Fahrenheit 9/11
June 26, 2004 2:26 PM   Subscribe

Fahrenheit 9/11 tops box office If it's posted on Drudgereport, it must be official; This, despite an all out effort from the Vast Right Wing Conspirators to keep if from being shown...
posted by Rastafari (124 comments total)
if by "despite" you mean "because of"
posted by ignu at 2:29 PM on June 26, 2004

Impressive when you look at the number of theatres it has been released in. The film is quite good, though I thought his previous two documentaries were better.
posted by chunking express at 2:30 PM on June 26, 2004

Previous hopefully meaning Roger and Me and Bowling for Columbine. The Big One would be good if it was a TV special, but it's not a documentary.
posted by ALongDecember at 2:34 PM on June 26, 2004

Al Franken had the head of that 'citizens united' group on his radio show on Friday, when it was quite clear that their efforts were in vain. I'm sure it was just to subect him to a bit of public embarrassment. It was great. By the end the guy even tried to take credit for the film's popularity.
posted by Space Coyote at 2:35 PM on June 26, 2004

Also, from Drudge: An Anti-Michael Moore film festival...
posted by Rastafari at 2:36 PM on June 26, 2004

More evidence of that polarization thing I've been hearing about: check out the grade breakdown (user ratings) in the box on the right. Bowling for Columbine and Roger and Me are similar, but not quite so pronounced. Compare that to the breakdowns for other movies. Pretty clearly a love it or hate it (or maybe not "it," just "him") kinda thing...
posted by whatnotever at 2:39 PM on June 26, 2004

I don't have permission to view that link, Rastafari. Obviously, I'm not right-wing enough...
posted by salmacis at 2:40 PM on June 26, 2004

Sorry. this should work better.
posted by Rastafari at 2:41 PM on June 26, 2004

Hardly surprising when you look at what it's competing against in that chart...
posted by reklaw at 2:42 PM on June 26, 2004


your wish is my command......to a certain point, that is...


You mean like the billion dollar Harry Potter franchise, or Shrek 2, or Troy, or Spielberg/Hanks The Terminal....

I don't think I've seen ad campaign in tv, print or radio around here (Philly) for this movie....
posted by Rastafari at 2:47 PM on June 26, 2004

$8,200,000 on its first day out, tons of hype with a capital H. Sounds like Moore will get even richer off this one. As a political heavyweight and serious documentarian, no one deserves it more.
posted by dhoyt at 2:48 PM on June 26, 2004

To put it simply: despite Kerry's having spent a zillion bucks in the last few months, he is still pretty much neck and neck with Bush. Despite two very bad months of news for Bush, he is still neck and neck with Kerry. There seem to be but some 18% of voters who have not yet taken a stand one way or the other. Whoever grabs most of that will e the president. This split is reflected in just about all things these days.
posted by Postroad at 2:50 PM on June 26, 2004

Can't be that popular, I haven't seen the torrent out yet. ha.
posted by banished at 2:52 PM on June 26, 2004


Maybe those 18% should see this movie...
posted by Rastafari at 2:52 PM on June 26, 2004

I thought White Chicks was some high-art-new-wave-post-modern look at the plight of the black male. No? I agree, there really isn't much else new to watch this weekend, but I do think Moore's opening numbers are at least a little bit impressive. All the hype actually did translate into ticket sales.
posted by chunking express at 2:53 PM on June 26, 2004

I really don't see how Drudge and his digital brownshirts can spin Fahrenheit 9/11 doing three times as much business as White Chicks into 'MOORE FILM FAILS TO HIT TOP SPOT' as were doing previously.

posted by tapeguy at 2:55 PM on June 26, 2004

All the hype actually did translate into ticket sales

I think Fahrenheit 9/11 could be the liberals America's answer to The Passion of The Christ, but way to early to make that call.
posted by Rastafari at 2:59 PM on June 26, 2004

Furthermore, Kerry has a 15 point lead with the group of "persuadable" voters. Since Bush won this group by 14 points last election, it does not bode well for him this time around.
posted by bashos_frog at 3:26 PM on June 26, 2004

I'm not at all surprised that F911 will be the top new opener in America this weekend - not after the mob scene its been all weekend in Portland, Maine. Its playing at one theatre here (the always interesting yet slightly seedy The Movies on Exchange St, and people were quite literally lined up around the block to get tickets yesterday (a sunny day) and again today in the pouring rain. Its been quite a festival atmosphere, including everything from Green party members and other political activists handing out flyers and doing some voter registration to street buskers to the requisite crazy religious guy imploring everyone in the line to get saved, as the 'war in Babylon is the first sign the end is nigh'.

