Movie Review: “Patriots Day” — It could have been great, but….

Patriots DayPatriots Day

a Review by

The Closet Conservative Critic

Before I delve in my first Movie Review on “The Bookworm” blog, allow me to state my “street cred.” I call myself the Closet Conservative Critic because for a number of years I was a closet conservative, meekly mingling with the Show-Biz Liberal masses in Marin County and Hollywood. I’m a graduate of the USC film school, and worked in Television and on Motion Pictures in Los Angeles for 12 years before returning to my roots of Marin County. I was a typical Hollywood/Marin Liberal most of my early life. Gradually, on my way to the age of 40, I began to slightly swing Right. I was 41 years old on September 11, 2001. Within a few months, I had completely gone to the political Right. Although most in my family, and closest friends know I’ve “come out,” I still walk very quietly and remain in the closet for the better part of my days.

About 10 years ago, as my conversion from Liberal to Conservative was just about complete, I began to grow a ‘radar’ antenna on my head, and was noting a greater deal of conservative bashing in television and movies. I suspect it was always there, but being a new member of the conservative team, my eyes were being opened to the amount of Liberal slant in entertainment.

Now, as I watch movies as a conservative, I’m very attuned to the subtle digs, and not so subtle belittling of conservative values in movies. Call it the Right, Call it the GOP, Call it conservative, Call it traditional, it’s all anything that is NOT Progressive or left of center. I will share my thoughts in the upcoming months, reviewing movies from the perspective of one who has his radar up. I’ll objectively review a movie on its merits, while at the same time, giving fellow conservatives my take on how the movie swings politically.

For this, my first review, let’s look at the recently released Patriots Day.

With the title, “Patriots Day,” one might think the movie initially leans to the Right, and will have a sympathetic view to that mind set. I will point out that it’s not blatantly leftist in its portrayal, yet the ending is not only unsatisfying, but also somewhat shallow and insulting. There are no spoilers in this, for anyone who knows of the Boston Marathon Terrorist Bombings of 2013, knows what happened and how it ended. For those who did not follow the news, or forgot, I’ll do my best to be coy with how it ends.

Patriots Day focuses on many of the people involved in the bombing that left 3 dead, hundreds injured, including 16 who lost limbs. The movie at times is graphic with what happened, but it’s quick and not excessive. The movie also introduces the main character as a role that was completely made up. This is something that many critics, myself included, fine troubling and dishonest. Mark Wahlberg plays the role of a heroic Boston Cop who is like a Zelig character and turns up in EVERY major scene of the movie. His character interacts with countless people who were REAL LIFE people . . . cops, politicians, marathon runners, and citizens. It’s a shame the writers could not make the central role out of someone who was actually there as a real person.

95% of the movie I enjoyed. I even knew what was going to happen, yet was intrigued by the way the movie was constructed. Two of the main characters are the bombers, and yes, they are Jihadist’s who are portrayed pretty much as evil and demented Islamists. The trouble is the resolution of Patriots Day. Although it is very clear that they are evil, and there is no sympathy toward them as movie characters or humans, there is little addressing the issue of HOW they became radicalized. . . . What was never indicated was their very clear motive:

Through an evil strain of Radical Islam, which has given us Islamists they want to see Sharia Law imposed, while they kill as many Americans, Jews, and Infidels as possible. (AND, they have the moral support of about 10% of the worlds Muslim population – no small number)

Give the director and writer credit for portraying these Islamists as evil, but give him a Liberal coward pin for NOT pointing out the root of their evil.

As I said, even with this minor beef, I was with the movie up until the resolution. The final 5 minutes of the movie shows all the survivors and victims of the aftermath as they are today. Those who are not dead, and celebrated justly as having overcome their injuries. My big beef is the movie NOT reminding us why they were disfigured . . . Radical Islam. Add to that, there is a nauseating TV clip of President Obama reminding us that America will not back down from fear and hatred. (I’m paraphrasing.) Yet, typically, what was never mentioned was the blame of the evil act, as coming from two immigrants who wanted to murder and maim as many Infidels as they could. . . .

Conservatives be warned: Good for 120 minutes, then 10 minutes of wanting to lose your lunch.