Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Hollywood Patriotism!

Well, not exactly. Galley Friend J.E. sends us this report from the Russian MTV awards:

Scandal hit MTV Russia's movie awards ceremony Thursday when a presenter refused to announce the viewer-voted award for best movie after realizing which film had won.

Vladimir Menshov, one of Russia's leading directors, was onstage at Moscow's Pushkin Theater when he opened the envelope with details of the winning film -- the World War II drama "Svolochi," in which a group of teenage criminals is sent on a suicide mission behind German lines.

Menshov gasped as he read the contents of the envelope, looked up and said: "I'm not going to hand over an award to a film that discredits my country, let Pamela Anderson (another of the evening's presenters) do it instead."

He then turned, dropped the envelope and stalked offstage, refusing to comment further.

J.E. sums it up perfectly:

It's something absolutely unthinkable in this country. Can you possibly imagine someone at the MTV Awards here refusing to give the best pic award to a film that portrayed the U.S. as criminally unethical on grounds that it made our country look bad? Impossible. And yet, it happens in Russia, a country with far fewer reasons to be proud.


Dave S. said...

A country with fewer reasons to be proud is often that much more touchy about perceived or real threats to its national pride.

Jack said...

This post was jaw-droppingly short sighted. Dave S. just pointed out the tip of the iceberg, I don't even know where to begin.


Anonymous said...

Why don't you try to begin and enlighten us all. You're so damn smart it should not be a problem.

Anonymous said...

"... the World War II drama "Svolochi," in which a group of teenage criminals is sent on a suicide mission behind German lines."

So thank God The Dirty Dozen predates MTV. Can you imagine the shame all true American patriots would feel if MTV were to give top honors to a WWII drama in which a group of criminals is sent on a suicide mission behind German lines? Why, that would make our country look bad by portraying the United States as criminally unethical. America's reputation might never recover from such an outrage.

Anyway, if your country was once run by Stalin, isn't it a good thing, even maybe a director's patriotic duty, to make movies depicting Stalin's regime in an unfavorable light? Doesn't Menshov's little protest boil down to the declaration, "Suggesting that Comrade Stalin's regime might have mistreated a few young prisoners in wartime is an unforgivable insult to Russia"?

Standing up for the honor of the Stalin regime on MTV just doesn't seem like a patriotic thing to do, no matter what country you come from.