What has been most interesting is seeing how the local news stations have (intentionally or unintentionally) juxtaposed the premiere of this film with the local top story - the death of the 13th Maine soldier to be killed in Iraq.
posted by anastasiav at 3:38 PM on June 26, 2004

In reply to Skallas

>> I was *very* surprised not to see anyone out there getting people to register to vote.

In the Minneapolis opening at the Lagoon theatre were people from the DNC (shirts said so) with clipboards. I would tell you what they wanted but they seemed to avoid me like the plague (I think I reek of conservatism even in shorts and hiking sandals.)
posted by jadepearl at 3:41 PM on June 26, 2004

Rastafari, so you're saying that liberal's didn't go see The Passion of Christ? I know plenty who did and I'd bet $370,143,886 that F 9/11 won't get close to the Passion.

Moore confuses me. I saw an interview where he said his new movie was not political, it was a film and art. Then a few minutes later he says how he hopes the movie gets people out to vote.
posted by tomplus2 at 3:42 PM on June 26, 2004

tomplus - Fahrenheit 9/11 isn't a political film in the sense that he never endorses Kerry, it's strictly focused on what Bush has done to hurt this country. Moore is a political independent, who isn't a registered member of the democratic party. He argues that he would be out running for office and such if it was about the politics. I get his point, but the line of distinction is *extremely* thin. To the point where explaning it I'm confused already.
posted by banished at 3:54 PM on June 26, 2004

Just got back from seeing it in sunny Orange County, Ca. 2/3 full matinee with seemingly everyone clapping at the end.

Now I understand why that "nut" spent his life savings to get people to see Passion of the Christ. If I had an extra $42,000 lying around, I would rent out some theaters for this one.
posted by sciatica at 4:08 PM on June 26, 2004

Rastafari, so you're saying that liberal's didn't go see The Passion of Christ? I know plenty who did and I'd bet $370,143,886 that F 9/11 won't get close to the Passion.

No, that's NOT what I was saying.

What I meant was that the liberals may claim this movie as theirs as the conservatives claimed the Passion. Remember all the news stories when Passion came out about various churches buying tickets in bulk to hand out to their congregation; and the White House going out of it's way to say that the Bushes can't wait to see the Passion...

As far as matching the Passions total gross take ($300 million by your count), the current dislike of the US around the world may propel Fahrenheit 9/11 in similar financial stratosphere as the Passion, but, as I said before, way too early to make that prediction.
posted by Rastafari at 4:24 PM on June 26, 2004

It's not clear if it will win the weekend. It's hard to guess how a film will do just by the opening day gross.

It won't do Passion business, which made $26 million on its opening day.
posted by donth at 4:26 PM on June 26, 2004

Chicago... only had it on one screen: Hey Skallas, come down to the Century - they're running it 11 times a day. Went to yesterday's first showing and when we got out the line snaked down five floors of the spiral/stair ramp of the mall.
posted by ao4047 at 4:38 PM on June 26, 2004

It won't do Passion business, which made $26 million on its opening day.

I'd say it already did...

Passion opened on 3,006 screens, and made $26,556,573 (according to Box Office Mojo)

F 9/11 opened on 868 screens and made $8,200,000 (also according to Box Office Mojo, although estimated)

That means, per screen Passion made $8,835 and F 9/11 made $9,447.

Of course this is based only on an estimated take for F 9/11 so far.
posted by sycophant at 4:53 PM on June 26, 2004

It's not clear if it will win the weekend. It's hard to guess how a film will do just by the opening day gross.

Considering that it made $8+ million on it's first day, I'd say Michael Moore has already won, regardless of which movie comes out on top.

