Thursday, November 11, 2004

Movie Review: Fahrenhype 9/11 (2004)

A film by Alan Peterson

"Fahrenhype 9/11" is the Conservative Answer to Michael Moore's incredibly successful "Fahrenheit 9/11." Michael Moore's film heavily criticized the Bush administration for going to war in Iraq, and also linked ties between the Bush family, the Saudis, and even the Bin Laden family. Moore has been criticized in the past for playing a little bit loose with some of his facts, even though he has defended himself and claims to have worked with a team of lawyers to make sure that everything he states in his film is accurate. The makers of "Fahrenhype 9/11" question this accuracy and Moore's honesty. Referring to Moore's film, HYPE has a tagline of "You knew it was a you'll know why."

While not a line by line dissection of "Fahrenheit", HYPE does discuss some of the major points of Michael Moore's film. In particular, HYPE questions the validity of Moore's claims about the election recounts in Florida 2000, the ties between the Bush Family and the Bin Laden Family via the Carlyle Group, the supposed Afghan pipeline for oil, and the true reasons for going to war in Iraq. All of this is tied together in the shadow of the terrorist attacks of 9/11/01. The people who are interviewed for this film shows the slant/bias of HYPE: Ann Coulter (a very outspoken conservative commentator), Zell Miller (the firebrand Democratic Senator who spoke at the Republican National Convention), Dave Kopel (very anti-Michael Moore), the authors of "Michael Moore is a Big Fat Stupid White Man", actor Ron Silver, and Dick Morris. This is not to say that Michael Moore is without bias, because he clearly has one (or that any documentary is without bias, because they all are), but this is just to show the Conservative Bias of the HYPE. The arguments HYPE makes against "Fahrenheit" seem reasonable and well spoken, even from Coulter.

The problem with this film is the same problem Michael Moore faces. Each side claims to have backed up their work with facts and documents. Obviously, somebody is wrong. The problem is that being wrong can either be a flat out lie or being mistaken. But there can also be an honest interpretation of facts which go against what another side believes. HYPE is an important film to view as a counterpoint to "Fahrenheit". I can't say if it is any more or less factual than Michael Moore's film is, but it is less interesting and entertaining than "Fahrenheit 9/11". It may turn out that HYPE is more factual, and that it does, in fact, disprove much from "Fahrenheit", but HYPE is amuch less compelling FILM than "Fahrenheit."

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