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Review :: GLBT/Queer : International : Media : Politics
Brokeback 93
01 May 2006
Modified: 09:46:27 PM
Boo hoo, Waaaa waaa waaa! Everybody's squirting over United 93. Whole theaters reduced to tears. Critics reduced to jingoistic, flag waving boobs! Boo hoo! Waaa waa waaa! USA! USA!

The sheer sentimentality of all things September 11 is disgraceful, and is rapidly becoming unbearable. But the attacks were FIVE YEARS AGO, and because the grim seriousness with which we treat all things September 11 has been used for nefarious purposes like war and police state crackdowns, it is way past time to start laughing at 9/11 bullshit.

So... In the grand tradition of worst case scenario air travel flicks that includes Airplane!, Air Force One, and Soul Plane, comes United 93, a movie about the September 11 flight that crashed in Shanksville, Pennsylvania after passengers and crew fought back against the hijackers.

Apparently there's two safe reactions to this film for MSM critics.

One is, like Matt Zoller Seitz in the NY Press, the "exploitation" cop out—It's too soon to make a September 11 movie because the film dishonestly steals emotional force from a national tragedy the wounds of which are still bleeding blah blah..

The other safe MSM way to go is salute the flag and call it the best movie ever—that way your patriotism is totally un-impugnable, e.g., "If only to honor their heroism, and inspire our own, this film must be seen," writes Paul Greengrass in the Phoenix. Or "United 93 is an excitingly paced, effectively written and extraordinarily well-acted film that immediately grabs you and brings you back to that horrible day," writes David Wildman in the Weekly Dig.

Why doesn't anyone have the guts to tell the truth, that United 93 sucks because the September 11 attacks, by themselves, weren't really that big a deal?

To be honest, I haven't actually seen United 93 and I'm not going to, but since I haven't been able to totally avoid the reviews and hype, I need to set the record straight on a few counts.

First of all, contrary to the reviews, reaction to September 11 was not uniformly grief and lust for revenge. My reaction to the attacks, for example, was basically to shrug and say "What'd you expect?" You can't keep bombing and invading these countries all the time and expect that nobody will ever get pissed off and hit back at us.

Keep in mind the context of the attacks. Two years previously, in 1999, the United States conducted "Operation Allied Force," a cowardly three month bombing campaign against Serbia involving up to 1,000 aircraft flying 38,000 combat missions. Reports at the time indicated the Pentagon was seriously worried that they might RUN OUT of Tomahawk cruise missiles.. That followed Operation Desert Fox, the massive three day air campaign of December, 1998 against Iraq for supposedly interfering with UNSCOM's search for Saddam's nonexistent wmd... That one came after the August 1998 firing of 13 cruise missiles at a pharmaceuticals factory in Sudan.. Need I continue?


My point is, for people who'd been keeping score, September 11 didn't exactly come as a surprise.

My reaction to September 11 was basically, yeah it's a tragedy for the victims, but shit happens. People die all the time in natural disasters, famines, car accidents, and from American cruise missiles, and nobody gives a crap. But when two thousand bond traders burn on the Today Show, it's "Uh-oh, watch out third world slum dwellers, here comes Uncle Sam, and he is so pissed!"

(My other, even more subversive thought was, "Guys, it's the big white house right in the middle of Dirty City. How can you miss it? The next time you decide to hijack planes, check a fucking map first!*)

Personally, as I watched the towers burn on September 11, what I obsessed about was not Al Qaeda or Saddam, but the inevitable Bush Country crackdown. Five Years on, after Iraq, Guantanamo, transportation security, the Loyalty Act, the GWOT, military tribunals, and NSA warrantless surveillance.. was I wrong?

Anyhow, one great reason to stay away from United 93 is because the United 93 families were directly involved in the production of the movie. Do these people really need any more of my cash? Cuz it's not like they're not already filthy rich from the ridiculous jackpot they scored in the overwrought aftermath of the attacks, when Congress created a fund which eventually gave then over $7 billion in compensation.

Read that again. $7 billion.. in compensation. Take $7 billion divided by about 3,000 dead at the WTC, Pentagon, and aboard the hijacked planes and you get about two and a third million per victim.

(Question—Were those military dudes at the Pentagon really on track to make two million over their careers?)

Lisa Beamer, the greedy sobstress who thinks she owns the common figure of speech "Let's Roll," and who endorsed the invasion of Afghanistan in which up to 3,600 civilians were killed as a result of US bombing, is another great reason to boycott United 93.

Yet another reason to stay home is because the film depicts the September 11 terrorists as cowards, which is a lie. The hijackers may have been misguided jerks, but they were definitely brave jerks. Bill Maher was fired from ABC in 2002 for saying as much, so you know it's true.

