Written by Phillip J. Montalbano III
MOREOVER, do not read if you really liked the film in all respects; it’s just in my nature to nitpick.
a few of my friends have referred to this movie from a colonial perspective (referring only to colonies founded in the past few centuries by european nations) , but i think that this can be applied much more widely. to be clear, this is not a conservative or liberal rant, it’s just a rant about bizarre assumptions.
(for the sake of this note, people referred to as “natives” are the people indigenous to a given land and “foreigners” refer to the people invading them)
*the best way to get a native people to trust you is to act like them.
*if you really want them to trust you, you should perform a feat only a few of them have… which will be easy because of your innate foreign superiority.
*outdoing native people at their own culture is a really good way to get your native girlfriend to like you again.
*native people have a rich, nature-based spirituality *sigh* they do not know greed or pollution.
*in native societies, women have a place of spiritual leadership and men have a role of temporal leadership.
*if you need a native deity to respond, you have to have a foreigner pray to it.
*native people are consistently more attractive than foreign people.
*native people age very well; goes along with their attractiveness.
*native women will save the lives of their foreign lovers. over and over again.
*even if you’re being rescued by your fellow foreigners, it’s guaranteed to be the really attractive woman.
*if you’re going to be rescued by your fellow foreigners, they are guaranteed to be of another ethnicity (hispanic, south asian, etc)… why? because the europeans have the lead roles and need rescuing.
*it is possible to change your ethnicity if you really like a people.
*it’s okay to continue living on native land if you become a native person.
*natives will actually change some of their customs if you are really into their women.
*it is evil to try to steal resources that natives don’t know they have; it’s much nobler to steal the ones they are using like their knowledge, spirituality and natural energy sources. the only way to save them is by stealing these instead.
*when native people need leadership in the fight against foreigners, there is no one better to lead them than foreigners.
*the term race-traitor is an unacceptable insult for a foreigner helping natives; it might be okay for a native helping foreigners, we didn’t get that far.
*no one really listened after the making of “dances with wolves” and “the last samurai”
*edward said had no idea orientalism could be taken in any given direction, or to any given people, nor how much it is popularly admired.
*if you’re going to die fighting against impossible numbers, bring as many animals to die as possible.
*in order to truly enjoy a movie, you can’t think too much about it.
*some popcorn kernels are really sharp.
*despite all stereotypes, the rudest and loudest people in the theater are waspy-looking harvard grad students.
it was a good film in many respects, but i couldn’t let myself think about all this until afterward.
stick a fork in me; i’m done.
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