluent areas and high-paying industries, the composition is more like 70% white and 30% Asian while on the other side of the tracks, the downscale areas and manual laborers seem to be 70% Hispanic and 30% white.

    I live in a stereotypical super zip code, and there is hardly any black or Hispanic. There is a poorer area some distance off, and it is mostly Hispanic (they provide the manual labor force for my zip code along with some blue collar whites who are often the skilled tradesmen or foremen - the guys who can communicate with clients).

    in many affluent areas and high-paying industries, the composition is more like 70% white and 30% Asian

    Partly due to Asian legal immigration being greater than Hispanic during the last ten years. Pew came out with this.

    In a Shift, Biggest Wave of Migrants Is Now Asian
    By Kirk Semple June 18, 2012
    Asians have surpassed Hispanics as the largest wave of new immigrants to the United States, pushing the population of Asian descent to a record 18.2 million and helping to make Asians the fastest-growing racial group in the country, according to a study released Tuesday by the Pew Research Center.

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    • Replies: @unpc downunder
    Welcome to the East Asian co-prosperity sphere 2.0. Instead of rising crime and taxes you can look forward to surging house prices and crowded libraries. The role of whites in the EACS is to built houses and repair cars for middle class Asians who vacillate between running corner shops and working as white-collar professionals.
    , @Twinkie

    Partly due to Asian legal immigration being greater than Hispanic during the last ten years. Pew came out with this.
     
    Old news.

    But even if Hispanic immigration greatly outnumbered Asian immigration again, Hispanics wouldn't account for, say, 30% of the high value work force/affluent zip codes.
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  27. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer

    I didn’t see it but “Sicario” smelled to me very redolent of the “True Detective” flavor, right down to the lobby poster. Mid-to-high-end action/crime movie tastes, i.e. not the comic book adaptations, or the cartoonishly homoerotic Fast & Furious series, seem to be less technological-futuristic lately & drifting back into the hardboiled wheelhouse of Jim Thompson, Cain, and Chandler (who never really went out of style, actually)

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  28. @Clyde
    Skyfall was the last time I had been in a movie theater, meaning that I don't mind waiting for the DVD, cable TV or skipping most movies. I saw no point to and no plot in the pre-Obama 2007 "No Country for Old Men". Sicario, I really liked the slickness, the cinematography and high production values, which emphasized Sicaro's own desiccated landscape of despair. Sicario gave me the intense version of what really goes down at the Mexican border. The plot included the modernized drug running tunnels, the tortured bodies, the ugliness of Juarez and by extension all of Mexico. In this movie every day is The Day of the Dead down there.

    The shootouts were well executed, with the best one being at the border crossing back into America. It was a smart move to make the central character a woman (Emily Blunt), though Benicio Del Toro stole the show from her. The Obama voting Josh Brolin was his usual screen filling masculinity.
    Breaking Bad without the dark humor, Sicario did not peter out. The finale was well scripted and satisfying. Justice had been rendered, which I cannot say for No Country.

    As an aside: Joe Bob Briggs summary would be, "....with a grand total of two hundred wrecked vehicles and people killed".

    As an aside: Joe Bob Briggs summary would be, “….with a grand total of two hundred wrecked vehicles and people killed”.

    One of the highbrow film criticism journals had a monthly guest column where major cinema figures and critics could unload their “guilty pleasures”.

    One issue it was Briggs, and he turned it upside-down. He really gets into the arthouse stuff from the Sixties– Bergman, Fellini, “Last Year at Marienbad”, etc.

    Roger Corman is the same way. On a recent retrospective DVD he confessed to the same, and actually was Bergman’s US distributor for a while, out of genuine interest.

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  29. @Anon
    The frightening stalker movie:

    Night of the Hunter

    The Hitcher (bad movie)

    Blade Runner (unstoppable Batty)

    Deliverance

    Cape Fear

    Halloween

    Wolfen

    Day of the Jackal

    The Last Wave

    The Searchers (stalker as hero) 'the poet of hatred'

    https://youtu.be/SlWT8kTccHw?t=1m36s

    Heartbreak Kid (the relentless horny Jew)

    The Overnight (surely one of the stupidest movies ever made about a Jew with the meater stalking a gentile dude)

    Collateral (though it would have been more effective with someone other than Cruise)

    Bourne Supremacy (stalker as vengeful hero)

    Get Carter, Bring Me Garcia's Head, and Point Blank also have the unstoppable killer avenger as hero.

    Last of Mohicans. Chingachkook was near-unstoppable.

    Funny Games and Cache (endless harassment by stalkers)

    Kalifornia (bad movie)

    PS. Actually, NO COUNTRY isn't as horrifying as THE COUNSELOR, one of the few films that chilled me to my bones. It's like RISKY BUSINESS on steroids.
    NO COUNTRY is mostly physical. THE COUNSELOR is about the extinction of values. It strips the soul naked and reduces one to a sex slave bitch of globalism. Makes one feel as helpless and powerless as Ned Beatty in Deliverance.

    Manchurian Candidate is strange cuz it's about a man who is stalked by himself. He's been programmed to destroy all that he loves and holds dear. Prophetic as white males are brainwashed to do things that are most harmful to the self.

    Get Carter, Bring Me Garcia’s Head, and Point Blank also have the unstoppable killer avenger as hero.

    “The Head of Alfredo Garcia” would make a nice edgy name for a Mexican restaurant, don’t you think? Not sure what the sign should look like, though…

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    • Replies: @Hunsdon
    "Good afternoon, you have reached Cabeza de Alfredo Garcia, may I take your reservation?"
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  30. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer
    @Steve Sailer
    There was a Mexican narco cartel show on NBC (?) in 2000. It didn't last long. Mexico doesn't much interest white Americans, other than Celtic Catholics like Cormac McCarthy, Vince Gilligan, and Mel Gibson.

    Interesting point about those Celtic Catholics. They’re also known for their depictions of violence, and traditional Catholic aesthetics has a lurid quality to it relative to the more plain and austere Protestant aesthetic. They remind me of another Celtic Catholic, Flannery O’Connor and Southern Gothic. They all seem to have an interest in relatively backward, non-bourgeois cultures characterized by violent fatalism.

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    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    "Interesting point about those Celtic Catholics. They’re also known for their depictions of violence, and traditional Catholic aesthetics has a lurid quality to it relative to the more plain and austere Protestant aesthetic."

    Right. The Passion of the Christ, for example, is very Baroque Counter-Reformation in look. It was massively popular with Mexican-Americans. Sicario's movie's director is French-Canadian, so he's likely Catholic in ethnicity too.

    My impression is that Protestant American artists were sort of interested in Mexico back when it a bohemian getaway: William Burroughs, James Michener, John Wayne (he converted to Catholicism late in life under the influence of all his Latin wives), and so forth. But when America loosened up in the 1960s, Mexico faded in appeal.

    American Jews have never seemed all that interested in Mexico at all. I'm not sure why. They are interested in many other things, but Mexico just doesn't appeal to them. (I think Cuba appealed more to American Jews, and when Cuba shut down under Castro, they couldn't get up much enthusiasm for Mexico as a substitute for Cuba.)

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  31. Siccario was shot to look somewhat authentic, but it was ridiculous. This was very jarring for me.

    *plot spoilers (but of course..)

    I’ve probably forgotten most of these…

    1. The waif commanding the platoon which stormed the house was ridiculous.

    2. The platoon leader waif then clearing a room herself and by herself! This is terrible leadership and awful tactics.

    3. The dead bodies in the wall…why? The place was surrounded by desert.

    4. The fact that the other guys got the waif involved at all. They were running a very illegal show…couldn’t they just have faked a signature?

    5. Convoying through the Mexican city and selecting the same route back as in….stupid.

    6. Not just using a helicopter to pick the guy up…insane.

    7. The idea that shooting dead twenty people in a traffic jam wouldn’t make the news…hilarious. has the screenwriter never heard of twitter or mobile phone video cameras?

    The list can go on an on.

    I still liked the film sort of. The score and cinematography was good.

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    • Replies: @Harry Baldwin
    The idea that shooting dead twenty people in a traffic jam wouldn’t make the news…hilarious. has the screenwriter never heard of twitter or mobile phone video cameras?

    Hilarious because more-or-less true. It'll top the evening news that a Palestinian stabbed two Israelis in Jerusalem, but the narcos can assault a Mexican police station with automatic weapons and grenades and we will never hear about it. The National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers used to have a site, since discontinued, where they'd translate and run crime news from south of the border. Astonishing stuff that never made the American press.
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  32. Dave Pinsen says: • Website
    @Scotty G. Vito
    No Country is overrated. The plot is like gossamer. The villain's dull. Josh Brolin groupies aside -- there is definitely one of them around here -- no one has ever offered an honest explanation of what's so compelling about the turgid recreation of a frankly boring novel. Btw anybody rent "The Artist" or "The King's Speech" in the last 24 months? Didn't think so

    Everyone was too busy renting Birdman.

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  33. Chiron says:

    “Emily Blunt is cast as an FBI agent/waif who slowly figures out that she really doesn’t belong in a workplace full of ruthless men with large guns.”

