Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Lord of War

Andrew Niccol is a filmmaker who has stood head and shoulders above the majority of his colleagues in one very significant way: he has used his ability and talent to gain influence in Hollywood to make films that criticize the US government for being the biggest criminal organization in the world, if not in history.

Lord of War, his 2005 masterpiece about the business of gunrunning -- whose superb cinematographer is the Iranian Amir Mokri -- is a philosophy for life, is an answer to the helplessness we all feel when we read the news every day: stop trying to beat the system, because it's unbeatable.

This powerful government, its allies, and the thousands of people who work for it and its undemocratic goals worldwide -- including gunrunners like the perfectly cast Nicolas Cage (nee Coppola -- remember? Francis Ford is his uncle) -- will never stop doing what it does best.

So what should we do with our lives, those of us who are horrified by the inhumanity of the world? The one thing we can do: be happy, so we can be humane.

Unhappy people do unfriendly things.

We can make a good life for ourselves so that maybe we'll have the means to help others and it doesn't even have to be in huge ways. Perhaps the most inhumane things that happen in the world are not the stuff of headlines, but the little things that we do and say each day to hurt each other -- those little big acts of unkindness that far outnumber the incidents of death and destruction we read in the news.

You see, the world does not have too much hate, it just has too little love. Too few people value love above everything else. And that's killing more people than guns are.

Labels: ,