Video: Hollywood and the War Machine – Full documentary

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Empire examines the symbiotic relationship between the movie industry and the military-industrial complex.


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War is hell, but for Hollywood it has been a Godsend, providing the perfect dramatic setting against which courageous heroes win the hearts and minds of the movie going public.

The Pentagon recognises the power of these celluloid dreams and encourages Hollywood to create heroic myths; to rewrite history to suit its own strategy and as a recruiting tool to provide a steady flow of willing young patriots for its wars.

What does Hollywood get out of this ‘deal with the devil’? Access to billions of dollars worth of military kit, from helicopters to aircraft carriers, enabling filmmakers to make bigger and more spectacular battle scenes, which in turn generate more box office revenue. Providing they accept the Pentagon’s advice, even toe the party line and show the US military in a positive light.

So is it a case of art imitating life, or a sinister force using art to influence life and death - and the public perception of both?

Empire examines Hollywood, the Pentagon, and war.

Joining us as guests: Oliver Stone, the eight times Academy Award-winning filmmaker; Michael Moore, the Academy Award-winning filmmaker; and Christopher Hedges, an author and the former Middle East bureau chief of the New York Times.

Our interviewees this week are: Phil Strub, US Department of Defense Film Liaison Unit; Julian Barnes, Pentagon correspondent, LA Times; David Robb, the author of  Operation Hollywood; Prof Klaus Dodds, the author of Screening Terror; Matthew Alford, the author of Reel Power; Prof Melani McAlister, the author of Culture, Media, and US Interests in the Middle East.

This episode of Empire can be seen from Wednesday, December 22 at the follwing times GMT: Wednesday: 1900; Thursday: 1400; Friday: 0300; Saturday: 1900.

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2 Comments »

  1. Abaddon December 28, 2010 at 10:09 pm - Reply

    It is fitting that Hollywood is in America, the biggest propaganda machine in the biggest, most warmongering country on the planet. No country has invaded more countries than the USA, or installed as many dictators as them. No country has through covert operations instigated war within nations or between nations as has America. It has rightly been called the great SATAN. Any reasonable thinking person just has to look at the recent history of America’s global conflicts, and its 170 bases around the world to see what it is at heart. A brutal dominating power using its military might to intimidate, threaten and invade those it feels are not willing to bend the knee to its global agenda. Hollywood has proven to be the perfect vehicle to present an image of America’s global interventions as benevolent, and that it is all being done in the name of freedom and democracy, and that EVERYBODY else is the bad guy.
    No one nation has killed as many different people from as many different nations as America has. Hollywood is as corrupt as the nation it represents, apart from the few, whose voices cry out in the wilderness, as has always been the case in human history, nevertheless the villains in power and their propaganda machines continue. They all have one consistency in common as history testifies to, they all end up the same, in ruins.

  2. Lucky Saint Luis December 28, 2010 at 10:07 pm - Reply

    This is morelikely an ancient human desease, specially of us gloriouse men not willing to understand that heroism is resolving conflicts without weapons and so it has been promoted soldiers since tribe chiefs start talking 350.000 years ago. I am agree that this stoneage attitude in full is explored by the political and social tendencies of misreable humanity and even the so called religiouse blocks killing in the name of their god established. In movies we are already fighting against aliens and space monsters and perceive the only adventures around the killing of somebody or defending from somebody . We know to whom serves this underlying managment of fear and heroe induction and I truly wish to be 25000 years ahead of this dump and truly self destructive pak called human civilization so easy to handle by those in love of perverted power games.

    Nature and universe got its own self destructive parts but never a meaningless killing so might it be that our self destructive tendency gets to an natural end if we read the signs well. Or what about this, all emotions like greed, aggressions, hate are linked to neuro viral behaviour according to biology sciene. Lets find the virus whom orders all dump, aggressive, power and money loving idiots to shoot themselves and we get to the next stage of evolution shortcutted. This might be the only way humanity and planet earth keep surviving and no innocent and good hearted being killed anymore.

    Deep in our hearts we already know that the next mayor world war is a MUST to all those not capable to stand tall against true evil human attitude. The White Illuminati cant handle nor stop it anymore.

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