    What I heard is that from the big 4 intelligence agencies (CIA, FBI, DIA ,NSA) its the CIA that has more Liberals around.

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    • Replies: @Hapalong Cassidy
    The CIA does a lot of recruiting at Ivy League schools, so it does make sense that they'd be more liberal than other intelligence agencies.

    I've always wondered what CIA pay is like. Since a lot of CIA funding comes from the "black budget", I imagine their agents aren't on the general schedule, for the most part.

    Most FBI agents are GS-13, plus a 25% overtime premium, which is pretty good.
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  34. wren says:

    The denali reference reminded me of this, done during the McKinley brouhaha.

    http://www.cagle.com/2015/09/denali-denial-2/

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  35. @Anonymous
    Interesting point about those Celtic Catholics. They're also known for their depictions of violence, and traditional Catholic aesthetics has a lurid quality to it relative to the more plain and austere Protestant aesthetic. They remind me of another Celtic Catholic, Flannery O'Connor and Southern Gothic. They all seem to have an interest in relatively backward, non-bourgeois cultures characterized by violent fatalism.

    “Interesting point about those Celtic Catholics. They’re also known for their depictions of violence, and traditional Catholic aesthetics has a lurid quality to it relative to the more plain and austere Protestant aesthetic.”

    Right. The Passion of the Christ, for example, is very Baroque Counter-Reformation in look. It was massively popular with Mexican-Americans. Sicario’s movie’s director is French-Canadian, so he’s likely Catholic in ethnicity too.

    My impression is that Protestant American artists were sort of interested in Mexico back when it a bohemian getaway: William Burroughs, James Michener, John Wayne (he converted to Catholicism late in life under the influence of all his Latin wives), and so forth. But when America loosened up in the 1960s, Mexico faded in appeal.

    American Jews have never seemed all that interested in Mexico at all. I’m not sure why. They are interested in many other things, but Mexico just doesn’t appeal to them. (I think Cuba appealed more to American Jews, and when Cuba shut down under Castro, they couldn’t get up much enthusiasm for Mexico as a substitute for Cuba.)

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    • Replies: @Chrisnonymous

    My impression is that Protestant American artists were sort of interested in Mexico back when it a bohemian getaway
     
    How do the Bush and Buckley family involvements fit in? Especially Buckley. The whole go to Texas, go to Connecticut thing with the father seemed weird, but WFB's Mexico stint never made sense to me. I always felt like there must be "another Mexico" that's hidden from me or passed from the earth 40-50 years ago.
    , @tbraton
    As I recall, Puerto Vallarta on the west coast of Mexico became a popular hangout for Hollywood types starting in the 60's, such as Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, John Huston, Jack Nicholson, Angelica Huston, after it became the setting for a movie starring Burton and directed by Huston.

    As far as the Jews' preference for Cuba goes, obviously Mexico (as far as I know) lacks legalized gambling. I have a Jewish friend I have known for nearly 20 years, and she has mentioned that she traveled to Cuba a number of times with her parents pre-Castro. She was too young to be taken to the gambling casinos, but I am sure her parents partook. Even today, she has a taste for traveling to nearby locales that have casino gambling, something that has never interested me in the least. I restrict my gambling to the stock market. I also seem to recall that modern Hollywood was created by a small number of Jewish giants (Warner, Goldwyn, Mayer, etc.) who had a strong propensity for gambling. When I moved to Florida and became an active scuba diver, the guys at my dive shop used to dream of the day Cuba became open to Americans so they could go dive there. So tastes change. From all accounts, Cuba is an incredibly beautiful country.
    , @WGG
    American filmmakers were interested in Mexico when large, sweeping cinematography was in fashion. When 2/3 of the shot is blue sky and the other third is pristine scrubland, Mexico can appear beautiful. Close up shots of dusty towns, not so much. Also when it was still ok to cast Mexicans as villainous drunk savages, they made for well recognized antagonists in a given western.
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  36. @Steve Sailer
    "Interesting point about those Celtic Catholics. They’re also known for their depictions of violence, and traditional Catholic aesthetics has a lurid quality to it relative to the more plain and austere Protestant aesthetic."

    Right. The Passion of the Christ, for example, is very Baroque Counter-Reformation in look. It was massively popular with Mexican-Americans. Sicario's movie's director is French-Canadian, so he's likely Catholic in ethnicity too.

    My impression is that Protestant American artists were sort of interested in Mexico back when it a bohemian getaway: William Burroughs, James Michener, John Wayne (he converted to Catholicism late in life under the influence of all his Latin wives), and so forth. But when America loosened up in the 1960s, Mexico faded in appeal.

    American Jews have never seemed all that interested in Mexico at all. I'm not sure why. They are interested in many other things, but Mexico just doesn't appeal to them. (I think Cuba appealed more to American Jews, and when Cuba shut down under Castro, they couldn't get up much enthusiasm for Mexico as a substitute for Cuba.)

    My impression is that Protestant American artists were sort of interested in Mexico back when it a bohemian getaway

    How do the Bush and Buckley family involvements fit in? Especially Buckley. The whole go to Texas, go to Connecticut thing with the father seemed weird, but WFB’s Mexico stint never made sense to me. I always felt like there must be “another Mexico” that’s hidden from me or passed from the earth 40-50 years ago.

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    • Replies: @Anonymous
    Buckley was Irish Catholic, and very religious.
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  37. Every time I’ve seen a Soderbergh film, I’ve had the same reaction: I think to myself “god, who made this boring crap?”, check the director, find Soderbergh.

    Why was Traffic good?

    acting weak
    plot predictable
    cinematography amateurish

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  38. slumber_j says:

    “Roger Deakins” sounds like the name of a screwball comedy director.

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  39. @Dave Pinsen
    Did Emily Blunt sort of eclipse Keira Knightly? Are there not enough movies for both of them?

    I never understood Hollywood’s obsession with the boyish-looking Knightly.

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  40. Ivy says:
    @gbloco
    Keira Knightly never did action movies, mainly costume dramas and yes IMHO Emily Blunt is way hotter

    But who could forget the Knightly star turn in the forgettable movie about Domino Harvey? http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0421054/?ref_=nm_flmg_act_27

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  41. tbraton says:

    “It’s more like Stephen Soderbergh’s 2000 ensemble Mexican drug cartel movie Traffic, an intelligent, well-made film that, for better or worse, doesn’t haunt your nightmares like No Country.”

    I really liked “Traffic” when it came out. But then I then I read somewhere that it was an adaptation of a British-German (?) production, “Traffik,” which had appeared on British television, so I decided to rent the original. I was blown away. The original production (about 6 hours in all, apparently shown 1 hour each week) was based in Britain and Germany and the supplier countries were (surprise!) Afghanistan and Pakistan. Superior in every way. Having seen the original, it did make me question the Academy Award to the guy who wrote the screenplay for “Traffic.” All he had to do was compress 6 hours to two and change the locale from Britain-Germany-Afghanistan to the U.S.-Mexico. A lot got lost in translation imo.

    BTW I agree with you about Del Toro. He has been a favorite of mine since I first saw him play one of the off-beat criminals in one of my favorite movies, “The Usual Suspects.” His character spoke with an incomprehensible little mumble which caught my attention from the start and, which I learned later, was an actorly improvisation of Del Toro. Fine actor, as was the entire cast of “Usual Suspects,” especially Kevin Spacey. The basic premise of the movie did not make much sense when you later thought about it, but the movie was so well done that you didn’t think about it at the time and just accepted it.

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  42. gbloco says:
    @Whiskey
    Keira Knightly was in those awful Pirates movies, and that King Arthur movie. So she's done some action movies.

    Costume action movies!!!!

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  43. I saw this movie a few weeks ago, and my impressions largely align with yours. I did go into it with some trepidation, as I was concerned about the fact it starred Emily Blunt (or really, any woman), and was braced for a load of Feminist scolding. I was pleasantly surprised by the lack of that, and suspect that Feminists really don’t care for this film at all.

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  44. MarkinLA says:
    @emilio zapata
    There's seems to be an ascendancy of narcos in the media with Netflix's Narcos a success which will probably lead to more narco tv shows and Ridley Scott's next film is another cartel film.

    There are plenty of Latin American telenovelas about drug trafficking. If you have netflix you can see them. Some have over a hundred episodes so must come on more than once a week back in the countries they were made.

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    http://www.netflix.com/title/80033767

    This one is about a guy doing security for the Cali cartel when Escobar's Medellin cartel declared war on them. These series are actually pretty good but the number of episodes is too much. I stopped at episode 17.
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  45. @Lugash
    I saw this when it first hit theaters due to the Oscar buzz. It's good, but the audience is kept dark along with Blunt's character. You just have to role with it.

    A few plot points are a bit contrived. Why are there bodies in the walls and drug tunnels don't exit in the middle of the desert. For anyone familiar with the Arizona locations you know they're not the real places, but it captures the feel.

    I got the feeling that the film was hinting at real life events a la DoJ gun running.

    Steve, you should check out the indie file Blue Ruin.

