Redacted draws more fire

By The Politico.

O’Reilly isn’t the only one calling for filmgoers to bypass the picture. A website has been launched by a blogger known as “The Bashman,” and spirited opposition has come from other conservative blogs (Gathering of Eagles, Free Republic) as well as The Band of Mothers founder Beverly Perlson, radio host and Fox contributor Dennis Miller, movie agent turned documentarian Pat Dollard, Vets for Freedom executive director Pete Hegseth, and others.

According to Dollard, whose Iraq series “Young Americans” premieres on Showtime next April, pickets and other protests will take place outside of “Redacted” theaters beginning tonight.

But the real action will take place at upcoming Dallas Mavericks events, including a home game in Texas on November 30th and a Chicago game December 3rd.

“It’s all about punishment,” says Dollard, who saw the film and calls it “treasonous” for spotlighting “the most nefarious incident” in the Iraq war. “Mark Cuban is going to feel more pain because of this, and deservedly so.”

Of course, Dollard realizes he’s helping draw attention to a film that otherwise might have just died at the box-office. “We feel it’s better to make a statement, and not let it go unspoken,” he says.

I definitely have mixed feelings on drawing much attention to Redacted. It’s not the kind of film that most people will want to see, but on the other hand it’s crucial to drive home the fact that De Palma sensationalized the story to the point that it’s war porn and that the story itself is not at all representative of how our military behaves in Iraq. It’s the Baghdad Diarist on steroids, at least in terms of its storytelling. But factor in that most people around the world get their “history” from film and media nowadays and the need to counter films like Redacted and publicly criticize Mark Cuban and Brian De Palma for making such films is obvious. But go too far with the criticism and you run the risk of doing what the ADL did with The Passion of the Christ, and turn what otherwise probably would have been a flop into a hit. Hopefully that won’t happen in this case. But having gone to battle against Michael Moore a few years ago in my own small way, I certainly understand the drive to make sure that the Brian De Palmas and Mark Cubans of the world don’t get the last word.

Fortunately, they won’t, and Pat Dollard is one major reason why. The good news in all of that quoted above is that Dollard’s documentary series will finally see the light of day on Showtime. Pat embedded with Marines in Iraq, found himself in battles in the Triangle of Death, was wounded, and brought back a trove of footage. He recently told me that a couple of major moguls have signed on to back the project and that it will get its Showtime run. So there will be a counter to Redacted next spring.