Archives for posts with tag: The Rock

Legend of Hercules

Read Karl Radl’s review of Kellan Lutz in The Legend of Hercules (2014) at Semitic Controversies.

Related:

Read Rainer Chlodwig von Kook’s review of the Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson version of Hercules (2014) at Ideological Content Analysis.

Read Rainer Chlodwig von Kook’s review of Kellan Lutz in Java Heat (2013) at Ideological Content Analysis.

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Hercules poster

Rush Hour franchise director, Zionist zealot, member of the Board of Trustees of the Simon Wiesenthal Center and Museum of Tolerance, and “lecherous lothario” Brett Ratner strikes again with a pedestrian sword-and-CGI epic in Hercules, starring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson in the title role. Johnson’s part-negroid Polynesian features might seem at first glance to be an odd choice for the hero of Greek antiquity; but if any actor today has the combined physique and charisma to play Hercules, it is probably “The Rock”. The script and execution, unfortunately, are unconvincing, and opt for mindless, underachieving spectacle and bloodshed rather than the elemental masculine archetype creation of, for instance, Conan the Barbarian (1982). As for ancient neoconservative bloodbaths, 300 (2006) is a more entertaining example of this subgenre.

3.5 stars. Ideological Content Analysis indicates that Hercules is:

9. Pro-family. “I only want to be a husband and a father.”

8. Pro-drug. Amphiaraus (Ian McShane) makes use of psychedelic “herbs” for oracular purposes.

7. Talmudic, attempting to milk inappropriate cutesy humor from a young boy’s naïve use of the word “bondage”.

6. Pro-immigration, drumming up sympathy for the plight of “refugees”.

5. Feminist, promoting women in the military in the person of accomplished archer Atalanta (Ingrid Bolso Berdal).

4. Neoconservative. An enemy army of brainwashed savages wields crescent-shaped weapons that may be intended as an allusion to Islam.

3. Anti-white. The blond King Eurystheus (Joseph Fiennes) betrays Hercules. His throne appears to be decorated with a Greek meander motif like that used by Golden Dawn.

2. Pro-war. Despite revealing war to be motivated by mendacious behind-the-scenes machinations, Hercules delights in nothing more than the sight of barbarians mutilating each other like cattle. The hero even travels with his own personal propagandist, Iolaus (Reece Ritchie), who, like America’s Psywar Division during World War 2, spins glorious falsehoods in celebration of his mass-murdering master. “Are you only the legend, or are you the truth behind the legend?” asks Amphiaraus. A tension is maintained throughout the film as to where the truth begins and the propaganda ends. Ultimately, of course, Hercules demonstrates that he is the vaunted figure of myth. Tydeus (Aksel Hennie) represents the perfect soldier: a feral, unthinkingly loyal brute and killing machine.

1. Jewish supremacist. Hercules is the Jews as they like to imagine themselves, Zionist power symbolically flexing its muscles for the camera to entertain and indoctrinate the gullible goyim. The bastard son of Zeus, he wields power inherited from the Divine and so can be said to be one of the Chosen. Among his labors and feats of chutzpah is the slaughter of a mighty lion – Britain – whose pelt he wears as a trophy signifying the Rothschild imperium’s subversion of the British Empire. Haunted by Bergen-Belsen-ish visions of piled corpses, Hercules is also the subject of a blood libel and is accused as a “child killer”. Just as Jews have succeeded in blaming the Nazis for their own crimes, however, Hercules pins the blame on evil wolves for the child murders in question. In other reversals of tradition, Jewish Hercules is said to have slain rather than established a hydra, and is actually shown saving a prophet from being pierced by a spear rather than being the traitorous cause of this torture. Finally, Hercules pulls a Samson, bringing a temple down on the heads of his enemies.

Michael Bay is a filmmaker famous for his slick style-over-substance approach to the medium, and in Pain and Gain, a vibrant, blackly humorous meditation on the American dream by way of an injection of style steroids gouged straight into the audience’s eyeballs, the Bay formula pays entertainment dividends.  Mark Wahlberg plays Danny Lugo, an ambitious bodybuilder with an unhealthy fixation on self-improvement.  He claims to approve of the meritocracy that has made America great, but unfortunately finds exemplars of Americanism in figures like Michael Corleone and Tony Montana.  Consequently, he sees crime and not legitimate business success as the most promising road to riches, and recruits fellow bodybuilders Paul (Dwayne Johnson) and Adrian (Anthony Mackie) to kidnap oily Schlotzky’s proprietor Victor Kershaw (Monk‘s Tony Shalhoub) in the hope of getting him to sign over to them his home and all of his possessions.