    “Steve, you should check out the indie file Blue Ruin.”

    Yes, “Blue Ruin” is excellent.

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  46. @WGG
    Didn't like No Country For Old Men or McCarthy 's Viggo Mortensen vehicle Cannibal Causeway. Thought they both had the realism of at best Forrest Gump, but were in no way that self aware or entertaining.

    But then, Steve love love loves David Lynch who comes off to me like the ultimate hack. A less talented, less humble Terry Gilliam. Lynch is quite possibly a secret Juggalo who has a sexual fetish for Mondo Cane.

    You have bad taste.

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  47. @Scotty G. Vito
    No Country is overrated. The plot is like gossamer. The villain's dull. Josh Brolin groupies aside -- there is definitely one of them around here -- no one has ever offered an honest explanation of what's so compelling about the turgid recreation of a frankly boring novel. Btw anybody rent "The Artist" or "The King's Speech" in the last 24 months? Didn't think so

    You have bad taste, too.

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  48. MarkinLA says:
    @MarkinLA
    There are plenty of Latin American telenovelas about drug trafficking. If you have netflix you can see them. Some have over a hundred episodes so must come on more than once a week back in the countries they were made.

    http://www.netflix.com/title/80033767

    This one is about a guy doing security for the Cali cartel when Escobar’s Medellin cartel declared war on them. These series are actually pretty good but the number of episodes is too much. I stopped at episode 17.

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  49. Sunbeam says:
    @Steve Sailer
    There was a Mexican narco cartel show on NBC (?) in 2000. It didn't last long. Mexico doesn't much interest white Americans, other than Celtic Catholics like Cormac McCarthy, Vince Gilligan, and Mel Gibson.

    “Mexico doesn’t much interest white Americans, other than Celtic Catholics like Cormac McCarthy, Vince Gilligan, and Mel Gibson.”

    You might be right about this, not something I’ve spent a ton of time thinking about.

    But to me it seems like there are so many stories that happened in the America’s that would be fascinating subjects for movies or mini-series.

    Gibson’s Apocalyptico is an example of this kind of thing, though I understand most think he didn’t pull it off. (And reading the plot description for that movie makes you go WTF if you have even my cursory knowledge of the subject matter).

    But the Inca and their empire…

    Or the Aztecs. Montezuma was batshit crazy on a level Caligula or Nero couldn’t possibly imagine.

    Just saying you could get a heck of a miniseries or Game of Thrones type thing about the Aztecs. And the pedantist in me would insist on not a white face in the crowd (well unless they could plausibly play the role, no Wayne as Genghis Khan in my moviemaking).

    Well my tastes are probably not the same as most Americans. But I’d love to see an Aztec thing like Game of Thrones. And the blood factor would make Game look like Sesame Street. Guess we could work in boobs too.

    But nah. We get I, Claudius or something for the umpteenth time on PBS.

    “Elites” are pretty myopic. They don’t tend to notice just how committed they are to watching Brits play Romans, or imaginary fantasy world people, or whatever. But got to have that particular geographic grouping of accents.

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  50. tbraton says:
    @Steve Sailer
    "Interesting point about those Celtic Catholics. They’re also known for their depictions of violence, and traditional Catholic aesthetics has a lurid quality to it relative to the more plain and austere Protestant aesthetic."

    Right. The Passion of the Christ, for example, is very Baroque Counter-Reformation in look. It was massively popular with Mexican-Americans. Sicario's movie's director is French-Canadian, so he's likely Catholic in ethnicity too.

    My impression is that Protestant American artists were sort of interested in Mexico back when it a bohemian getaway: William Burroughs, James Michener, John Wayne (he converted to Catholicism late in life under the influence of all his Latin wives), and so forth. But when America loosened up in the 1960s, Mexico faded in appeal.

    American Jews have never seemed all that interested in Mexico at all. I'm not sure why. They are interested in many other things, but Mexico just doesn't appeal to them. (I think Cuba appealed more to American Jews, and when Cuba shut down under Castro, they couldn't get up much enthusiasm for Mexico as a substitute for Cuba.)

    As I recall, Puerto Vallarta on the west coast of Mexico became a popular hangout for Hollywood types starting in the 60′s, such as Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, John Huston, Jack Nicholson, Angelica Huston, after it became the setting for a movie starring Burton and directed by Huston.

    As far as the Jews’ preference for Cuba goes, obviously Mexico (as far as I know) lacks legalized gambling. I have a Jewish friend I have known for nearly 20 years, and she has mentioned that she traveled to Cuba a number of times with her parents pre-Castro. She was too young to be taken to the gambling casinos, but I am sure her parents partook. Even today, she has a taste for traveling to nearby locales that have casino gambling, something that has never interested me in the least. I restrict my gambling to the stock market. I also seem to recall that modern Hollywood was created by a small number of Jewish giants (Warner, Goldwyn, Mayer, etc.) who had a strong propensity for gambling. When I moved to Florida and became an active scuba diver, the guys at my dive shop used to dream of the day Cuba became open to Americans so they could go dive there. So tastes change. From all accounts, Cuba is an incredibly beautiful country.

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  51. Kirt says:
    @emilio zapata
    Anyone who wants to know more about the cartels in Mexico should read Don Winslow's two excellent novels, Power of the Dog and The Cartel. The Power of the Dog chronicles the rise of the cartels from the 70s and on through the 80s and 90s. The Cartel covers the cartel wars in the 2000s. As someone who has an interest in this subject, I can say that Don Winslow has done his research and did not embellished much in his novels as pretty much everything in the novels are based on actual incidents.

    Winslow’s books would make a great mini-series. I have only two reservations. He’s a bit too sympathetic to the sociopathic DEA agent and the character who is obviously based on “El Chapo” Guzman gets killed in the end. Of course, the real “El Chapo” got sprung from prison a second time and is still at large. Winslow missed the opportunity for another sequel.

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  52. @Lugash
    I saw this when it first hit theaters due to the Oscar buzz. It's good, but the audience is kept dark along with Blunt's character. You just have to role with it.

    A few plot points are a bit contrived. Why are there bodies in the walls and drug tunnels don't exit in the middle of the desert. For anyone familiar with the Arizona locations you know they're not the real places, but it captures the feel.

    I got the feeling that the film was hinting at real life events a la DoJ gun running.

    Steve, you should check out the indie file Blue Ruin.

    “I got the feeling that the film was hinting at real life events a la DoJ gun running. ”

    For me it was more than a feeling. I currently work as an epidemiologist studying substance abuse. Previously I worked in criminal justice and counter-terrorism policy. I like to keep up in all these areas. I later explained to others who saw the movie how it appears increasingly likely that the US DoJ, DHS, and other agencies actually did hatch a high level conspiracy with the Mexican government to support one cartel and make it the dominant player in order to reduce inter-cartel competition and violence. Part of this involved expediting this cartel’s shipments of drugs into the US. Of course it was only a coincidence that the chosen cartel had close associations with an ex Mexican president and his buddies, the Bushs. It was also only a coincidence that all the “Fast and Furious” firearms seem to have gone to this cartel.

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  53. @This Is Our Home
    Siccario was shot to look somewhat authentic, but it was ridiculous. This was very jarring for me.

    *plot spoilers (but of course..)

    I've probably forgotten most of these...

    1. The waif commanding the platoon which stormed the house was ridiculous.

    2. The platoon leader waif then clearing a room herself and by herself! This is terrible leadership and awful tactics.

    3. The dead bodies in the wall...why? The place was surrounded by desert.

    4. The fact that the other guys got the waif involved at all. They were running a very illegal show...couldn't they just have faked a signature?

    5. Convoying through the Mexican city and selecting the same route back as in....stupid.

    6. Not just using a helicopter to pick the guy up...insane.

    7. The idea that shooting dead twenty people in a traffic jam wouldn't make the news...hilarious. has the screenwriter never heard of twitter or mobile phone video cameras?

    The list can go on an on.

    I still liked the film sort of. The score and cinematography was good.

    The idea that shooting dead twenty people in a traffic jam wouldn’t make the news…hilarious. has the screenwriter never heard of twitter or mobile phone video cameras?

    Hilarious because more-or-less true. It’ll top the evening news that a Palestinian stabbed two Israelis in Jerusalem, but the narcos can assault a Mexican police station with automatic weapons and grenades and we will never hear about it. The National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers used to have a site, since discontinued, where they’d translate and run crime news from south of the border. Astonishing stuff that never made the American press.

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    Hilarious because more-or-less true. It’ll top the evening news that a Palestinian stabbed two Israelis in Jerusalem, but the narcos can assault a Mexican police station with automatic weapons and grenades and we will never hear about it. The National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers used to have a site, since discontinued, where they’d translate and run crime news from south of the border. Astonishing stuff that never made the American press.
     
    It was a in a queue of American cars on the American border surrounded by Americans and executed by American special forces.

    I appreciate that I didn't give this context and I appreciate your point about Americans being uninterested in the endless Mexican drug wars but I'm sure now you can see why I made my comment.
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  54. @Clyde

    However, one character that didn’t make much sense was Reggie, Kate’s best buddy on the police force . What was his purpose in the narrative?
     