I say this because there has been a massive campaign by conservative groups to not let the masses see this movie.

The irony here is that the (latest) justification for the war in Iraq was to bring the same freedom and democracy to Iraq (and hopefully to the rest of the middle east) as we enjoy in America. And how are we celebrating that freedom here: by trying to suppress any media (especially this movie) which is critical of this President and his policies...

/least we forget, freedom of speech is supposed to apply more to unpopular speech than anything else....not that anyone is invoking the freedom of speech...since the government hasn't stepped in yet...
posted by Rastafari at 4:54 PM on June 26, 2004

Trivia time:

What do bullies fear ?

Hint: it's not truth.
posted by elpapacito at 5:04 PM on June 26, 2004

I think Fahrenheit 9/11 could be the liberals America's answer to The Passion of The Christ, but way to early to make that call.

Umm... why would Passion need an answer? And if it did, wouldn't it be, like, a Scorsese film or something instead of a Michael Moore?

Or is there some kind of rule that says both the left and the right need some sort of equal number of films they can cherish/villify?
posted by weston at 5:54 PM on June 26, 2004

I saw it yesterday in Austin at the Arbor and for Friday at noon the theatre was packed. The shows that afternoon sold out. Huge line of people in line to buy tix not knowing there was a fandango machine inside.

Today while driving by the bank near the theatre I saw the parking lot was overflowing and people were parking in fire lanes and places where they do when movies like LOTR opens.

I'm not surprised it is doing so well in Austin [the liberal oasis of Texas], but wish it were on more screens in smaller markets where people need to see it.
posted by birdherder at 5:57 PM on June 26, 2004

I saw the film yesterday. Bush really is an imbecile. There needs to be more filmakers and journalist with the courage to show what the political and corporate elite really are: dishonest, apathetic, greedy, self-serving scum. Oh, I forgot main stream media sluts like Katie 'Navy Seals rock' Couric who only care about their careers.
posted by disgruntled at 6:13 PM on June 26, 2004

Umm... why would Passion need an answer?

Check out this piece reiterating my point that this is Democrat's answer to Passion...

/ Not that the Passion requires an answer, inasmuch as Neil Young's "Southern Man" didn't require an answer, but Lynard Skinnard answered them anyway with "Sweet Home Alabama"....and I hope Neil Young will remember, a Southern Man don't need him around anyhow...
posted by Rastafari at 6:26 PM on June 26, 2004

Maybe Moore should rename it to "Passion of the Bush"!

Passion benifited from word of mouth. This film, which I saw last night is very good, I think it will have legs. It might not
sway many Republicans but it might help energize a large swath of apathetic non-voters and independants.
posted by thedailygrowl at 6:39 PM on June 26, 2004

Spokane is a pretty conservative town, so I won't really find out how it's doing til I go tomorrow. It will still be hard to tell because on the one hand, I bought tickets for the family last week when we went to Harry Potter. On the other hand, it's opening downtown, in the middle of our annual festival honoring 3 on 3 basketball, Hoopfest
posted by faceonmars at 6:43 PM on June 26, 2004

Can't be that popular, I haven't seen the torrent out yet.

Well, this sort of close.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 7:03 PM on June 26, 2004

Check out this piece reiterating my point that this is Democrat's answer to Passion...

OK. I think I get it. It's the success of a piece of media that speaks to you -- big enough that you know there are other people who care about it in the same way you do.

Though.... while I see the Moore piece as political, the hooplah over The Passion seemed more politicized to me.
posted by weston at 7:43 PM on June 26, 2004

Postroad: why don't you just post the most recent Bush/Kerry poll results in all threads that relate in any way to politics?
posted by scarabic at 7:47 PM on June 26, 2004

Expect sales to maintain over the weekend. This film is guaranteed steady sales for a long time. I took a friend who had not even heard about this movie, and he walked out declaring he will register to vote. George Bush is an easy, yet deserving target.
posted by Keyser Soze at 7:50 PM on June 26, 2004

As a foreign citizen (if you consider Canada foreign) I know I don't exactly need to see this movie, but is it entertaining or informative enough for someone like me to make a trip to the cinema for? I'd like to know before I plop down $15 at the local megaplex.
posted by Evstar at 8:02 PM on June 26, 2004

Those cam torrents are going to be hard to find, at least in English.

