Films, Politics

Zeitgeist, The Movie

I watched Zeitgeist, The Movie the other day. Unusually for me, I had absolutely no idea what it was going to be about. That said, I quite enjoyed the suprise, though I’m not sure I can same the same about the content.

The film is broadly split into 3 parts:

  1. “The Greatest Story Ever Told” – criticising and debunking religion, particularly Christianity.
  2. “All the World’s a Stage” – 9/11 conspiracy theories.
  3. “Don’t Mind the Men Behind the Curtain” – proposing that America has only gone to war for profit.

The first part, according to Wikipedia:

“[It] questions religions as original god-given stories, arguing the Christian religion specifically is mainly derived from other religions, astronomical facts, astrological myths and traditions; in turn derived from or sharing elements with other ones”

Now, I’m not at all religious, but I am interested in religion: its history, its philosophies and so on. I felt that the films dealt with the issues of religion, particularly Christianity, very well. I certainly agree with one of its messages – that religion is unnecessary and untrue – but the film pushes another idea – that religion was created solely as a means of manipulation and control over people. I just wasn’t convinced: perhaps the Vatican and some such people do use religion in such a way, but there are many more religious leaders who have purer motives (although they’re just as wrong). Belief in God, in the distant past of ignorance, was entirely rational, and would have lead to the development of religions in worships of the being in charge of everything.

I also didn’t like the tone of the section: everything is a certainty in their eyes. There are no “could be”s or “maybe”s, only what they put across as facts: the Three Kings from the nativity story are three stars in a particular constellation, Jesus is the Sun. Technically, there’s nothing wrong with their language, however, in my opinion the tone was a bit too aggressive and definite. There’s nothing definite about thousands of years old history, stooped in myth.

The second part was a fucking disgrace. Watch this:

Yep, it’s the 9/11 bullshit conspiracy myths again. I’m sorry, but why can’t everyone just accept things for what they are? If you’ve seen “Loose Change”, as well as “Screw Loose Change”, you’ll know the arguments well:

  • It looks like a controlled demolition – it must have therefore been one.
  • People on the street said they heard explosions – therefore it must have been a controlled demolition.
  • No such buildings have ever collapsed from fire damage before – therefore it must have been a controlled demolition.
  • Other rubbish about the Pentagon attack and the crashed plane, perhaps they didn’t even happen.

I don’t think the 9/11 conspiracy people understand this: a real-life plane crashed into each tower. A fucking fully fuelled Boeing 767 (a big plane) crashed into a skyscraper at full speed, and you expect that the building will be fine? You don’t think that it can create explosions, loud noises, and damage? That can’t completely fuck up a building? OMFSM.

The huge amount of footage of the event just gives them even more ammunition. They search for any “anomalies” in the videos, as if they are somehow experts as to what plane crashes should look like, and how skyscrapers should collapse. Some see missiles coming from the planes just before impact. Some see explosions. Some see mystery planes. But none of them just see that, hey, hijackers took control of the planes and fucking rammed them into buildings, killing thousands.

No. It has to be the government. A government who had been in power for less than 9 months. A government who weren’t actually that evil at the point. Because, of course, governments are incredibly evil entities that are only interested in fucking with its citizens, manipulating them and, in the long run, profiting from them.

OK, I’m too tired to present a neat argument, so I’ll move onto this quotation from The Stranger, which I think sums this up very well:

“It’s fascinating, this structure. First the film destroys the idea of God, and then, through the lens of 9/11, it introduces a sort of new Bizarro God. Instead of an omnipotent, omniscient being who loves you and has inspired a variety of organized religions, there is an omnipotent, omniscient organization of ruthless beings who hate you and want to take your rights away, if not throw you in a work camp forever.”

Yes, they’ve rejected God, which is all well and good, as their intelligence tells them. However, they can’t accept that this is it. That this is all that there is to the world. No, there has to be something more. I can’t stand that type of thinking. It’s the same fanaticism that makes fundamentalist religious people so dangerous, and in my opinion it’s for the weak minded.

Initially, when thinking about conspiracies like the 9/11 theories, I thought that the reason might be that the Americans are so proud of their country that they can’t possibly believe that terrorists could be clever enough to actually pull off such an attack. However, that’s actually a shitty suggestion.

Now, however, I totally agree with this quotation. They’re just replacing God with the government as that ‘Higher’ thing. It’s hard to explain but you know what I mean. They just can’t be rest accept that.

Anyway. Whilst watching the films I twittered:

Watching Zeitgeist movies: not particularly compelling tbh”

To which I got some replies:

Zeitgeist: Addendum is the greatest piece of work this side of heaven. Exposes lots and people would be well served by watching”

[That’s fair enough, I don’t agree but it’s not that bad]

Changes in perspectives are sometime hard to accept especially when the truth has been branded a conspiracy theory”

Yep, I get condescendingly spoken to. Apparently I’m one of the sheeple, blindly accepting the governmental line. That’s not actually true: I like my reality served raw. I take it as it comes, and I don’t see it necessary to invent crazy conspiracy theories around a few strange happenings that happened on the most important day of the 21st century.

The third part is a more crap. I don’t remember its contents very much (I was quite tired), but it’s about Wars. According to the film, the US has only ever entered a war in order to profit (at least for the rich elite to profit). I think they may have even suggested that they let Pearl Harbour happen. Yeah.

All that aside, I’m glad I watched the film. It’s given me an insight into these conspiracists. However, I don’t know what to label them. I’m embarrassed, as a person who identifies with the left, to be lumped in with these people. I’m not one of them at all. I’ll have to look into it.

I know that this review has been a largely incoherent rant, but I am getting really angry about conspiracy theorists. Find another hobby. Aside from that, I do recommend that you watch this film. You might just not like it.

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