    He is there as counterpoint to Kate and for marketing reasons, to draw in black moviegoers here and abroad. If I made Sicario Reggie would be in it. Whoever acted Reggie did a good job.

    If I made Sicario Reggie would be in it. Whoever acted Reggie did a good job.

    What struck me when I was watching the movie was that he didn’t look African American, he looked African. In fact, the actor, Daniel Kaluuya, is from England, the son of immigrants from Uganda.

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    In fact, the actor, Daniel Kaluuya, is from England, the son of immigrants from Uganda.
     
    If I were casting the movie I would want a black man who was really black like DK. To provide more contrast with his pale white English Emily Blunt law enforcement partner. It's more sexually intriguing and forbidden so more gears turn in the audience's heads. The two characters fought like a married couple.
    DK's blackness also makes him more unmistakably non-Mexican. More contrast there too.
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  55. @Chiron
    "Emily Blunt is cast as an FBI agent/waif who slowly figures out that she really doesn’t belong in a workplace full of ruthless men with large guns."

    What I heard is that from the big 4 intelligence agencies (CIA, FBI, DIA ,NSA) its the CIA that has more Liberals around.

    The CIA does a lot of recruiting at Ivy League schools, so it does make sense that they’d be more liberal than other intelligence agencies.

    I’ve always wondered what CIA pay is like. Since a lot of CIA funding comes from the “black budget”, I imagine their agents aren’t on the general schedule, for the most part.

    Most FBI agents are GS-13, plus a 25% overtime premium, which is pretty good.

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  56. Another American who was interested in Mexico was John Huston who lived in Puerto Vallarta for a time and his penultimate film was set in Mexico, Under the Volcano, and one also can’ forget about Treasure at Sierra Madre. Jack Kerouac, with his French Canadian roots, was also interested in Mexico as he made several trips into Mexico and wrote about it.

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  57. @gbloco
    Keira Knightly never did action movies, mainly costume dramas and yes IMHO Emily Blunt is way hotter

    Did you miss the Pirate movies?

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  58. Hunsdon says:
    @Reg Cæsar

    Get Carter, Bring Me Garcia’s Head, and Point Blank also have the unstoppable killer avenger as hero.

     

    "The Head of Alfredo Garcia" would make a nice edgy name for a Mexican restaurant, don't you think? Not sure what the sign should look like, though...

    “Good afternoon, you have reached Cabeza de Alfredo Garcia, may I take your reservation?”

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  59. WGG [AKA "World's Greatest Grandson"] says:
    @Steve Sailer
    "Interesting point about those Celtic Catholics. They’re also known for their depictions of violence, and traditional Catholic aesthetics has a lurid quality to it relative to the more plain and austere Protestant aesthetic."

    Right. The Passion of the Christ, for example, is very Baroque Counter-Reformation in look. It was massively popular with Mexican-Americans. Sicario's movie's director is French-Canadian, so he's likely Catholic in ethnicity too.

    My impression is that Protestant American artists were sort of interested in Mexico back when it a bohemian getaway: William Burroughs, James Michener, John Wayne (he converted to Catholicism late in life under the influence of all his Latin wives), and so forth. But when America loosened up in the 1960s, Mexico faded in appeal.

    American Jews have never seemed all that interested in Mexico at all. I'm not sure why. They are interested in many other things, but Mexico just doesn't appeal to them. (I think Cuba appealed more to American Jews, and when Cuba shut down under Castro, they couldn't get up much enthusiasm for Mexico as a substitute for Cuba.)

    American filmmakers were interested in Mexico when large, sweeping cinematography was in fashion. When 2/3 of the shot is blue sky and the other third is pristine scrubland, Mexico can appear beautiful. Close up shots of dusty towns, not so much. Also when it was still ok to cast Mexicans as villainous drunk savages, they made for well recognized antagonists in a given western.

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  60. Svigor says:

    I found NCFOM kind of silly. No, cops don’t use handcuffs with conveniently long chains so pudgy Mexicans can bring them around their dumpy midsections and then garrote people with them. On the contrary. And no, pear-shaped Mexicans can’t do that bring-the-cuffs-around-the-legs maneuver. Yes, all Brolin had to do is move quietly out of the direct line of fire of the hotel room door and then shoot the Mexican Terminator in the face when he walked in. No, rednecks don’t just stand there while strangers put unidentified, gun-like devices to their heads. Etc.

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    I found NCFOM kind of silly. No, cops don’t use handcuffs with conveniently long chains so pudgy Mexicans can bring them around their dumpy midsections and then garrote people with them. On the contrary. And no, pear-shaped Mexicans can’t do that bring-the-cuffs-around-the-legs maneuver. Yes, all Brolin had to do is move quietly out of the direct line of fire of the hotel room door and then shoot the Mexican Terminator in the face when he walked in.
     
    Javier Bardem isn't Mexican; he's a Spaniard*, which is unsurprising. Hollywood finds actual Mexicans pretty boring.

    Also, there's no indication in the film that Anton Chigurh is supposed to "read" as Mexican:

    His [Chigurh's] background and nationality are left undisclosed and largely open to speculation, although it is established that he speaks a foreign accent, his first name Anton is clearly Christian European (possibly Eastern) and his surname conjures similarities to Indian toponyms and common words such as the city of Chandigarh or the word "Gurh", which denotes a town in Madhya Pradesh as well as a well-known food product and the translation for "subtle" in different South Asian languages. Another possibility is that is a corruption of an Albanian or other ethnicity of the Balkans like the Roma, or of North African or Middle Eastern Christian ethnicity refugees in Europe or America, some of whom are known to often join criminal organizations in their new countries. When writer Cormac McCarthy visited the set, the actors inquired about Chigurh's background and the symbolic significance of his name. McCarthy simply replied "I just thought it was a cool name."
     
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anton_Chigurh


    *

    Bardem was born in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, in the Canary Islands, Spain. His mother, Pilar Bardem (born María del Pilar Bardem Muñoz), is an actress, and his father, José Carlos Encinas Doussinague (1931–1995), was a businessman involved in environmental work. The two separated shortly after his birth.[4][5] His mother raised him alone.[6] Bardem comes from a long line of filmmakers and actors dating back to the earliest days of Spanish cinema; he is a grandson of actors Rafael Bardem and Matilde Muñoz Sampedro, and nephew of screenwriter and director Juan Antonio Bardem.[7] Both his older brother and sister, Carlos and Mónica, are actors.
     
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Javier_Bardem
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  61. I think Sicario’s Denis Villeneuve was influenced by the Brazilian film Elite Squad as many have noticed the similarities in terms of direction.

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    I think Sicario’s Denis Villeneuve was influenced by the Brazilian film Elite Squad as many have noticed the similarities in terms of direction.
     
    "Elite Squad" ("Tropa de Elite" in Portuguese) is a fantastic movie, even though the sequel was disappointing. Wagner Moura (now in "Narcos") had a star-making turn in the film, and shows up now and then in Hollywood fare.

    A couple of BOPE guys I trained with told me that the movie was VERY realistic.
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  62. John says: • Website

    The scenes set in Mexico will make you want to vacation instead in, say, Denali National Park.

    Maybe that’s not far enough away: there is a Mexican consulate in Anchorage.

    If Big Steve is taking requests, I would like to see an article about the disposition of Mexican consulates in the U.S.A. Not about the ones very near the border; maybe not even about the outliers in places like Boise and Indianapolis; but about the ones practically side by side. Austin and San Antonio have consulates-general, only 80 miles apart. And I see the Bay Area has consular posts even closer together. What does it mean when an alien population is not only large but needs to see its diplomatic representatives fast?

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    This site says there are 46 Mexican consulates in the US. Who knew? Oregon, Idaho, Minnesota - you're covered.

    https://embassy-finder.com/mexico_in_usa

    It has room for comments, many of them anti-immigration.

    This site says 53.

    http://www.mexonline.com/consulate.htm
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  63. Anon7 says:

    I liked this movie a lot.

    * Minor spoilers.

    Emily Blunt’s character starts out as a model butt-kicking macha feminist role model, but her character is completely crushed by the end of the film, when her true role is made clear to her (and by extension, everyone with soft fuzzy feelings about immigration drug smuggling and playing by the rules, when the other side has no rule but winning).

    I wondered “what does the feminist press say about it?” So, I went to a site which gave glowing reviews to Edge of Tomorrow, in which she gives lessons on how to be a man to Tom Cruise, no less. So here’s what they say about Sicario and Blunt:

    For example, at one point, Blunt threw herself into a messy fight scene with actor Jon Bernthal, sacrificing relatively safe fight choreography for a more realistic brawl.

    “It was very, very physical, that fight. I remember, because I said to the stunt guy, ‘let’s make it messy, it’s gotta look real, it’s gotta look desperate,’ because she isn’t actually an action heroine, this character, she’s a female cop and the reality is she would be overpowered by a guy that size, that, that is the reality. She hasn’t got the perfect thing to say, or she can knock out any guy. She’s not that girl. It has to be desperate, like she’s fighting for her life. And so, with that comes a sort of messiness and a lack of choreography, so you’re met with a lot of bruises and soreness the next day,” Blunt told Indiewire.

