What the headline said! We’ll give the Corner credit for the unrolling of this special feature — it’s posted #25 – #13 only as of this minute — which makes us wait patiently for the full list UNLESS we purchase a National Review subscription. In other words, they managed to make us consider seriously subscribing to the National Review for a full three seconds. Such teases! Well, whatever, let’s discuss the first half of this historic list.
The most recent entry happens to be the best:
# 13: The Best Conservative Movies of the Last 25 Years [Arthur Herman]
Braveheart (1995): Forget the travesty this soaring action film makes of the historical record. Braveheart raised its hero, medieval Scottish warrior William Wallace, to the level of myth and won five Oscars, including best director for Mel Gibson, who played Wallace as he led a spirited revolt against English tyranny. Braveheart taught that freedom is not just worth dying for, but also worth killing for, in defense of hearth and homeland. Six years later, amid the ruins of the Twin Towers, Gibson’s message resonated with a generation of American youth who signed up to fight terrorists, instead of inviting them to join a “constructive dialogue.” Liberals have never forgiven Gibson since.
— Arthur Herman is the author of How the Scots Invented the Modern World.
All completely accurate except for the last sentence there; the “Liberals” were more or less fine with Mel Gibson until a few years ago, when he encouraged church youth group leaders to take their masses of children to his Jesus movie — the most disturbingly violent (and just kinda flat, right?) film ever made. Also, it was around this time that Gibson became Adolf Eichmann.
As for the noble intellectual pursuit of determining where to place fictional action-driven blockbuster Braveheart on the modern American political spectrum, well, it’s obviously a very liberal movie, duh. Mel Gibson and his poor, kilt-clad buddies led an Uncivilised peasant’s revolt against their delightful English overlords. At best, this is Maoism.
But — and this can’t just be us — isn’t it a little too reminiscent of HMM THE INSURGENCY? In Iraq? And Gibson approves! If this were a “real American” conservative film, William Wallace would suspend his rebellion about two-thirds of the way through after accepting a monthly bribe stipend from English military leaders.
All of these entries are great, though. The Chronicles of Narnia entry is another extra special one. Does it mention “Kim Jong Il” within the first two sentences? Take a guess.