I Liked "White House Down"

by Stan Heller

Figured I'd hate the Jamie Foxx movie, another presidential glorification movie, so I waited to rent it for a buck. I was pleasantly surprised. It was worth it...a buck. Lots of explosions and shooting and people falling down neatly. It's a PG-13 "Die Hard" movie, but with better politics and less gore. Here's the official trailer.

Some PLOT SPOILERS below.

The bad guys are bad. One of them even shoots an oil painting of George Washington, for no reason at all. That's how bad they are. But seriously President Jamie Foxx wants to make Middle East peace. He wants to pull all the troops out of the Middle East and sign a deal with Iran. As he tries to win over top members of Congress a gang of terrorists start blowing up things, shooting people and kidnapping the POTUS. Channing Tatum, a Secret Service wannabee happens to be in the White House along with his 11 year old daughter (who has a blog) and maybe he saves the day. (I wont' give that away.)

President Foxx (I guess he's actually called President Sawyer) has a fair political analysis. The arms dealing companies don't want peace so they can sell weapons to both sides. (No mention of Israel). The president actually says that the head of Iran has the proof of all this and he's about to reveal it to the world. And would you believe it. It turns out the politicians who are in league with the "military-industrial complex" are behind the baddies. There's also the aspect that some of the bad guys think a war to squash Iran will be the War to End All Wars. Do I smell Minister Hagee here?

I'm not the first to discover the politics of the movie. See the bad review the movie got in the piece "The Surprisingly Left Wing Politics of 'White House Down' " in the rightist New Republic.

While we're on the subject of high culture the November 17 episode of "The Simpsons" has one plot segment about Lisa Simpson being picked to join the cheerleaders at the adult football game. She finds out how little they make and organizes them to go on strike. (Excellent strategy, strike first, union afterwards). They go out and picket and in the background we hear Woody Guthrie signing one of his old union songs. Nearly brought a tear to my eye.