We need more “Dark Knight”s, less Citizens United.
SPOILERS for The Dark Knight Rises are ahead!!!
Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy films put out by groups like Citizens United. I am looking forward to seeing “2016: Obama’s America” but we’ve got to face it: those films are being marketed towards a conservative audience, they’re going to be seen almost exclusively by conservatives, and their content is pretty straight-fowardly conservative. We’re not making any converts with these films, and I don’t think that’s their goal, we’re merely equipping conservatives with facts so they can go and fight the good fight.
But we need films, television shows, books, and other forms of entertainment that argue conservative free-market principles in a way that is digestible to the general public and that is going to be seen beyond the 20% of the country that are true-believer, committed, conservatives (way more of the country than that are conservatives, that’s just my guestimate on how much of the country actually pays attention.) Above all else, we need entertainment with conservative principles that actually entertains audiences.
“The Dark Knight Rises” Christopher Nolan’s latest entry into the enduring Batman franchise tackles leftist memes head on. Selina Kyle, better known as Catwoman to general audiences, played spectacularly by Anne Hathaway, starts off as a light antagonist, someone who has stolen Bruce Wayne’s finger prints and given them to one of his business rivals. Toward the beginning of the film, Ms. Kyle let’s Wayne know that there’s a storm coming and that the rich better get ready because the days of living fat and happy are over. Through the film she goes through a beautiful evolution, realizing that those “fat cats” have families and that their quest for equality has put people out of their homes and taken lives. She teams up with Batman to stop the main antagonist in the film, Bane, who leads a marxist, left wing-style revolution.
Leftist critics, even those who enjoyed the film and gave it positive reviews have complained about the films politics, saying movements like Occupy would never drag people out of their homes. There’s one problem: Writer/Director Christopher Nolan and his brother Jonathan wrote this script a whole year before the Occupy movement started. Any parallels to the Occupy movement are mere coincidence and perhaps if the movement portrayed by the film irks left wing critics and immediately reminds them of Occupy, maybe it’s saying something about it that makes them uncomfortable? Team Nolan were inspired by the French Revolution, which was a pre-cursor to the modern left wing movements of the 20th century.
But the fact that the film forces people to think about the themes in the film and what’s happening is exactly what we need in the conservative movement. We need people who are comfortable with art, we need people who are comfortable with the mainstream. Andrew Breitbart once said that pop-culture is upstream from politics. The Dark Knight Rises is a gigantic leap in the right direction, we just need to keep plowing ahead.