There's a torrent on one site I checked labelled as a 10meg sample of a cam copy; presumably the full version will show up later, if the label is accurate. Never underestimate the enthusiasm of cam-pirates and the laxity of minimum-wage theater employees.
posted by infidelpants at 8:49 PM on June 26, 2004

Or the enthusiasm of minimum-wage theatre employees to become cam-pirates.

I'd say most cam'd movies I've seen (not that I tend to watch pirated films) have been filmed from above and behind the audience (say, in the projection booth).
posted by sycophant at 9:14 PM on June 26, 2004

Did this movie ever get out as a screener? I don't want to download a shitty cam recording. I want AC3, Xvid, 1.4GB. :)
posted by Keyser Soze at 9:18 PM on June 26, 2004

Well, this sort of close.

Too close if you ask me!

/Ray Bradbury
posted by ejoey at 9:19 PM on June 26, 2004

As a foreign citizen (if you consider Canada foreign) I know I don't exactly need to see this movie, but is it entertaining or informative enough for someone like me to make a trip to the cinema for? I'd like to know before I plop down $15 at the local megaplex.

After seeing the film yesterday I told my friend I'd love to see it in Canada or the UK to see the audience reaction. I think it is informative --and entertaining to some degree-- to see. You'll leave the theatre [even more] grateful you don't live down here. And see a matinee. I don't think I'd pay CD$15 to see it.

You've probably seen a lot of the footage before --even the stuff from Iraq of injured US soldiers and civilian kids-- on CBC. The US media doesn't show that stuff to us. The way Moore puts it all together --admittedly anti-Bush-- makes it worth seeing.
posted by birdherder at 9:22 PM on June 26, 2004

I went to a sold-out showing of this film at 9pm last night in the suburban boonies of Stony Brook, NY. Despite the presence of the University here, this area is still pretty conservative - when I moved here 3 years ago there were Lazio stickers everywhere. Hope the movie continues to show to sold-out crowds.

I thought is was very good. Some parts were really difficult for me, though - I'm thinking of the sounds of 9/11 right after the credits. Starting with just sound and no images was extremely effective in setting the tone for the film.
posted by doublehelix at 9:28 PM on June 26, 2004

Each of my friends that have seen the film tell me there was a standing ovation at the end. Especially people I know in Quebec. Heh.
posted by Evstar at 9:37 PM on June 26, 2004

Just saw it... I have never been much of a Michael Moore fan, and I'm politically an independent, but a very well-informed one. And I urge EVERYONE to SEE THIS MOVIE.

Thank you, Michael Moore, for crystallizing years of reading and research and experience and frustration into entertaining, moving, easy-to-grasp video-bites.

This movie has given me at least a little hope that those who believe the hijackers were Iraqis will at last see the truth. Perhaps too optimistic, but I guess at least it makes me feel less crazy...
posted by airgirl at 9:40 PM on June 26, 2004

Evstar, if you screenings in your area aren't sold out, get to one pronto. It'll be worth the $15 CD, however much that is in your crazy foreign money. [insert emoticon indicating irony]

If you go and feel the money was wasted, send me an email and we'll work something out. Seriously. (Note: This offer applies only to Evstar, because Evstar asked. hama7 will need to negotiate a separate deal.)

Really, the more I think about it, the more I realize the film has succeeded in making me (like airgirl, on preview) an evangelist for it. I had no idea it would be as good as it was. And I'm glad I was part of the wave to give it an opening day (estimated) take of 8 million. (I bought my tix on Monday, and when I called Tuesday afternoon to try and add another seat, that showing was already sold out.) I encourage everyone to be part of at least the first-week wave to make this a phenomenon, something about which the less media-attentive will say "Huh? Topped the box office? What is this movie?"

And as I implied here, one of the film's great strengths is that though it uses Bush as a whipping boy and mascot, its critique is actually much deeper, stronger and more wide-ranging than trashing the current occupant of the White House. Moore may be ham-handed as a self-promoter, and he does occasionally stoop to a vaudevillian tone of discourse, but there are several scenes, and combinations of scenes, in this movie that are simply masterful.
posted by soyjoy at 9:49 PM on June 26, 2004

The p2p networks are clogged with fake versions of the film.
I tried downloading it off eDonkey, but on closer inspection it turned out to be a homemade porn flick.

