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Howdy. We've moved from Cayce, but St. Elizabeth of South Rose Hill or Lizette de Waccamaw de Sud just don't do it for me.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Eerie timing

A couple of days ago, while looking at the paper, Izzy and I decided to go to the movies tonight to see Charlie Wilson's War. The main reason for picking today (Thursday, 12/27) is that I would be free of the pager.

So, already distressed by the assassination of Frmr Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto today, we headed off to see a movie that explains how the US came to arm the mujaheddin (unwittingly arming the future Taliban) , changing the future of the entire area, even as we finally helped someone defeat our perennial enemy, the Soviet Union. I cannot help but wonder if some of today's events were also set in motion back in the early 1980's, but also cannot imagine another way that things could have possibly worked out.

In eerie timing, the movie actually includes references to the death of Bhutto's father.

Overall, I'd recommend it. Direction by Mike Nichols, Aaron Sorkin screenplay & dialogue, convincing lead by Tom Hanks, good support from Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Julia Roberts, and nice jobs done by a couple of Barry Levinson regulars: Ned Beatty and Peter Gerety (I'm a big fan of Homicide: Life on the Street, as anyone who has been with me to Baltimore would recall.)

For those of a certain age, helicopter battle scenes don't seem right without a soundtrack, usually Wagner's Ride of the Valkyries. This movie did an interesting take, showing battle and attack scenes in Afghan villages and mountainsides played to Handel's "And He Shall Purify."

Lyrics, simplified:
And He shall purify the sons of Levi that they may offer unto the Lord an offering in righteousness. (from Malachi 3:3)

Watching these villagers defeat an enemy, clearing the way for "holy warriors" was all the more eerie with that oratorio playing over and over.

Nothing in movies happens by accident. It will be interesting to hear why that piece of music was chosen. Because, movie music choices have reasons. I don't think the rest of today can or will ever be adequately explained.

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