• War Movie ‘Lone Survivor’ Makes a Porno

    February 4, 2014

    Tags: , ,
    Posted in: Afghanistan, Military

    I don’t watch a lot of porn, or a lot of other movies, but stuck in a motel off a highway on the edge of nowhere, it’s either pay-per-view or Meet the Press, and that show crosses a line in offensiveness.

    The movie I watched, Lone Survivor, was made by Leni Riefenstahl to tell the story of four Navy SEALs in Afghanistan who, in the process of mowing down about ten million Afghans (“Taliban”), end up with only one SEAL guy surviving. If that spoils the end of the movie for you a) watch Meet the Press. It too has its whole narrative in the title and b) I’m glad it spoils the movie for you because I should be the last person on earth who pays to see it.

    But flipping between the porn and Lone Survivor, I realized they are pretty much the same movie.

    Both lack context. In porn a woman sits in a room, a man enters and they have sex. We don’t know or care about who they are, why they are there, even what their pretend names are. In Lone, we do know from the credits it is set in Afghanistan (albeit an Afghanistan that looks like New Mexico.) Otherwise, it’s just one set of guys killing another set of guys for our vicarious pleasure. We don’t know who they are (the SEALs are all named Mac, or Murph or Biff anyway), really why they are there except to kill (have sex) and we really don’t care.

    A feature of porn seems to be denying the realities of biology and physics. Every thing is bigger than in real life, even to the pneumatic point where no one is even trying to pretend it is real. It obviously is completely fake, but that doesn’t matter because that’s what porn is about.

    In Lone, the main character falls off a mountain not once, but three times, bounces down off rocks, lands on his back on rough ground, slams into a tree, only to show up at the bottom with some scratches, shouting “good to go.” One Biff gets shot multiple times, including in the head, and keeps going. The lone survivor dude (and they are all dudes) does not bleed to death or go septic over giant pieces of shrapnel in his leg, and even digs them out with a dirty knife. Oh– the wounds were also rubbed in dirt and dunked in a stream. Guess he got a tetanus shot.

    Depending on your point of view, typically one partner in a porn film is really just there as a kind of prop, to support the person(s) you are supposed to want to see. Same in Lone. The literally hundreds of evil dog Taliban have no purpose other than to be slaughtered, often in the super close-ups also favored by porn. Things spurt as bullets enter their bodies, and they move through the movie anonymously like, well, sorry, a gang bang crowd. In both movies, everyone is just a target.

    The worst thing however about Lone Survivor is that in the end it is a terrible movie. Porn is what it is, and sort of exists simply to provide whatever stimulation one gets from watching it. Lone just devolves into an endless loop of killing that gets so boring the viewer keeps flipping back to the pizza guy surprising the lonely woman in the bath.

    When the time is up for both movies, you feel about the same. Any pleasure is wiped away as you realize people were exploited, and your emotions hijacked, for a cheap thrill. You feel empty, used. You’re embarrassed by war porn that tries to convince you that killing people in Afghanistan has some purpose, same as you’re embarrassed that you believed for a selfish moment that all those oohs and ah ah ahs just might have been real. Both movies make you feel good briefly about something that isn’t good.

    And you can’t tell anyone about what you did. You are the Lone Survivor.


    BONUS: Despite constant bragging about how the SEALs are the most highly trained warriors on earth, not one in the movie speaks one word of Pashtu. In the odd moments were Afghans need to be told how to service the SEALs’ needs, communication is done via shouted English and threats. You’d think at some point in all that training a little local language would come in handy. But, like with porn, you’re not there for the dialogue, right?




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  • Recent Comments

    • Eric Hodgdon said...

      1

      I don’t watch porn either. Why would anyone ever want to?

      While I’m lacking female companionship, I take up my other passion – this thing called the RESISTANCE to STUPIDITY or why the federal government needs to die. Please dear federal government provide me with someone soon!

      02/4/14 3:01 PM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...

      2

      “But flipping between the porn and Lone Survivor, I realized they are pretty much the same movie.”

      The only difference is..

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uCaf7YUmQxA

      ‘Murica will eat it up though. Just like Olympus Has Fallen. Hollywood= American Bloodporn for Dollars. Popcorn anyone?

      02/4/14 3:34 PM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...

      3

      Twentieth Century Fox= Subsidiary of DOD. Coming to a theater near you soon.

      02/4/14 3:42 PM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...

      4

      Peter. Do me a favor. Please. Kevin banned me from the Dissenter. There is a commenter I would like to respond to who, in response to your same post there said:
      quote:”Murder and bloodlust must be there too, nature is cruel and unrelenting and we survived as a species, but mixing pleasure and savagery is sick. Please don’t contribute to this self-destructive, societally systemic, mental confusion.”

      Mixing pleasure and savagery is PRECISELY the point of the link I provided above. Please leave it for him to get a clue to the REAL perpetrators. After all..it’s US military DOCTRINE.

