Monday, October 12, 2009


Thought of the Day

Inglourious Basterds has been presented to the world through the ministrations of the producer Harvey Weinstein. The success at this year’s Academy Awards of his 2008 release The Reader—a meta–Stanley Kramerish erotico-solemn tract, false in every particular (no illiterate Kate Winslet could possibly have “joined” the S.S.)—must have proved to Weinstein und Company that there is no business like Shoah business.
Inglourious Basterds has to be great because, if the boffo box-office figures are true, people love it. It’s therefore undemocratic to go calling it the antihuman dirty dream of a pretentious, vacuous clown primed with Hollywood gelt to do the Jews a favor by showing that they too, given the chance, coulda/woulda behaved like mindless monsters. What does it matter, after all this time, if the world gets sold the idea that what Shoshanna and the Basterds did to the Nazis was exactly what the Jews would have done to the Germans if Harvey had been around to greenlight the project?

Frederic Raphael


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