Monday, March 12, 2012

Pondering those social issues in Game Change…


Gawd, I loathe the Monday after daylight savings time spring forwardness.

Wince.

Shall we?

Last night I watched Game Change and…okay, Julianne Moore does an amazing Palin and it was beyond interesting to speculate about how much of the dish was real versus amplified for public consumption…but, well…I couldn’t stop thinking about the role social issues played in the film.

I’m not going to toss out a spoiler alert because we all survived this shit in 2008.

Game Change was about the behind the scenes lead up to Palin’s selection as the GOP’s candidate for VP next to McCain…and about how the campaign was more interested in shaking shit up than finding a fully vetting person qualified to be a heart beat away from the presidency.

I watched and squirmed at scenes depicting a campaign staffer watching YouTube clips of women…cause they decided finding a woman would help McCain reestablish his maverick brand.

And then they chose Palin…rushed the vetting process…and blah, blah, blah, followed by more shit we already know.

The thing that seemed revealing in the film was that several women were passed over because they were pro-choice but Palin got the nod because she was ardently opposed to unrestricted access to reproductive health care.

The director showed this in two distinctive scenes – one where the campaign staffer was eliminating prospects because they were pro-choice and another where Palin answers questions about where she stands on key issues in contrast McCain.

As the film goes forward the residue to those two scenes remains…through Palin’s initial success in accepting the nomination to her media fuck ups and finally to her determination that she could build a powerful brand off of the folksy script her handlers gave her as a lifeline when it became apparent that multiple crash courses in all the shit she didn’t know (and we’re talking a lot of shit) were overwhelming her.

Yep, those two scenes lingered…and I found it odd that the director chose to separate Palin’s views on social issues like abortion from her complete lack of understanding over what the Fed does or why Bush took the nation to war with Afghanistan.

Throughout the film we’re taken on an almost painful ride through all the shit Sarah Palin doesn’t understand, hasn’t thought through fully, gets frustrated when thinking deeply about, or just shuts down completely when forced to contemplate…

…yet her absolute “unapologetic” opposition to the full spectrum of reproductive health care including abortion is set aside as something she’s “got”.

Right.

Making a movie that indicts McCain’s campaign for not knowing how FUBAR Palin was on [insert anything here] while giving them a pass for giving her a pass despite how wrong she was on reproductive choice is the political movie making equivalent of choosing a VP nominee by reviewing YouTube videos of high profile conservative women talking politics.

Watching a movie that depicts just how casually campaigns treat reproductive choice...how blatant they are about the use of choice as a voter mobilization tool...well, I found it all as disturbing as Sarah Palin's alleged obsession with her poll numbers in Wasilla or her choice of hockey jerseys as lounge wear.

Blink.

1 comment:

Deborah Newell Tornello said...

THANK you for saying one of the main Great Unsaid Things about Palin: She was ardently anti-choice, and they were all fine with it (because it "excited the base").

Another Unsaid Thing: Palin leapfrogged over far more qualified women because she was pretty.

It was implied, but come on: her looks were the main thing that sealed the deal for McCain, but more importantly, they were what sealed the deal with Bill Kristol and other necons the year before. Funny how that stuff didn't get mentioned!