But the best reason to stay away from United 93 is, the script is a joke. I haven't even seen the stupid movie, but it obviously needs work. Here's the plot: terrorists hijack plane, "LET'S ROLL!," passengers attempt to break into cockpit with beverage cart, terrorists crash plane. And that's it. Sorry, but that ain't no movie. That's called "Scene One" in a REAL film.

I am NOT parting with (almost) a Hamilton for a movie with NO plot.

Here's my pitch. Call it "Brokeback 93"—It's a Bruce Willis/Chris Tucker gay buddy-action film that starts with the lame hijacking scene, except Willis' estranged wife Holly, played by a plucky Bonnie Bedelia, is a passenger headed to San Francisco to disrupt Willis' wedding to a free spirited homeless graffiti artist named "Czar" played by Chris Tucker.

In a cruel twist, Willis and Czar are denied a same-sex marriage license by the San Francisco County Clerk's office on the grounds that Czar attended a Al Qaeda training camp with Osama during the Soviet war in Afghanistan.

As the clerk stamps "denied" on the marriage application, we see the United 93 terrorists rush the cockpit in slow motion, brandishing machetes, plainly illustrating the theme that the forces of reaction and religious bigotry are on the march.


Enraged by the murder of Bedelia and the denial of their marriage license, Willis and Czar take on Czar's old master, Bin Laden, and his terrorist hordes in the mountains of Afghanistan. The climatic scene takes place in Osama's Tora Bora mountain hideout where Willis and Czar discover the ultimate secret that Al Qaeda is a front for Michael Moore's film production company and that Moore plotted September 11 as a documentary film project gone badly awry.

Moore attempts to defend himself on the grounds that he is making another documentary blaming the attacks on President George W Bush, who appeared earlier in a witty cameo as the smirking, homophobic clerk from scene one.

Willis appears to listen sympathetically, but suddenly wheels and fires a rocket-propelled grenades into Moore. As Bruce sneers "Yippee-ki-yay, lard ass!" Moore's body spurts blood and explodes in a volcanic eruption of guts, with pieces of legs, arms and torso flying everywhere.

The films ends on an upbeat note at Willis and Tucker's civil union ceremony at the State House in Montpelier, VT presided over by a jubilant Governor Howard Dean.

Now THAT would be a movie. United 93, eat your heart out!

*Ha ha, just joking Mr. Secret Service agent, sir. In reality, my first thought on that horrible morning was, as a patriotic American how can I help support the government as we fight to bring Saddam (or whoever) to justice?

This work is in the public domain
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02 May 2006
wow you're so cool. but you believe in the 19 hijacker bullshit apparently, so this is just stupid.
Re: Brokeback 93
02 May 2006
9-11 never happened, it was all a government fabrication. They used the same studios that they used for the lunar landing fabrication. Michael Moore was goingt o work on the fabrication ( he has alot of experience with non-truths), but he he was outbid.
Re: Brokeback 93
03 May 2006
you forgot about torture and Abu Gharib...

"Five Years on, after Iraq, Guantanamo, transportation security, the Loyalty Act, the GWOT, military tribunals, and NSA warrantless surveillance.. was I wrong?"
Re: Brokeback 93
03 May 2006
That's crazy! How could the terrorists get machetes past airport security?
NASA Hanger (John Glenn Hanger) Cleveland.
03 May 2006
The passengers of flight 93 were taken off the jet on 9-11.
Also, flight 93 is still flying! Check the tail number.
Do a google search. Learn something.
Re: Brokeback 93
03 May 2006
nice one!

yeah man, it about time we got over the idea that american lives are worth so much more than anyone else's lives. at least sept 11 was good for waking up a lot of people here about what their govt is up to in other places. not to mention the fascism which is about to eclipse any remnants of the old democratic united states.

light one up and keep laughing!
Re: Brokeback 93
04 May 2006
I generally agree with you but at the same time, your "review" is completely off base. I suggest you actually see the film before you try to judge it AS A FILM.
Re: Brokeback 93
06 May 2006
I am leaving, actually. My flight's in August--Glad I could help make your worthless, Jesusland life even more "wonderful." Also, the park manager called and he said the rent is overdue on your lot, and the satellite dish is a violation of the trailer lease. Better call him back...
Re: Brokeback 93
06 May 2006
youre too ignorant to even relize that the usa stuck up for muslims in bosnia, somalia, and kuaiwt. as for the idiotic and unoriginal "jesus land, trialer park" stero types, id expect no less from mind dead heartless arrogant lefty moron like you. now go die, shit for brains
Re: Brokeback 93
06 May 2006
This is liberal bull shit
Re: Brokeback 93
08 May 2006
you should seriously find a very large stick or similar hard object and hit yourself over the head until your brain can no longer produce such filth as this article.
Re: Brokeback 93
09 May 2006
"A public media outlet for the radical, accurate, and passionate tellings of truth."

Re: Brokeback 93
13 May 2006
I "relize" that a charge of stupidity is probably more effective when it comes in a sentence that isn't riddled with spelling and grammatical errors.