      02/4/14 3:51 PM | Comment Link

    • wemeantwell said...

      5

      Pitch, I responded to the commenter. I can ask Kevin, but FDL has its own ideas and standards for comments that I cannot control. Here on WMW I try to allow as much as possible and allow the free market to weed out things, like a good American.

      02/4/14 4:07 PM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...

      6

      Thanks Peter. Yeah, well Kevin’s ideas on controlling his comment section are in direct conflict with his views on First Amendment issues. Besides, he doesn’t like explicatives and or ideas that he deems “conspiracy” or outside the topic at hand. So be it. His blog and his rules. I’ll take your blog or emptywheel any day of the week. After all, yours and Marci’s policy aligns with free expression. Vs censorship. Thanks again.

      02/4/14 7:59 PM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...

      7

      Speaking of O/T, did you see the Judicial Committee hearing this morning? OMG. I love to see people in the DOJ get their ass whipped on live TV. And whip Coles ass is what they did. First time in a long time I’ve seen a majority of a committee fighting for citizens rights vs acquiescing to scumbags in agencies. Goe Poe!!

      02/4/14 8:04 PM | Comment Link

    • Kfish said...

      8

      You horrible man, after I got the Riefenstahl joke I had to look up who actually made this movie.

      (Leni Riefenstahl was the mother of the modern propaganda flick, with her debut in 1934 of “Triumph of the Will”, a 2 hour black & white glorification of Hitler. The movie is available on Youtube in its entirety.)

      02/5/14 11:10 AM | Comment Link

    • wemeantwell said...

      9

      The good news is that while the Nazis had to commission their own propaganda, in the beauty of our free market system people make movies like Lone Survivor and Zero Dark Thirty on their own for profit!

      02/5/14 1:31 PM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      10

      Peter,

      The NSA was watching you watching porn. The difference between the porn movie and “LS” was a “Happy Ending.”

      02/5/14 1:25 PM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      11

      02/5/14 1:36 PM | Comment Link

    • Kyzl Orda said...

      12

      What are the chances Hollywood will do a film about the other ‘Lone Survivors’? US hostages Bowe Bergdahl and Warren Weinstein

      02/5/14 3:15 PM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      13

      02/5/14 3:49 PM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...

      14

      goddamnit.. I love this blog.

      Parallel thoughts create neurons full of connectedness…ie..LAST SURVIVOR as internet fodder for interactive journeys of perspective…

      http://sipseystreetirregulars.blogspot.com/2014/02/the-47-ronin.html

      The journey of legal imperialism is as deep as the existence of the human specie on this planet.

      Here is just one example.
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ronin
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daimyo
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shogunhttp:

      02/6/14 12:18 AM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...

      15

      ps>>>>>>>
      quote”

      Film

      Ronin are often depicted in the jidaigeki of Akira Kurosawa, in particular Yojimbo, Sanjuro and the film Seven Samurai.

      The 1998 film Ronin portrays former Special Forces and intelligence operatives who find themselves unemployed at the end of the Cold War. Devoid of purpose, they become high-paid mercenaries. There is also a comparison of the characters to the Forty-seven ronin.” unquote

      This is what Mike Vanderbough was referring to.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ronin

      total abject failure as a film. Hollywood is clueless to Legal Imperialism as truth.

      02/6/14 12:29 AM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...

      16

      quote”Speaking of real-life porno, the Vatican has been jerking us off for years: “unquote

      Rich, notwithstanding the irony of your satire, the Vatican was simply a johnny come lately to legal imperialism. And they still think they are in the 16th century.

      02/6/14 12:46 AM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...

      17

      And now it’s time to come to grips with reality as the next attempt at Legal Imperialism unfolds on the North American continent.

      http://cdn.ca9.uscourts.gov/datastore/general/2014/02/04/13-15957and13-16731_gov_opening_brief.pdf

      02/6/14 12:53 AM | Comment Link

    • meloveconsullongtime said...

      18

      Re: “Speaking of real-life porno, the Vatican has been jerking us off for years”

      (Sigh), this bullshit gets so wearisome, but I feel obliged to answer:

      1. Unknown to almost 100 percent of you Americans (including almost 100 percent of American Catholics!), the Pope has almost zero authority over any Catholic Bishops or Priests. 99 percent of authority is local, 99 percent of authority is in every different local Bishop, not the Pope. You can blame various Bishops for these scandals, but the Pope has never had much authority over any of them. You are making false assumptions about how authority works in the Catholic Church: The Pope has almost no authority over Bishops or Priests.

      2. “the Vatican has been jerking us off for years” – WHO? Do you mean the Vatican has been jerking off AMERICA for years? If that were true, then there would have been a lot more Catholic Presidents of the USA, other than JFK who was assassinated. Come on, get real.

