For snobby liberal film critics, few match A.O. Scott of The New York Times. I remember giggling at this puff on PBS for a George Clooney message movie: "I liked 'Syriana.' I thought it was very hard to follow in a way that I found very engaging and bracing. I felt like the arguments it was making and the connections it was making were very interesting."
So it’s no shock that Scott would slam the new pro-life movie “Gimme Shelter” on Friday as “a crude, earnest parable that uses some of the techniques of indie filmmaking to deliver a culturally conservative message.” Then he slammed it as ideologically ferocious:
Liberal newspapers think alike. In Friday's Washington Post, film critic Michael O'Sullivan seconded the emotion of New York Times critic A.O. Scott that there were "tea party" elements in the new Russell Crowe version of "Robin Hood." O'Sullivan also lamented there was "precious little of the socialist stuff" that's usually associated with the Hood legend's rob-and-redistribute routine. O'Sullivan began:
Dark and polemic, Ridley Scott's "Robin Hood" is less about a band of merry men than a whole country of really angry ones. At times, it feels like a political attack ad paid for by the tea party movement, circa 1199. Set in an England that has been bankrupted by years of war in the Middle East -- in this case, the Crusades -- it's the story of a people who are being taxed to death by a corrupt government, under an upstart ruler who's running the country into the ground. It asks: What's a man of principle to do?
If you said, "Steal from the rich, and give to the poor," you must be thinking of the old Robin Hood. The correct answer here is: "Don't retreat, reload." There are more arrows flying every which way than you've ever seen -- through the face, the neck, the chest, the back. It's a pincushion of a movie.
The Washington Post's Weekend section on Friday included an interview with left-wing actor Ed Asner in advance of his appearance at nearby George Mason University playing William Jennings Bryan, "the infamous attacker of Darwinism and evolution." Or so says his Post interviewer, Michael O'Sullivan. Conservatives are killing America, Asner proclaimed:
"Our education has just gone into the toilet in this country," Asner says, before fulminating in a way that begins to sound a little bit like, well, a more liberal version of Bryan. "Having suffered, from the time of Reagan until now, with onslaughts against government daubing at improving the welfare of American citizens, and the education and health of American citizens, the anti-government forces have struck, perhaps, mortal blows to our society."