My 2-Word Review of "Confederate States of America"

It sucks.

Okay, I can't limit myself to just those two words. But, seriously: I'm a Spike Lee fan, and I can't for the life of me figure out why he leant his name to this particular exercise in suckitude.

For those of you unfamiliar with the film, it's a "mockumentary" about what life would be like in these United States if the Confederates had won. Which could have been an interesting movie. Should have been an interesting movie. Except it was apparently made by third graders, because the nuanced and complicated conclusions reached by the film are:

1. We'd still have slaves.
2. People would say racist stuff in public.

How provocative! How tittilating!

I mean, even if we set aside for the moment the utter implausability that slavery, as an institution, would have survived the various social and economic upheavals that were inevitable in the 20th century, regardless of who won the War Between the States, the movie is just wrong-headed and idiotic about history.

Actually, I can sum up the movie's sucktacity with two examples:

1. Throughout the film, various governmental offices (the White House, Congress, etc.) are shown flying the Confederate flag. Only the flag they're flying is the infamous "Stars and Bars," which is not, in fact, the official Confederate flag, but the Confederate "battle flag," and thus not the flag most likely to be flown over the White House, Congress, etc. Perhaps this is a nitpicky point, but it's something that would have been uncovered with just a small amount of research into the Civil War, which, at least in my opinion, isn't too much to ask of filmmakers making a mockumentary about the Civil War.

2. In one of the film's fake commercials (think SNL skits, only less subtle, and less funny) a couple of down-home guys are working on their car in the garage, a car which looks exactly like the famous General Lee, complete with the good ol' Stars and Bars. But come on: if the Confederates had won the war, the General Lee wouldn't even be the General Lee, and the Stars and Bars would mean something completely different. The whole cache of the flag, of the Confederate image, has to do with the fact that they lost they fucking war. In a universe where the Confederates won, the General Lee would be called the General Grant, and the hood would be painted with a mural of Abraham Lincoln or Harriet Tubman. Or, hell, maybe the show wouldn't even exist, and instead it would be a show about two cartoon pigs in a van who drive around solving murders and sneaking slaves across the border to Canada. Who knows? The point is, all the conclusions reached by the filmmakers are just lazy and lame.

In summation:

a. This movie sucks.
b. You should not see this movie.
c. This movie sucks.

1 comment:

TMC said...

I can't wait to get that portrait of Harriet Tubman sprayed on the hood of my Honda Civic.