    They said nothing at all about her role in the movie, concentrating on how hard she trained for the movie. BTW, in the scene described above, she is brutally beaten and nearly raped, completely dominated by this guy. But women win no matter what, in the feminist press narrative.

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    OT: I was thinking some more about the movie Edge of Tomorrow, in which Emily Blunt plays a military instructor. In the film, female differences in strength don't matter, because the military gives her a powerful exoskeleton that makes her the equal of any man.

    In light of recent events, in which the US military has decided that women can serve in any military role, including combat, it seems obvious that this movie agrees. Essentially, Edge of Tomorrow is female wish-fulfilment. Once women get the strong, male-equivalent body they've been longing for, confident, powerful feminist woman can finally pwn men for reals.

    I'd compare it to the earliest version of this idea. In his novel Starship Troopers, Robert Heinlein introduces the idea of powered armor, a military exoskeleton that can be worn like a suit. It uses feedback; as the wearer moves, the suit moves, with muscularity multiplied as needed.

    In his novel, men and women serve as equals in the military. But rather than writing it as a feminist screed, Heinlein uses his fictional technology to show that women can, in their own way, show courage in the face of danger. However, Heinlein makes clear the male qualities that are needed to win a battle or a war, and women don't have them, exoskeletons or not.
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  64. @gbloco
    Keira Knightly never did action movies, mainly costume dramas and yes IMHO Emily Blunt is way hotter

    Pirates of the Caribbean was a costume drama?

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  65. @Harry Baldwin
    The idea that shooting dead twenty people in a traffic jam wouldn’t make the news…hilarious. has the screenwriter never heard of twitter or mobile phone video cameras?

    Hilarious because more-or-less true. It'll top the evening news that a Palestinian stabbed two Israelis in Jerusalem, but the narcos can assault a Mexican police station with automatic weapons and grenades and we will never hear about it. The National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers used to have a site, since discontinued, where they'd translate and run crime news from south of the border. Astonishing stuff that never made the American press.

    Hilarious because more-or-less true. It’ll top the evening news that a Palestinian stabbed two Israelis in Jerusalem, but the narcos can assault a Mexican police station with automatic weapons and grenades and we will never hear about it. The National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers used to have a site, since discontinued, where they’d translate and run crime news from south of the border. Astonishing stuff that never made the American press.

    It was a in a queue of American cars on the American border surrounded by Americans and executed by American special forces.

    I appreciate that I didn’t give this context and I appreciate your point about Americans being uninterested in the endless Mexican drug wars but I’m sure now you can see why I made my comment.

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  66. syonredux says:
    @Svigor
    I found NCFOM kind of silly. No, cops don't use handcuffs with conveniently long chains so pudgy Mexicans can bring them around their dumpy midsections and then garrote people with them. On the contrary. And no, pear-shaped Mexicans can't do that bring-the-cuffs-around-the-legs maneuver. Yes, all Brolin had to do is move quietly out of the direct line of fire of the hotel room door and then shoot the Mexican Terminator in the face when he walked in. No, rednecks don't just stand there while strangers put unidentified, gun-like devices to their heads. Etc.

    I found NCFOM kind of silly. No, cops don’t use handcuffs with conveniently long chains so pudgy Mexicans can bring them around their dumpy midsections and then garrote people with them. On the contrary. And no, pear-shaped Mexicans can’t do that bring-the-cuffs-around-the-legs maneuver. Yes, all Brolin had to do is move quietly out of the direct line of fire of the hotel room door and then shoot the Mexican Terminator in the face when he walked in.

    Javier Bardem isn’t Mexican; he’s a Spaniard*, which is unsurprising. Hollywood finds actual Mexicans pretty boring.

    Also, there’s no indication in the film that Anton Chigurh is supposed to “read” as Mexican:

    His [Chigurh's] background and nationality are left undisclosed and largely open to speculation, although it is established that he speaks a foreign accent, his first name Anton is clearly Christian European (possibly Eastern) and his surname conjures similarities to Indian toponyms and common words such as the city of Chandigarh or the word “Gurh”, which denotes a town in Madhya Pradesh as well as a well-known food product and the translation for “subtle” in different South Asian languages. Another possibility is that is a corruption of an Albanian or other ethnicity of the Balkans like the Roma, or of North African or Middle Eastern Christian ethnicity refugees in Europe or America, some of whom are known to often join criminal organizations in their new countries. When writer Cormac McCarthy visited the set, the actors inquired about Chigurh’s background and the symbolic significance of his name. McCarthy simply replied “I just thought it was a cool name.”

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anton_Chigurh

    *

    Bardem was born in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, in the Canary Islands, Spain. His mother, Pilar Bardem (born María del Pilar Bardem Muñoz), is an actress, and his father, José Carlos Encinas Doussinague (1931–1995), was a businessman involved in environmental work. The two separated shortly after his birth.[4][5] His mother raised him alone.[6] Bardem comes from a long line of filmmakers and actors dating back to the earliest days of Spanish cinema; he is a grandson of actors Rafael Bardem and Matilde Muñoz Sampedro, and nephew of screenwriter and director Juan Antonio Bardem.[7] Both his older brother and sister, Carlos and Mónica, are actors.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Javier_Bardem

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  67. syonredux says:

    off-topic movie comment:

    In keeping with the temper of our times, another transgender biopic is coming out: The Danish Girl. I had no interest in seeing it, until I read Amy Nicholson’s* review:

    I’ve seen it twice and I still can’t figure out how Hooper feels about his characters. He and screenwriter Lucinda Coxon at first present this as a sort of horror story. At the start, Gerda and Einar are happy heterosexuals who hump like rabbits, the kind of couple that sickens their friends. One day, she begs him to pose for her in stockings and heels, and suddenly a woman, Lili, bursts from his heart like the monster from Alien, killing its host. To Gerda’s dismay, the two stop having sex and switch from lovers to girlfriends. We rarely see them kiss again. Hooper’s already sold us on their hot-blooded romance — the switch happens so fast we get whiplash. “We were playing a game!” says Gerda, and Lili’s emergence almost has the feel of one, like a planchette of lipstick accidentally awakened an Ouija.

    From things that I’ve read about women who are married to men who decide to “transition,” the horror story comparison seems pretty apt.

    At first, Einar can’t articulate his confusion. This was, after all, a time before today’s vocabulary existed, causing doctors, the villains of the film, to diagnose him with every disease from a cancerous growth to schizophrenia

    As compared to modern-day doctors, who go along with a patient’s desires and willingly prescribe female hormones and gladly lop-off penises…..

    There’s an electric moment when Lili attends her first party and blushes as the bachelors look her up and down [...] And then there’s Lili’s exaggerated, simpering body language, all head-ducking and languid caresses, which she learns studying a peep-show stripper — someone who is herself playacting a faux femininity for men.

    It’s hard to tell how much of The Danish Girl is an oversimplification — or, more interestingly, a rebuke of being “womanly.” Take Caitlyn Jenner, who irritated feminists by announcing herself with a lingerie shoot. Hadn’t NOW spent decades telling women they didn’t have to dress like Playboy Bunnies? The Danish Girl is being pitched as the story of a brave pioneer — it even uses those words in its concluding title cards — but I suspect Hooper is quietly cross-examining Lili’s quest. He surrounds her with cities full of bold, aggressive, loud, strong women, from Ulla the outrageous ballet dancer (Amber Heard) to the brusque fishmongers at the market, yet Lili herself acts more retrograde than every other female in the film. She quits art, obsesses over her weight, and dreams of being a housewife. “I want to be a woman, not a painter,” she sighs. Supportive Gerda finally snaps, “Well, some people have been known to do both.”

    Thoughtcrime concealed via pseudo- PC condemnation? I’ve long suspected that many feminists are actually quite annoyed by the “faux feminine” antics and posturings of M to F transgenders. They just can’t actually come right out and say it for fear of being “transphobic” (cf the PC response to Rose McGowan’s reaction to Bruce Jenner’s “Woman of the Year” acceptance speech).

    http://www.laweekly.com/film/eddie-redmayne-simplifies-womanhood-in-the-danish-girl-6314564

    *She’s made some interesting comments from time to time about the blond villain/blonde airhead trope in films. Being blonde herself, she’s not fond of it.

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  68. SFG says:
    @WGG
    Didn't like No Country For Old Men or McCarthy 's Viggo Mortensen vehicle Cannibal Causeway. Thought they both had the realism of at best Forrest Gump, but were in no way that self aware or entertaining.

    But then, Steve love love loves David Lynch who comes off to me like the ultimate hack. A less talented, less humble Terry Gilliam. Lynch is quite possibly a secret Juggalo who has a sexual fetish for Mondo Cane.

    Hey, I’m down with the clown, and I’m down for life, yo.

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  69. Anon7 says:
    @John

    The scenes set in Mexico will make you want to vacation instead in, say, Denali National Park.
     
    Maybe that's not far enough away: there is a Mexican consulate in Anchorage.