Poor quality, to boot.

This doesn't usually happen with the p2p networks I frequent (I could download 'passion' without problems) - is someone deliberately trying to block people from downloading the movie for political or economical reasons?
posted by spazzm at 10:13 PM on June 26, 2004

"There is just one problem with that: undecided voters probably aren’t going to see the movie. At the showing I went to, the audience consisted mostly of dorky looking professor types, typical pierced-in-every-body-part leftists with “Kerry for President” T-shirts on, and other radical looking activists."

I saw two people with earrings and one person with a John Kerry shirt at the Hillsboro, Oregon showing. There were people from all walks of life, even stereotypically republican. Link is from MensNewsDaily, which Ironically the op ed piece was written by Amber Pawlick. Lets not even talk about the poli-cartoon they have on the online paper.

Spazzm: Downloaded copy from Gnutella2, it was a mexican porn film. Good question.
posted by Keyser Soze at 10:17 PM on June 26, 2004

I saw the film yesterday. Bloody brilliant, if I might say so myself. It successfully synthesizes a lot of information about Bush which are available (one might say "corroborated") by other sources (such as Craig Unger, who appears in the film) and has additional information I wasn't previously aware of (such as Hamid Karzai's previous relationship with America).

Moore's choice of music, unusual in documentaries, is also very much on the ball.

I only wish that everyone with a vote in November's presidential election would see this film.
posted by clevershark at 10:32 PM on June 26, 2004

I can tell you that at the AMC theater on 42nd street in NYC it was a capacity crowd all day Friday. They had shows starting every 40 minutes or so from 12 until closing.

This is unheard of for a documentary -- heck, when was the last time you saw a documentary in a commercial movie theater at all, besides IMAX?
posted by clevershark at 10:42 PM on June 26, 2004

FYI, the CAM is out. I haven't finished the d/l, but from the comments I've read so far on seeders who have the entire video, it's a poorly-cropped, crappy-audio release. But hey, at least it's 0-day. Just wait a couple of weeks and a decent TS should be out.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 11:16 PM on June 26, 2004

we just saw it in dallas where it's showing at several theaters. every show yesterday and today at all of the theaters were sold out. the crowd was mixed, in fact i commented to my husband that it wasn't "the usual suspects" - college kids and hippies. the entire room burst into applause at the end of the movie. i never thought i'd see that in dallas.
posted by centrs at 11:17 PM on June 26, 2004

The theater I went to had it on two screens and was packed, but many San Diego area theaters aren't showing it at all, or are showing it on one screen only.

I have to admit that I was shocked by the lack of screens, if only because I thought that the responsibility of the theater owners to maximize profits would override their political concerns.
posted by mosch at 11:45 PM on June 26, 2004

Moore's choice of music, unusual in documentaries, is also very much on the ball.

Indeed. I remember reveling in the multiple layers of irony when Moore brings back Bloodhound Gang's The Roof is on Fire ("Fire, Water, Burn"), playing the "verse" over shots of Iraqis "waving their hands in the air" - while leaving unstated the additional layers, such as the recording we're hearing being yet another white folks' appropriation of a great well-established tune created and popularized by black folks... actually there are a lot of things he leaves unstated - doesn't even drag in Bush's pathetic "jokes" about not being able to find the WMDs - but there's only so much time, and I don't know what I would've cut out.
posted by soyjoy at 11:48 PM on June 26, 2004

yeah, art cant move you to act, only politics and logic
posted by Satapher at 12:10 AM on June 27, 2004

Funny, but according to their ticket finder there seems to be only one Cineplex theatre playing this film in the entire country. The other chains seem to have it all over the place. The timing seems a little tight, but you have to wonder...
posted by George_Spiggott at 12:13 AM on June 27, 2004