Mark Wahlberg is intense as musclebound loser Danny Lugo, and Dwayne Johnson, who demonstrated a knack for comedy even as a professional wrestler, here delivers a hilarious performance to rival Arnold Schwarzenegger’s versatility as an action hero equally adept at goofiness.  As with much of Tarantino’s work, Bay’s film constantly runs the dangerous risk of glorifying or trivializing its subject matter by making its criminals such funny and charismatic characters.  The misadventures of Wahlberg and company are so exciting, fun, and involving that someone could almost forget that these likable bunglers, for all their charm, are really just murderers and thieves.  In the end, however, those who do wrong are punished in this grotesque and shockingly true crime story based on events that occurred in Miami in the mid-90s.  The use of period-faithful tunes from C+C Music Factory, Bon Jovi, and Coolio give an added nostalgic kick to this punchy, pleasantly gross, and perfectly edited dark comedy.

4.5 of 5 stars.  Ideological Content Analysis indicates that Pain and Gain is:

11. Anti-gay.  Paul, seeing a warehouse full of gay sex toys, expresses discomfort with “homo stuff”.  He deals viciously with a gay come-on (see no. 4).  Danny makes a pejorative reference to “pickle-licking”.

10. Arguably anti-Semitic.  The oily, irascible Kershaw’s Star of David pendant hangs conspicuously as he prattles and makes a sleazy annoyance of himself at the gym.

9. Gun-ambivalent.  Men with criminal records have no difficulty buying weapons from an effeminate and masochistic gun dealer (and Stryper fan) who enjoys being stunned with a taser.  A Confederate flag hanging in his store is probably intended for this film’s purposes to associate gun ownership not with liberty, but with racism.  A woman attempts unsuccessfully to defend herself in her home with a gun.

8. Obesity-ambivalent.  As in Pitch Perfect, Rebel Wilson plays the shameless tubby sexpot.  Other tubs of lard are featured in the film strictly for gross-out humor and audience derision, however.

7. Misogynistic.  Apart from one character, women are in the main represented in Pain and Gain as sluts and slobs.

6. State-skeptical.  Miami police are at first uninterested in investigating Kershaw’s story of how he was kidnapped and dispossessed, citing his Colombian origins as cause for skepticism.  They later admit their mistake.

5. Anti-drug.  Steroids render Adrian impotent.  Paul blows his cut of the loot on cocaine and starts to lose what limited wits he has.

4. Anti-Christian.  Paul’s religious beliefs, which vie with his cocaine problem for possession of his soul, make him susceptible to manipulation.  His professions of Christian devotion constantly clash with his criminal projects and outbursts of violent temper.  Furthermore, the judgmental attitude he derives from his faith finds expression in his belief that he might cure Kershaw of his Judaism.  A homosexual Catholic priest compliments Paul’s physique and tries to put the moves on him.

3. Pro-slut/pro-miscegenation/anti-racist (i.e., pro-yawn).  Adrian, a black man, marries Robin (Wilson), a fat white woman, who recounts at their wedding how her racist grandfather had warned her against black men.  (Ironically, the grandfather’s advice proves to have been valid at least in Adrian’s case.)  Nasty interracial dancing disgraces the screen.  Kershaw, half Colombian and half Jewish, likes Cuban women.

2. Immigration-ambivalent.  Victor Kershaw is the old type of coarse but fiercely entrepreneurial immigrant who through his own talent and efforts has become wealthy.  Two Slav women are depicted as oversexed ditzes.  The fact that one of these entered the country illegally through Mexico highlights America’s border insecurity.

1. Capitalist.  The unsung protagonist of Pain and Gain is Kershaw, the self-made man who, while less handsome and likable than his victimizers, is in the right in seeking lawful revenge against Lugo and his collaborators.  Lugo believes in the American dream and understands that meritocracy plays a role in this; but like others who would redistribute wealth, he is motivated by envy and spite.  This derives from his mistaken notion that all people are equal at birth, the implication of which belief for his type of mentality is that unequal distribution of wealth must be some kind of injustice if two people’s apparently equal origins and efforts result in inconveniently unequal outcomes.  Ed Harris represents the private sector positively as a private investigator who comes to Kershaw’s aid when police fail to act on his client’s allegations.

[UPDATE (8/14/13): A Christian YouTuber offers his disapproving observations on Pain and Gain‘s detrimental cultural significance here.]

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