    If Big Steve is taking requests, I would like to see an article about the disposition of Mexican consulates in the U.S.A. Not about the ones very near the border; maybe not even about the outliers in places like Boise and Indianapolis; but about the ones practically side by side. Austin and San Antonio have consulates-general, only 80 miles apart. And I see the Bay Area has consular posts even closer together. What does it mean when an alien population is not only large but needs to see its diplomatic representatives fast?

    This site says there are 46 Mexican consulates in the US. Who knew? Oregon, Idaho, Minnesota – you’re covered.

    https://embassy-finder.com/mexico_in_usa

    It has room for comments, many of them anti-immigration.

    This site says 53.

    http://www.mexonline.com/consulate.htm

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  70. Anon says: • Disclaimer
    @Scotty G. Vito
    The Heartbreak Kid w/ Charles Grodin was a "frightening stalker movie?" After how many bong hits?

    “The Heartbreak Kid w/ Charles Grodin was a ‘frightening stalker movie?’ After how many bong hits?”

    Matter of boing, not bong. Ask Beavis.

    It’ s not horror-movie frightening, but it’s very disturbing. When I saw the movie long ago as a child on network TV, I found it mildly amusing. I didn’t even see it as a Jewish vs Wasp thing. Just some story about a guy who ditches a dumpy wife for a blonde. But once you get the ethnic angle on this, it gets a bit crazy.

    Sure, it’s a comedy and it’s pretty funny. But the passive/aggressive doggedness of the guy to get into the blonde shikse’s pants is as maniacal as Ethan Edward’s search for Debbie.
    There was something about the wasp vs ethnic thing in that era. GODFATHER II with Michael v the Wasp Senator. Michael did get the wasp Kay, but she turned out to be the killer in the family. Harold and Maude with wasp world vs Jewish maude, with Harold being saved by Maude’s anarchism. Love Story with its crusty wasp rich guy and Italian-American girl.

    The battle of the womb thing in THE SEARCHERS had special meaning to a lot of ethnic writers and directors who were trying to get into the pants of blonde shikses of rich Wasp fathers. As such, they both identified with Ethan and saw him as the enemy. Ethan, like Braddock in The Graduate, won’t give up. He’s gonna find Debbie. But he is also the white man trying to stop a white girl from being taken by a savage.

    Ethnic artists and directors would have identified with his obsessive drive but also been intimidated(and fascinated and offended by) his feeling of sexual exclusivity.
    Also, even as ethnic guys were angry with the Wasp sexual wall, they were mindful of keeping their own walls against blacks. It’s like Tommy in GOODFELLAS and ‘sammy davis jr’.

    There is some of this in EXORCIST too. A Nordic priest as father figure does battle to save a young white girl’s pooter from being invaded by some demonic figure unleashed in swarthy land of Arabs. The priest is like Ethan Edwards, the devil is like Scar. In Taxi Driver, things get complicated cuz Bickle is ethnically ambiguous. Is he Anglo or ethnic? He get rejected by Cybil Shepherd but tries to salvage something ‘pure’ from the world of filth. Ironically, she sees him as part of the filth.

    In some way, the Jewish searcher/seeker/hunter is more unsettling. Someone like Chigurh or Terminator is easy to understand. He is a fearsome killer that acts like a killer.
    But the Jewish character like Braddock and Grodin in Heartbreak Kid is passive/aggressive. Teddy Bear Cuddly on the outside but relentless like the voodoo doll in Trilogy of Terror.

    Because Heartbreak Kid is funny(and was handled with a warmer woman’s touch of Elaine May), it seems like a mild comedy. But it’s actually a very disturbed film that, minus the humor, would be pretty creepy.

    The father in it finally relents… but the father in FOUR FRIENDS is made of tougher stuff against the upstart ethnic:

    He goes totally Angel(Wild Bunch) on the couple.

    The reigning narrative says that ethnic or black men who go chasing after blonde white women are just spreading love and breaking down walls. And white fathers who oppose this stuff are ‘racists’ and ‘haters’ or ‘poets of hatred’.

    But HEARTBREAK RIDGE goes a bit further than such pat formulations. The Jewish guy rudely and insensitively dumps his own wife. His inter-ethnicism is itself a kind of exclusionism. He excludes Jewish women from his life in preference of the ‘shikse’.
    Even as he challenges the girl’s father, he effectively rejects his own Jewish world and enters the wasp world. He breaks prejudices but also revels in it because he is obviously convinced that wasp beauty is far superior to Jewish looks. Jewish women are no longer good enough for him, and he MUST get the blonde shikse to the exclusion of all other women.

    Read More
    • Replies: @syonredux

    There is some of this in EXORCIST too. A Nordic priest as father figure does battle to save a young white girl’s pooter from being invaded by some demonic figure unleashed in swarthy land of Arabs. The priest is like Ethan Edwards, the devil is like Scar.
     
    It becomes more ambiguous, though, when you recall that the demon Pazuzu has a grudge against Sydow's priest because he prevented him from possessing a Black kid in Africa. Plus, the girl is actually saved in the end by black-haired Greek priest.
    , @syonredux

    GODFATHER II with Michael v the Wasp Senator.
     
    Also Italian vs Irish (Michael's assassination of the corrupt Irish police captain in GODFATHER I) and Italian vs Jew (Michael vs Hyman Roth in GODFATHER II). There's an interesting vein of Italian triumphalism running through the first two films....
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  71. I dunno. I have read a couple of McCarthy’s books, and while they are well written, the “plots” don’t make a lot of sense. I liked the movie NCFOM, but there were a lot of wtf moments in it. It would have been much better if Diane Lane, Brolin’s then wife, had gotten naked which she does in most of her movies. Yowza!

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  72. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer
    @Chrisnonymous

    My impression is that Protestant American artists were sort of interested in Mexico back when it a bohemian getaway
     
    How do the Bush and Buckley family involvements fit in? Especially Buckley. The whole go to Texas, go to Connecticut thing with the father seemed weird, but WFB's Mexico stint never made sense to me. I always felt like there must be "another Mexico" that's hidden from me or passed from the earth 40-50 years ago.

    Buckley was Irish Catholic, and very religious.

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  73. @Clyde

    in many affluent areas and high-paying industries, the composition is more like 70% white and 30% Asian
     
    Partly due to Asian legal immigration being greater than Hispanic during the last ten years. Pew came out with this.

    In a Shift, Biggest Wave of Migrants Is Now Asian
    By Kirk Semple June 18, 2012
    Asians have surpassed Hispanics as the largest wave of new immigrants to the United States, pushing the population of Asian descent to a record 18.2 million and helping to make Asians the fastest-growing racial group in the country, according to a study released Tuesday by the Pew Research Center.
     

    Welcome to the East Asian co-prosperity sphere 2.0. Instead of rising crime and taxes you can look forward to surging house prices and crowded libraries. The role of whites in the EACS is to built houses and repair cars for middle class Asians who vacillate between running corner shops and working as white-collar professionals.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Clyde
    Thanks. It is only from your posts here and others from Australia and New Zealand, that I know how your two nations are quickly turning Asian via legal immigration. And I have been a close follower of immigration for years!

    My favorite story from your nations is the Chinese fellow who bought an Australian vineyard sight unseen for 38 million. Just to get his money/ill gotten gain out of China and beyond seizure. Of course he must be getting legal residency for him and his family along with this purchase? They can still live in China but when things turn bad he has an Australian bolt hole. Plus he can send his children to university in Australia to cement their immigration/legal residency.

    You guys are flooded with Chinese university students who all want to live there after graduation. Same in the US except that more will return home after their studies here. My take at least.
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  74. syonredux says:
    @Anon
    "The Heartbreak Kid w/ Charles Grodin was a 'frightening stalker movie?' After how many bong hits?"

    Matter of boing, not bong. Ask Beavis.

    It' s not horror-movie frightening, but it's very disturbing. When I saw the movie long ago as a child on network TV, I found it mildly amusing. I didn't even see it as a Jewish vs Wasp thing. Just some story about a guy who ditches a dumpy wife for a blonde. But once you get the ethnic angle on this, it gets a bit crazy.

    Sure, it's a comedy and it's pretty funny. But the passive/aggressive doggedness of the guy to get into the blonde shikse's pants is as maniacal as Ethan Edward's search for Debbie.
    There was something about the wasp vs ethnic thing in that era. GODFATHER II with Michael v the Wasp Senator. Michael did get the wasp Kay, but she turned out to be the killer in the family. Harold and Maude with wasp world vs Jewish maude, with Harold being saved by Maude's anarchism. Love Story with its crusty wasp rich guy and Italian-American girl.

    The battle of the womb thing in THE SEARCHERS had special meaning to a lot of ethnic writers and directors who were trying to get into the pants of blonde shikses of rich Wasp fathers. As such, they both identified with Ethan and saw him as the enemy. Ethan, like Braddock in The Graduate, won't give up. He's gonna find Debbie. But he is also the white man trying to stop a white girl from being taken by a savage.

