Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Sony drops the bomb: 'The Interview'

Sony drops the bomb: ‘The Interview’

So, I really wanted to see the upcoming Seth Rogan movie ‘The interview’ in theaters sometime after Christmas. Would you believe my dismay upon finding out the movie was pulled and/or postponed due to hacked emails and bombastic threats coming from a hacker group? Can you fathom my sheer agitation upon finding out that Sony thought it would be a good idea to allow the stuffed shirts in the theater biz to start conforming to terrorist demands threatening moviegoers in retribution for its release, and that these fat-cats decided yanking the flick was an acceptable course of action? Simply appalling!

Back in November, thousands of emails were hacked and subsequently leaked by a group calling itself ‘Guardians of Peace'. Ironic name for a terrorist org!  This group, believed to be affiliated with the DPRK, apparently pulled this stunt as retribution for Sony’s upcoming release of ‘The Interview’ since the plot deals exclusively with the assassination of their ‘Dear leader’. This group then proverbially crapped itself by releasing warnings stating that ‘The world will be full of fear’ and then proceeding to wave the boogeyman of 9/11 over our collective heads, warning people to stay away from  theaters showing the film despite there being no credible evidence of an upcoming attack by our intelligence agencies and homeland security.

This just goes to show how pussified we have become as a society that we allow ourselves to be swayed by fear and terrorist threats issued by the gutless agents of a rogue nation.  Shame on the major theaters (Regal Cinemas, AMC Entertainment and Cinemark Theatre) for their cowardice and for the smaller chains in following suit like dominoes, excusing the postponement of this film under the guise of ‘public safety’ .This is exactly the kind of meek sensitivity and apologetic political correctness that is fraying at the fabric of our American society.  I find it audacious how Sony has responded to this threat, and stooped so low. Sony knew the consequences this film would have, and I highly suspect this coordinated turn of events was staged to drum-up hype and increase revenue for a comedy whose production budget was (holds up pinky finger to corner of mouth) 44 MILLION dollars. That is a lot of dough for a comedy. It’s as though the DPRK’s propaganda films about destroying America and turning Washington D.C into a crater are any worse than a Hollywood comedy.  The fact that the major theaters have been swayed by this double standard only enforces the position of DPRK loyalists, who will view this as a triumph and a great victory in their eyes. This therefore sets a precedent by enemy regimes: Hack, threaten, instill fear! Surely we will get Americans to shut the hell up and give in to our demands if we scream loud enough! 9/11! Fear!

Now, consider that there is a deeper political and/or corporate motive behind Sony having the plug pulled on this movie’s release that is not being publicly stated: The two main actors in the movie are journalists that are employed by the CIA to assassinate Kim Jung Un.  While it is true that any western Journalists who manage to enter the DPRK already face immense skepticism, many argue that this movie will only increase the paranoia and mistrust of future journalists and political negotiations.

I say screw them.

Did the USA kowtow to Adolph Hitler during WW2? No, Walt Disney made a parody with Donald Duck depicting him as a lunatic buffoon and told him to shove a missile straight up his Austrian kiester. 

Maybe Seth Rogan and James Franco will make a straight to DVD follow up film based on actual events about how Kim Jung Un murdered his uncle? That'd be grand! 

Even if there is a political and financial motive behind the scenes of this debacle, even if Sony is somehow encouraging pulling and postponing the film to increase audience demand to see it in a bid to make up for the losses suffered in the hack remains to be seen. Although this seems very suspicious, it doesn’t make much financial sense at all for Sony Corp, since they would surely be facing tens of millions of dollars in penalties, lost marketing costs, lawyers fees, et al. All for, what, increasing public hype for Amurricans to see a Seth Rogan flick? Costs of the breach are already being estimated between 150-300 million dollars. It could very well be that Sony's postponement is just making the best of a bad situation. The film is going to get spread one way or the other now that it has a political stigma attached to it, and I feel this is exactly what Sony wanted.

Personally, I wanted to see the movie before this drama unfolded. Would it be a crappy comedy? Sure, probably, thought I, however cliche it might be.I liked the premise and the dark humor. People are talking (and writing) about it now that there is hype surrounding the film.The fact remains that this fiasco bears a testament to how radicalized the DPRK is, and that Sony (and the theater corps) are responsible for putting a dent in American bravado, somehow suggesting that we are at fault in this idealistic clash of nations and cultures for having the nerve to parody a tyrant who has killed millions of his own people while engorging himself on Swiss cheese. We are combating a rogue regime with comedy, and it is no less debasing than Matt and Trey Parker releasing ‘Team America: world police” back in 2004.

How times have changed.

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