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Sunday, September 10, 2006

Initial "Path to 9/11" Observations

How in the world can anyone watch this drivel of a "docudrama" that ABC calls "The Path to 9/11" if there is no indication whatsoever to its viewers as to which parts actually occured and which parts are fabrications? There has been so much kicking and screaming about this film over its historical inaccuracies that are allegedly masquerading as facts - but I still think it's all much ado about nothing. It was very clear by five minutes in that this movie is heavily fictionionalized. Historical fiction perhaps, but fiction nonetheless. Let's just say, that had I missed ABC's CYA disclaimer informing us that the events in the film may not have occured exactly as portrayed, I still would have gotten the point, just by watching. The experience of watching feels no different than it does to watch any other movie made for viewer entertainment- except not as well-produced. Do the events in the film come off as somewhat plausible? Sure. So did the events in some other movies I've seen recently, such as Syriana. Do I see where the blurring of the fact/fiction line can be dangerous? Absolutely. But I also think that this poorly-made, boring, made-for-television production is not exactly going to be accepted as gospel by its viewers.

Just my 2 cents.

Update: Ok. I watched the whole first part and the previews for tomorrow's conclusion, and I decided. I hated it. It isn't about the skewed historical facts, it isn't about the clear anti-Democrat slant. It's about it just being plain cheap to make the tragedy that was 9/11 into a dramatized movie-of-the-week. This isn't the way I, or any other Americans who watched should have spent the fifth anniversary of the attacks. I'm sorry I did.

Big mistake. Huge.


Blogger The Town Crier said...

Americablog.com has had very detailed coverage of the give and take as well as on the specific scenes for several days now. it blows my mind how they can actually air things that never happened at all and misrepresent it to people as fact. the mere presumption that they had bin laden in the crosshairs and that sandy berger dropped the ball like a bufoon when they know it never happened.
Or the way they show the clinton monica scene, when we know it wasnt he who was preoccupied with it but the republican leadership who were obsessed with monica instead of the real work they had to do.

10:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good points. I felt the same way. The movie was just badly made.

10:49 PM  
Blogger happywithhislot said...

i enjoyed it,
I even missed the Wire to watch it.
figure ill catch that on wed.

11:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Path to 9/11" may be fiction, but you cannot re-write history - especially the long disturbing list of Islamic extremism that happened under Bill Clinton's tenure.

1:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This "docudrama" (great, is docudrama going to be the new reality tv?) is just another in a long series of the movie/tv machine trying to make money off the tragedy.

Please. Those two movies about 9/11? One with NICHOLAS CAGE?! The other fictionalized about the doomed United flight? It personally makes me sick, and I'm furious at everyone who went to see the movies in theaters.

It saddens me to see the lack of respect.

1:58 AM  
Blogger The Town Crier said...

But they did rewrite history! thats the problem, they completely invented things that never happened

8:50 AM  
Blogger The Town Crier said...

i spent most of the time rewatching the CBS fireman video documentary. after an while though i flipped to abc to see the sandy berger scene and the junk that followed. bah humbug

8:51 AM  
Blogger Charlie Hall said...

'How in the world can anyone watch this drivel'

You just gave me one additional justification for my having given up watching television at all.

Instead, my wife and I attended the wedding of a friend and had a wonderful time.

BTW, the real anniversary of the attack as far as we Jews are concerned is still five days away.

11:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Charlie, can you explain your last line? What are you referring to?

11:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

With all due respect to my esteemed 5-towns mother: (1) The movie never touched on 911 last night or got within a year of it occurring (so I disagree that they were cashing in on the 911 tragedy): Last night showed how the U.S. learned about the growing threat of Al Quida and how President Clinton decided that instead of sticking a bullet into Bin Laden he'd rather stick a cigar into Ms. Lewinsky; (2) If you are so anti-cashing in on 911, where is your blog against Fahrenheit 911; (3) The movie did discuss in great detail the 1993 bombing of the world trade center (you remember that one? That was when Clinton was in NJ but felt it wasn't worth it for him to come over the river to visit the bomb site); and (4) If you did not like the movie you could have shut if off (that's what I do when I see Ned Lamont on TV).

12:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

But they did rewrite history! thats the problem, they completely invented things that never happened

Get a grip. It's a TV show.

1:32 PM  
Anonymous holy Hyrax said...

This "docudrama" (great, is docudrama going to be the new reality tv?) is just another in a long series of the movie/tv machine trying to make money off the tragedy.

Oh stop. Have you ever seen a movie about Pearl Harbor, about the Holocaust, about Titanic. There have been many tragedies that have been made to film.

Frankly, I enjoyed the movie. I can see where naive people can believe that every piece of conversation is factual. But I believe most people are not that gullible. Some of the scenes where incredible to see, like the terrorist training ground. The point in the film I believe is to show where the main failures occured, and not really the small chatter in hallways.

1:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Oh stop. Have you ever seen a movie about Pearl Harbor, about the Holocaust, about Titanic. There have been many tragedies that have been made to film."

Pearl Harbor? No. The Holocaust? Sure. It was called "Genocide", and didn't star Tom Cruise as the feisty Jew who makes it. It's a particularly powerful film. And it was made as a movie with a message. Not as a "star of the week" vehicle.