    Ethnic artists and directors would have identified with his obsessive drive but also been intimidated(and fascinated and offended by) his feeling of sexual exclusivity.
    Also, even as ethnic guys were angry with the Wasp sexual wall, they were mindful of keeping their own walls against blacks. It's like Tommy in GOODFELLAS and 'sammy davis jr'.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GrkKL45qB0Q
    There is some of this in EXORCIST too. A Nordic priest as father figure does battle to save a young white girl's pooter from being invaded by some demonic figure unleashed in swarthy land of Arabs. The priest is like Ethan Edwards, the devil is like Scar. In Taxi Driver, things get complicated cuz Bickle is ethnically ambiguous. Is he Anglo or ethnic? He get rejected by Cybil Shepherd but tries to salvage something 'pure' from the world of filth. Ironically, she sees him as part of the filth.

    In some way, the Jewish searcher/seeker/hunter is more unsettling. Someone like Chigurh or Terminator is easy to understand. He is a fearsome killer that acts like a killer.
    But the Jewish character like Braddock and Grodin in Heartbreak Kid is passive/aggressive. Teddy Bear Cuddly on the outside but relentless like the voodoo doll in Trilogy of Terror.

    https://youtu.be/nra7OmV1IzE?t=11m10s

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sWJAnG8pLWg

    Because Heartbreak Kid is funny(and was handled with a warmer woman's touch of Elaine May), it seems like a mild comedy. But it's actually a very disturbed film that, minus the humor, would be pretty creepy.

    The father in it finally relents... but the father in FOUR FRIENDS is made of tougher stuff against the upstart ethnic:

    https://youtu.be/sSo9PTT5Rb0?t=1h7m1s

    He goes totally Angel(Wild Bunch) on the couple.

    The reigning narrative says that ethnic or black men who go chasing after blonde white women are just spreading love and breaking down walls. And white fathers who oppose this stuff are 'racists' and 'haters' or 'poets of hatred'.

    But HEARTBREAK RIDGE goes a bit further than such pat formulations. The Jewish guy rudely and insensitively dumps his own wife. His inter-ethnicism is itself a kind of exclusionism. He excludes Jewish women from his life in preference of the 'shikse'.
    Even as he challenges the girl's father, he effectively rejects his own Jewish world and enters the wasp world. He breaks prejudices but also revels in it because he is obviously convinced that wasp beauty is far superior to Jewish looks. Jewish women are no longer good enough for him, and he MUST get the blonde shikse to the exclusion of all other women.

    There is some of this in EXORCIST too. A Nordic priest as father figure does battle to save a young white girl’s pooter from being invaded by some demonic figure unleashed in swarthy land of Arabs. The priest is like Ethan Edwards, the devil is like Scar.

    It becomes more ambiguous, though, when you recall that the demon Pazuzu has a grudge against Sydow’s priest because he prevented him from possessing a Black kid in Africa. Plus, the girl is actually saved in the end by black-haired Greek priest.

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  75. syonredux says:
    @Anon
    "The Heartbreak Kid w/ Charles Grodin was a 'frightening stalker movie?' After how many bong hits?"

    Matter of boing, not bong. Ask Beavis.

    It' s not horror-movie frightening, but it's very disturbing. When I saw the movie long ago as a child on network TV, I found it mildly amusing. I didn't even see it as a Jewish vs Wasp thing. Just some story about a guy who ditches a dumpy wife for a blonde. But once you get the ethnic angle on this, it gets a bit crazy.

    Sure, it's a comedy and it's pretty funny. But the passive/aggressive doggedness of the guy to get into the blonde shikse's pants is as maniacal as Ethan Edward's search for Debbie.
    There was something about the wasp vs ethnic thing in that era. GODFATHER II with Michael v the Wasp Senator. Michael did get the wasp Kay, but she turned out to be the killer in the family. Harold and Maude with wasp world vs Jewish maude, with Harold being saved by Maude's anarchism. Love Story with its crusty wasp rich guy and Italian-American girl.

    The battle of the womb thing in THE SEARCHERS had special meaning to a lot of ethnic writers and directors who were trying to get into the pants of blonde shikses of rich Wasp fathers. As such, they both identified with Ethan and saw him as the enemy. Ethan, like Braddock in The Graduate, won't give up. He's gonna find Debbie. But he is also the white man trying to stop a white girl from being taken by a savage.

    Ethnic artists and directors would have identified with his obsessive drive but also been intimidated(and fascinated and offended by) his feeling of sexual exclusivity.
    Also, even as ethnic guys were angry with the Wasp sexual wall, they were mindful of keeping their own walls against blacks. It's like Tommy in GOODFELLAS and 'sammy davis jr'.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GrkKL45qB0Q
    There is some of this in EXORCIST too. A Nordic priest as father figure does battle to save a young white girl's pooter from being invaded by some demonic figure unleashed in swarthy land of Arabs. The priest is like Ethan Edwards, the devil is like Scar. In Taxi Driver, things get complicated cuz Bickle is ethnically ambiguous. Is he Anglo or ethnic? He get rejected by Cybil Shepherd but tries to salvage something 'pure' from the world of filth. Ironically, she sees him as part of the filth.

    In some way, the Jewish searcher/seeker/hunter is more unsettling. Someone like Chigurh or Terminator is easy to understand. He is a fearsome killer that acts like a killer.
    But the Jewish character like Braddock and Grodin in Heartbreak Kid is passive/aggressive. Teddy Bear Cuddly on the outside but relentless like the voodoo doll in Trilogy of Terror.

    https://youtu.be/nra7OmV1IzE?t=11m10s

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sWJAnG8pLWg

    Because Heartbreak Kid is funny(and was handled with a warmer woman's touch of Elaine May), it seems like a mild comedy. But it's actually a very disturbed film that, minus the humor, would be pretty creepy.

    The father in it finally relents... but the father in FOUR FRIENDS is made of tougher stuff against the upstart ethnic:

    https://youtu.be/sSo9PTT5Rb0?t=1h7m1s

    He goes totally Angel(Wild Bunch) on the couple.

    The reigning narrative says that ethnic or black men who go chasing after blonde white women are just spreading love and breaking down walls. And white fathers who oppose this stuff are 'racists' and 'haters' or 'poets of hatred'.

    But HEARTBREAK RIDGE goes a bit further than such pat formulations. The Jewish guy rudely and insensitively dumps his own wife. His inter-ethnicism is itself a kind of exclusionism. He excludes Jewish women from his life in preference of the 'shikse'.
    Even as he challenges the girl's father, he effectively rejects his own Jewish world and enters the wasp world. He breaks prejudices but also revels in it because he is obviously convinced that wasp beauty is far superior to Jewish looks. Jewish women are no longer good enough for him, and he MUST get the blonde shikse to the exclusion of all other women.

    GODFATHER II with Michael v the Wasp Senator.

    Also Italian vs Irish (Michael’s assassination of the corrupt Irish police captain in GODFATHER I) and Italian vs Jew (Michael vs Hyman Roth in GODFATHER II). There’s an interesting vein of Italian triumphalism running through the first two films….

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  76. Clyde says:
    @Harry Baldwin
    If I made Sicario Reggie would be in it. Whoever acted Reggie did a good job.

    What struck me when I was watching the movie was that he didn't look African American, he looked African. In fact, the actor, Daniel Kaluuya, is from England, the son of immigrants from Uganda.

    In fact, the actor, Daniel Kaluuya, is from England, the son of immigrants from Uganda.

    If I were casting the movie I would want a black man who was really black like DK. To provide more contrast with his pale white English Emily Blunt law enforcement partner. It’s more sexually intriguing and forbidden so more gears turn in the audience’s heads. The two characters fought like a married couple.
    DK’s blackness also makes him more unmistakably non-Mexican. More contrast there too.

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  77. Clyde says:
    @unpc downunder
    Welcome to the East Asian co-prosperity sphere 2.0. Instead of rising crime and taxes you can look forward to surging house prices and crowded libraries. The role of whites in the EACS is to built houses and repair cars for middle class Asians who vacillate between running corner shops and working as white-collar professionals.

    Thanks. It is only from your posts here and others from Australia and New Zealand, that I know how your two nations are quickly turning Asian via legal immigration. And I have been a close follower of immigration for years!

    My favorite story from your nations is the Chinese fellow who bought an Australian vineyard sight unseen for 38 million. Just to get his money/ill gotten gain out of China and beyond seizure. Of course he must be getting legal residency for him and his family along with this purchase? They can still live in China but when things turn bad he has an Australian bolt hole. Plus he can send his children to university in Australia to cement their immigration/legal residency.

    You guys are flooded with Chinese university students who all want to live there after graduation. Same in the US except that more will return home after their studies here. My take at least.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Twinkie

    You guys are flooded with Chinese university students who all want to live there after graduation. Same in the US except that more will return home after their studies here. My take at least.
     
    Chinese immigrants are, by far, the largest plurality among Asian immigrants in the U.S. as of now. Furthermore, since the PRC is increasingly our rival and competitor in the Asia-Pacific region, there are some significant issues with high rates of immigration from mainland China.

