Finally, a conservative movie

"Finally, a conservative movie" Continued...

Issue: "UK: Two faiths collide," July 22, 2000

And the movie deserves its R rating, not just for the cannonballs knocking people's heads off, but for the intense agony of watching wives and children get killed.

Still, what makes the movie a triumph of a distinctly conservative approach to culture is that the final emotion viewers feel from the movie is inspiration, a sense of exaltation and gratitude for America, its heritage, and the lives that were laid down for its cause.

The Patriot was written by Robert Rodat and produced by Mark Gordon, the same pair responsible for Saving Private Ryan, whose celebration of D-Day heroism also touched primal patriotic chords. The director, ironically, was not an American at all, but the German filmmaker Roland Emmerich, who perhaps came without the political baggage of his American peers. "I started crying as I read the script," he said. "The American Revolution was a big subject taught in school in Germany because it was the first formation of a democratic society since the Greeks, so I had a real connection to the material." Sadly, the American Revolution is not a big subject in most American schools.

Perhaps The Patriot will spark a new interest in America's history and its ideals, both in schools and in the media. And maybe Hollywood will be inspired to make more movies that resonate with "disgruntled, home-schooling, SUV-buying, family-values working" Americans, the ordinary Christian folks who, despite being scorned by the current cultural elite, were the ones who founded this country in the first place.

Gene Edward Veith
Gene Edward Veith


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