Titanic? Sure. Star vehicle. The difference is that that movie wasn't made about five years after it happened. Big difference. For me, the day of 9/11 is still too raw to view on a movie screen. I can replay the entire news footage in my head just fine, thanks.

2:17 PM  
Anonymous holy Hyrax said...

For me, the day of 9/11 is still too raw to view on a movie screen. I can replay the entire news footage in my head just fine, thanks.

If you feel that it is too early, than I respect that. I guess our culture just moves at a faster pace now-a-days. I had no problem with the timing. I guess if it was a year after 911, than I would have problem.

2:34 PM  
Blogger Charlie Hall said...

'Charlie, can you explain your last line? What are you referring to?'

The World Trade Center was attacked on 23 Elul, 5761. Today is 18 Elul, 5766.

2:43 PM  
Blogger MUST Gum Addict said...

I think it's appalling that a defining moment in our history has to result in the need for comments like this, taken from American Airlines' website:

September 11, 2006

FORT WORTH, Texas -- American Airlines today issued the following statement regarding the ABC-TV program The Path to 9/11:

"The Disney/ABC television program, The Path to 9/11, which began airing last night, is inaccurate and irresponsible in its portrayal of the airport check-in events that occurred on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001.

"A factual description of those events can be found in the official government edition of the 9/11 Commission Report and supporting documents.

"This misrepresentation of facts dishonors the memory of innocent American Airlines employees and all those who lost their lives as a result of the tragic events of 9/11."

American Airlines is right. TV stations have lost all sense of what decency is.

1:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Was it old Billy Shakespeare who first said "methinks the lady doth protest too much"? Meaning -- those squealing the loudest must be trying to hide something.

The fact is that the 19 air pirates SOMEHOW got through whatever screening procedures American Airlines (and United Airlines) had in place and were able to sneak weapons through and successfully use them to kill airline personnel and comandeer those planes on 9/11. For any airline to insist otherwise, implying with hurt dignity that, in effect, "we did everything right and nothing wrong," is plain ludicrous.

It is equally ludicrous for top Democrats to fume about the film and insist that nothing of the sort depicted ever happened. SOMETHING must have happened.

The fact is that in the eight years of the Clinton administration, Osama bin Laden only got stronger, more arrogant and bolder, rather than weaker, escalating his attacks on this country, such as his bombing our embassies or the USS Cole (and the film didn't even mention the bin-Laden linked bombing of a USAF barracks in Saudi Arabia in which 19 Americans were murdered. It also never even mentioned his oft-quoted remark that he decided that we were just weak, scared paper tigers after seeing Bill Clinton's feeble response to the "Blackhawk Down" debacle in Mogadishu).

Now I know that some Democrats have their own revisionist version of history. In this alternate-reality universe, Bill Clinton and his team were always aware of the danger, were keenly focused, constantly trying really hard to get OBL, and they came -thisclose- and they would would have "brought him to justice," by golly, if only those unpatriotic Republicans hadn't bollixed everything up by impeaching Bill and distracting him.

Please. If they really were so focused and intent on getting bin Laden and stopping him, they had precious little to show for their eight years of supposedly intensely trying. The film paints a plausible picture that obsessive concern for "rules of engagement" drawn up by lawyers, bureaucrats, politicians and officials (so no one in authority could be blamed if things went wrong) undermined our efforts to get bin Laden and fight terrorism. Other historical accounts, such as White House military aide Col. Patterson's memoir "Dereliction of Duty" clearly show a Clinton White House that did not take the terrorist threat seriously or hold US military and intelligence agencies in a very high regard.

And to be fair, it wasn't just the Clintonians who dropped the ball. The new Bush administration was depicted as equally nonchalant and maddeningly too-casual about the terrorist threats, and the same "rules of engagement" mentality held sway. As the O'Neill character said to the Clarke character, "political correctness rules the day."

But while the Bushies clearly also dropped the ball, allowing OBL to complete his evil plan on 9/11 -- Condi Rice was made to look especially bad and Dick Cheney looked like a deer caught in the headlights -- we didn't hear of Bill Frist or Denny Hastert sending heavy-handed ominous letters to ABC with not-so-veiled warnings of retaliation against the licenses of their owned or affiliate stations, the way Harry Reid and Nanacy Pelosi did.

This Democratic censorship effort stands in stark contrast to what occurred several years ago when CBS produced a TV miniseries about Ronald and Nancy Reagan (starring as Reagan James Brolin, a/k/a Mr. Barbara Streisand, a clear sign that the fix was in for the Hollywood liberal community). The show contained blatant untruths, such as one invented scene where Reagan purportedly told Nancy that AIDS sufferers had gotten what they deserved and were being punished by G-d for disobeying His laws - something no one ever heard Ronald Reagan actually say, but which fits in with liberal mythology depicting Reagan as heartless and uncaring on the AIDS issue. When Republicans objected, then Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle waved the banner of artisticfreedom and accused the GOP of -- yep -- "censorship" and blasted CBS for "caving in" by moving the show to an less-watched cable network.

Now that the shoe is on the other foot, sauce for the goose, as they say, is sauce for the gander.

4:12 AM  

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