    However, the fastest growing Asian immigrant group in the U.S. is South Asians/Indians. They are flooding in (legally) in huge numbers to fill IT jobs in many metro areas.

    And more ominously, Chinese and Indians (along with Mexicans) are some of the most assimilation-resistant immigrants in terms of social and civic engagement.
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  78. Anon7 says:
    @Anon7
    I liked this movie a lot.

    * Minor spoilers.

    Emily Blunt's character starts out as a model butt-kicking macha feminist role model, but her character is completely crushed by the end of the film, when her true role is made clear to her (and by extension, everyone with soft fuzzy feelings about immigration drug smuggling and playing by the rules, when the other side has no rule but winning).

    I wondered "what does the feminist press say about it?" So, I went to a site which gave glowing reviews to Edge of Tomorrow, in which she gives lessons on how to be a man to Tom Cruise, no less. So here's what they say about Sicario and Blunt:

    For example, at one point, Blunt threw herself into a messy fight scene with actor Jon Bernthal, sacrificing relatively safe fight choreography for a more realistic brawl.

    "It was very, very physical, that fight. I remember, because I said to the stunt guy, 'let's make it messy, it's gotta look real, it's gotta look desperate,' because she isn't actually an action heroine, this character, she's a female cop and the reality is she would be overpowered by a guy that size, that, that is the reality. She hasn't got the perfect thing to say, or she can knock out any guy. She's not that girl. It has to be desperate, like she's fighting for her life. And so, with that comes a sort of messiness and a lack of choreography, so you're met with a lot of bruises and soreness the next day," Blunt told Indiewire.
     
    They said nothing at all about her role in the movie, concentrating on how hard she trained for the movie. BTW, in the scene described above, she is brutally beaten and nearly raped, completely dominated by this guy. But women win no matter what, in the feminist press narrative.

    OT: I was thinking some more about the movie Edge of Tomorrow, in which Emily Blunt plays a military instructor. In the film, female differences in strength don’t matter, because the military gives her a powerful exoskeleton that makes her the equal of any man.

    In light of recent events, in which the US military has decided that women can serve in any military role, including combat, it seems obvious that this movie agrees. Essentially, Edge of Tomorrow is female wish-fulfilment. Once women get the strong, male-equivalent body they’ve been longing for, confident, powerful feminist woman can finally pwn men for reals.

    I’d compare it to the earliest version of this idea. In his novel Starship Troopers, Robert Heinlein introduces the idea of powered armor, a military exoskeleton that can be worn like a suit. It uses feedback; as the wearer moves, the suit moves, with muscularity multiplied as needed.

    In his novel, men and women serve as equals in the military. But rather than writing it as a feminist screed, Heinlein uses his fictional technology to show that women can, in their own way, show courage in the face of danger. However, Heinlein makes clear the male qualities that are needed to win a battle or a war, and women don’t have them, exoskeletons or not.

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    • Replies: @Sean the Neon Caucasian
    If you've read it, could you imagine Joe Haldeman's Forever War being made today?
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  79. I watched Blue Ruin last night on the recommendation of some of iSteve’s posters and enjoyed it. It is on Netflix, and is very well done.

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  80. @Anon7
    OT: I was thinking some more about the movie Edge of Tomorrow, in which Emily Blunt plays a military instructor. In the film, female differences in strength don't matter, because the military gives her a powerful exoskeleton that makes her the equal of any man.

    In light of recent events, in which the US military has decided that women can serve in any military role, including combat, it seems obvious that this movie agrees. Essentially, Edge of Tomorrow is female wish-fulfilment. Once women get the strong, male-equivalent body they've been longing for, confident, powerful feminist woman can finally pwn men for reals.

    I'd compare it to the earliest version of this idea. In his novel Starship Troopers, Robert Heinlein introduces the idea of powered armor, a military exoskeleton that can be worn like a suit. It uses feedback; as the wearer moves, the suit moves, with muscularity multiplied as needed.

    In his novel, men and women serve as equals in the military. But rather than writing it as a feminist screed, Heinlein uses his fictional technology to show that women can, in their own way, show courage in the face of danger. However, Heinlein makes clear the male qualities that are needed to win a battle or a war, and women don't have them, exoskeletons or not.

    If you’ve read it, could you imagine Joe Haldeman’s Forever War being made today?

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  81. Twinkie says:
    @Clyde

    in many affluent areas and high-paying industries, the composition is more like 70% white and 30% Asian
     
    Partly due to Asian legal immigration being greater than Hispanic during the last ten years. Pew came out with this.

    In a Shift, Biggest Wave of Migrants Is Now Asian
    By Kirk Semple June 18, 2012
    Asians have surpassed Hispanics as the largest wave of new immigrants to the United States, pushing the population of Asian descent to a record 18.2 million and helping to make Asians the fastest-growing racial group in the country, according to a study released Tuesday by the Pew Research Center.
     

    Partly due to Asian legal immigration being greater than Hispanic during the last ten years. Pew came out with this.

    Old news.

    But even if Hispanic immigration greatly outnumbered Asian immigration again, Hispanics wouldn’t account for, say, 30% of the high value work force/affluent zip codes.

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  82. Twinkie says:
    @emilio zapata
    I think Sicario's Denis Villeneuve was influenced by the Brazilian film Elite Squad as many have noticed the similarities in terms of direction.

    I think Sicario’s Denis Villeneuve was influenced by the Brazilian film Elite Squad as many have noticed the similarities in terms of direction.

    “Elite Squad” (“Tropa de Elite” in Portuguese) is a fantastic movie, even though the sequel was disappointing. Wagner Moura (now in “Narcos”) had a star-making turn in the film, and shows up now and then in Hollywood fare.

    A couple of BOPE guys I trained with told me that the movie was VERY realistic.

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  83. Twinkie says:
    @Clyde
    Thanks. It is only from your posts here and others from Australia and New Zealand, that I know how your two nations are quickly turning Asian via legal immigration. And I have been a close follower of immigration for years!

    My favorite story from your nations is the Chinese fellow who bought an Australian vineyard sight unseen for 38 million. Just to get his money/ill gotten gain out of China and beyond seizure. Of course he must be getting legal residency for him and his family along with this purchase? They can still live in China but when things turn bad he has an Australian bolt hole. Plus he can send his children to university in Australia to cement their immigration/legal residency.

    You guys are flooded with Chinese university students who all want to live there after graduation. Same in the US except that more will return home after their studies here. My take at least.

    You guys are flooded with Chinese university students who all want to live there after graduation. Same in the US except that more will return home after their studies here. My take at least.

    Chinese immigrants are, by far, the largest plurality among Asian immigrants in the U.S. as of now. Furthermore, since the PRC is increasingly our rival and competitor in the Asia-Pacific region, there are some significant issues with high rates of immigration from mainland China.

    However, the fastest growing Asian immigrant group in the U.S. is South Asians/Indians. They are flooding in (legally) in huge numbers to fill IT jobs in many metro areas.

    And more ominously, Chinese and Indians (along with Mexicans) are some of the most assimilation-resistant immigrants in terms of social and civic engagement.

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  84. Well I’m not sure I appreciate the comparison Steve.
    Some people say I don’t even actually exist.

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  85. No $3 theaters here in the Peoples Republic. Can I wait for it on DVD or is this big screen must see?

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  86. Jefferson says:
    @Twinkie

    There was a Mexican narco cartel show on NBC (?) in 2000. It didn’t last long. Mexico doesn’t much interest white Americans
     
    There is also "Gang Related" from 2014, which did not renew after one season.

    It had Ramon Rodriguez and Jay Hernandez as main characters (also with Terry O'Quinn as the top cop and Cliff Curtis as the head of a Mexican-American crime family; Curtis has since moved on to "Fear the Walking Dead").

    It seems to me that in much of American mass media Asians and Hispanics are background noise at most. One often sees more black doctors (!) on TV than Asian ones. Meanwhile Hispanics nowadays seem to have replaced blacks as loyal, often lovable, sidekicks. Blacks now often play the main characters or significant, authoritative or otherwise highly intelligent characters such as doctors and scientists... or presidents.

    This skewed media portrayal is also the main reason why many foreigners still think that the U.S. racial composition is something like 70% white, 30% black and little else. In real life, on the contrary, in many affluent areas and high-paying industries, the composition is more like 70% white and 30% Asian while on the other side of the tracks, the downscale areas and manual laborers seem to be 70% Hispanic and 30% white.

    I live in a stereotypical super zip code, and there is hardly any black or Hispanic. There is a poorer area some distance off, and it is mostly Hispanic (they provide the manual labor force for my zip code along with some blue collar whites who are often the skilled tradesmen or foremen - the guys who can communicate with clients).

    “One often sees more black doctors (!) on TV than Asian ones.”

    On Grey’s Anatomy, like half of the doctors on the show are Black even though it is suppose to take place in Seattle where Blacks make up only 7 percent of the population. You would think it took place in Atlanta or Washington DC.

    Apparently Seattle attracts most of the country’s brightest triple digit IQ Blacks, hence their vast over representation in Seattle’s medical industry in the fictional world of Grey’s Anatomy.

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