Thursday, September 14, 2006

Historically accurate? It's ONLY a MOVIE!

By Steve Lee

I'm really tired of people complaining about movies (NOT documentaries, mind you) that are not being absolutely and completely historically accurate. Events, periods, actions being portrayed in a film not exactly as they really were.

So what?

To me, movies are first and foremost ENTERTAINMENT. I want to be entertained. Distracted from the real world.

Granted, if a work of fiction is as historically accurate as possible, there will be less to distract someone. But if it's entertaining enough, has a good story, good characters... who cares? It's FICTION.

One of my wife's favorite movies is "A Knight's Tale" starring Heath Ledger. Historically accurate? No. Full of anachronisms and inaccuracies? Yes. Entertaining? Hell yeah!

We already have a fairly good idea of history, otherwise we wouldn't notice when something is historically inaccurate. I think it's entertaining to see alternate views of reality, what might have been, someone else's perspective of a real event. We only have a lopsided view of history anyway, as we have all heard that "history was written by the winner." So why struggle to make a film based on that if it doesn't make a good story? Because people might believe that's what really happened? It's only a MOVIE, people. Go make your own movie if you have a different vision.

If I'm watching a documentary, that's something else. I'll want the film makers to do their homework and provide me with enough correct information that I'll learn something about the topic. And if it's something I'm really interested in learning about, I might even do my own research to help form my own opinons.

If a film is more propaganda than documentary, that's fine too, as long as I know the difference. It's a bit obvious when a subject is being presented one-sided. But if you're able to objectively look at it as such, and you're smart enough to know there's another side to it, then hearing one person's view of something can be educational in its own way. You may not like it or agree with it, but if you can objectively listen, you may learn something. Just don't go telling me that your propaganda piece is a documentary. (I'm talking to you, Michael Moore. I DO like your work a lot, but "nonpartisan" is NOT a word that comes to mind while I'm watching.)

If you are striving for historical accuracy, go find a good documentary or read lots of history books and form your own opinion. If you want to be entertained, go watch a movie, pull the stick out of your butt, and enjoy yourself.


Blogger thomkat05 said...

I couldn't agree more! I love a good movie, all facts aside. I want to be entertained. If I want to learn, I will find a book.

11:49 PM, September 03, 2008  

Post a Comment

<< Home