      3. And then I can’t resist mentioning that statistically, the one percent of Catholic Priests who molest youths is equal to that of all other clergy, Protestants and Jews etc. And the majority of cases of Catholic Priests sexually molesting youths, is of homosexual Priests seducing male teenagers. It’s not pedophilia, it’s homosexuality.

      4. Americans don’t need the Vatican to jerk them off, Americans are already expert in jerking themselves off! Cf, this masturbatory tribute to GW Bush, Commander in Chief!:

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TAP64DrMBk8

      02/6/14 6:35 PM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      19

      LS should be shot down as violence porn gets the mentally disturbed pissed off. Violent video games played into the Newtown psycho’s fantasies. During a screening of Lone Survivor, retired police officer Curtis Reeves, 72, shot and killed 43-year-old father Chad Oulson for texting during the film previews. The pair had been arguing about the father’s cell phone use, and the retired cop reportedly left the theater and returned in a very agitated state. He eventually pulled out his handgun and killed Oulson after he’d allegedly thrown popcorn at the ex-cop. Maybe they can sue the filmmakers.

      02/6/14 8:13 PM | Comment Link

    • jhoover said...

      20

      wemeantwell,

      I don’t know if read this about musicians and state department.

      A State Department bulletin recently reported that “there are substantially more people employed as musicians in [Department of] Defense bands than in the entire foreign service,” meaning the State Department and the United States Agency for International Development.
      http://forward.com/articles/11294/let-the-bands-march-into-baghdad-/

      02/7/14 1:52 AM | Comment Link

    • Kyzl Orda said...

      21

      Interesting article, JHoover. And the “Jewish Daily Forward” wrote that only a couple of months after the Iraq invasion

      State officials have cited concerns with the discrepancies in how funding is or isnt allocated. But if Human Resources is going to allow good federal employees like Peter and other whistleblowers to be fired, ironically playing a part fighting a war to defend ‘freedoms’, does the agency deserve more funding?

      02/7/14 2:26 AM | Comment Link

    • Kyzl Orda said...

      22

      To clarify – But if Human Resources is going to allow good federal employees like Peter and other whistleblowers to be fired, ironically *while State is*playing a part fighting a war to defend ‘freedoms’ ….

      And playing a part, is sadly all it has been

      02/7/14 2:32 AM | Comment Link

    • jim hruska said...

      23

      PVB,
      A few small points.
      -On the cover of the LS is a few tells. They call it OPN redwing when in fact it was redwingS. With an s. Yep this is a small point but it says a lot.
      -on the latest edition they have Walburgs picture which implies that the image and entertainment show biz persona is more important than the actual participants.Celebrity is all.
      Luttrells website hawks and sells items of interest to the war porn crowd.It’s pure snake oil.
      This movie/book does not distinguish the difference between myth, fiction, entertainment, reality, brainwashing and/or propaganda.I wonder if the Navy funded it as a recruiting tool?
      jim hruska

      02/8/14 1:33 PM | Comment Link

    • wemeantwell said...

      24

      Wait Jim– are you saying you don’t like comic books?

      The whole thing reminds me of playing war as a kid. One of my friends had a fake “rising sun” flag so our games were always Japanese v. Americans. Nobody wanted to play the Japanese side, because in our games they died with one shot while the Americans never died and always won. The difference is that we were playing in a backyard and the war ended when mom called us in for lunch. Crap like Lone Survivor is about more tragic stakes.

      02/8/14 3:23 PM | Comment Link

    • jim hruska said...

      25

      PVB,
      Leon Russell-Ballad of a Soldier.Listen to it when u get a chance.
      I don’t like to talk my blog up at your home station , but i’ve written extensively on this lone survivor episode as well as all the major fights, and all the MOH scenarios and they all smell. I speak of Afgh to keep it simple. Only CPT Swenson escapes my critique as he sure seems the real deal. All the rest are replays of LS.
      Simply put it’s all hyperbole and superlatives and that ain’t what ground combat is all about.
      My sticking point is that Marcus said that LS is not a political movie, and by extension this means that neither is the book. This is pure hog wash since it’s all about American exceptionalism and the right to profit from combat loses.
      This mission should never have been launched.
      The movie is the same as it’ll lead a few sheep to slaughter.
      The point i will close on is- was anything of value achieved by all the loss of life on both sides?
      jim hruska

      02/8/14 5:21 PM | Comment Link

    • wemeantwell said...

      26

      Jim, you’re a regular, so always feel free to point out pieces, with a URL, on your site or elsewhere.

      02/8/14 5:31 PM | Comment Link

    • meloveconsullongtime said...

      27

      Americans: Religious fanatics standing on their own Calvinist bootstraps. Barbarian religious fanatics full of superstitious beliefs about “progress”.

      Here’s how the American Empire will end, soon:

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l8WyXv7hQvE

      02/10/14 9:40 PM | Comment Link

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