I posted the other day that watching the news was like watching a GDI or NOD cut scene.
This was a very specific joke for a very specific handful of Command and Conquer fans (wink!), but I wanted to include more of you Gen Pop in my observation.
Watching updates about anything “IS” related has stopped looking like a regular news program, and now seems more like a movie. For one, news broadcast production value has gotten shockingly good, but the main driver is the spectacular display of wanton attacks and villainy that only seem possible on the silver screen.
Sadly, it is very real.
But enough with reality, let’s make with the entertainment! So to that end I wanted to recommend a movie that came out in 2005, Syriana.
If you haven’t seen it, let me get you up to speed – Syriana is the Traffic of the international oil industry. Which makes sense, because it was directed and co-written by Stephen Gaghan – the same guy who wrote Traffic. The common trait of these two movies is the technique of having multiple disparate storylines and characters come to a climactic head. It’s a fun little mental jigsaw puzzle for the viewer to solve, and then say “oh dear…”
The cast of characters include a grizzled CIA agent (the Cloonster), a couple of mega-rich sheiks, an economist, a Texas oil magnate, a sleuthing lawyer and a gaggle of Islamic extremists. Throw in a priest and a rabbi and it sounds like the set up to a really unfunny joke.
What is so interesting to me is that each one of these people truly believes they are doing the right thing for their country, faith or family, but it plays out with eye-widening results.
This movie makes you feel really small too. We get so into our own little world of social media updates and smartphone launches that we forget that there really are people whose seemingly insignificant daily decisions have a global effect – for better or worse.
So go rent, download, or torrent Syriana if you want to see a quality flick. If you want to see the sequel, just turn on the news.