Why the hell do people clap at the end of movies anyway? It's not like Michael Moore is there to here your applause, or the minimum wage movie theater employees give a damn if you liked the movie. And yet, I've seen F911, big applause at the end. Supersize Me, applause. Hell, I think there was even applause after Passion.

posted by graventy at 1:35 AM on June 27, 2004

Applause at the end of a film is the audience acknowledging how much they liked the film. It is a way to show honor to the producer of the film, wether that person is there or not. It is not understood by certain cultures. It can also mean that the film was so brilliant, that you wanted to stand up and physically show your gratification.
posted by Keyser Soze at 2:20 AM on June 27, 2004

In short, applause can be somewhat "self centered". You do bring attention to yourself when you applaud something.
posted by Keyser Soze at 2:21 AM on June 27, 2004

I like to have people give me a round of applause when I come out the bathroom. I usually have to pay them to do it, though.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 3:32 AM on June 27, 2004

Evstar, try a matinee at a cheaper rate. That's my plan for today if it's not sold out.

I've been hearing mixed reviews [what a surprise], like that it was better than Roger and Columbine but too focused on the Bush-Saudi link. Although that would seem to be the point IMHO. Also many have said there were tears for the more intense parts and applause at the end. Guess I'll find out today.
posted by yoga at 5:15 AM on June 27, 2004

LA Times via Smirking Chimp: 'Fahrenheit 9/11' is casting a wide net at theaters

In theaters nationwide, many viewers said they couldn't imagine loyal Republicans coming to see a movie the Bush administration had dismissed as a twisted montage of misleading innuendo and outright falsehoods. But for all the partisan hooting, the movie did appear to draw at least a strong smattering of the Republican and the undecided voters that Moore most desperately hopes to reach.
posted by amberglow at 8:05 AM on June 27, 2004

AnectdoteFilter: we went to see it Friday, but all shows were sold out, so we saw something else (suburban Chicago). I can guarantee you that no one in the lines for either theatre it was playing in would even think of voting Republican. We did see it Saturday night; same audience... It doesn't take a studio mogul to figure out that despite the hype, this one's got serious potential to flatline after the second or third weekend. Sure, it will make a lot of money - for a documentary - but it's no "Passion of the Jedi III" or "Harry Powers and the Crusaders on the Moon IV," no one's going to see this multiple times, and despite Moore's trademark OUTRAGE!!!, there's nothing new here and I'd doubt it's going to change anybody's mind.

(Slightly off: doesn't it trouble anyone cheerleading for this thing that Moore had film footage of prisoner torture eight months before it became public knowledge and he chose to suppress it in order to not hurt the film's box office? Of all the information in the film, that's the only thing that's not been disclosed or discussed elsewhere prior to its appearance in "Farenheit 9/11." Even though the footage itself is fairly innocuous compared to some of the other materials that have been published, that Moore could have done something... and didn't... leaves me to ponder just what moral high ground Michael Moore thinks it is he's standing on....

OK. Let the lovefest continue...)
posted by JollyWanker at 8:07 AM on June 27, 2004

It’s become all too clear that facts in Iraq have an anti-Bush agenda.
posted by the fire you left me at 8:10 AM on June 27, 2004

Jolly, would they have listened to him? He's not a journalist, or an objective guy at all. I can't imagine they would have taken him seriously, but i agree--he should have told congress or the media.
posted by amberglow at 8:22 AM on June 27, 2004

posted by troutfishing at 8:29 AM on June 27, 2004

"To put it simply: despite Kerry's having spent a zillion bucks in the last few months, he is still pretty much neck and neck with Bush."

LOL. Talk about lack of perspective. Bush has raised more money THAN ANY CANDIDATE IN AMERICAN HISTORY. He's the F@%&ing incumbent who can address the nation during prime time FOR FREE, and his disapproval rating still grow steadily week after week.

I respect your right to support the president, but get real.
posted by gesamtkunstwerk at 9:01 AM on June 27, 2004

JollyWanker: I can guarantee you that no one in the lines for either theatre it was playing in would even think of voting Republican

how exactly can you guarantee that? i'd love to know.

oh, and the film isn't release here until july 9th, so i guess i'll just have to wait to share the OUTRAGE!!
posted by knapah at 9:09 AM on June 27, 2004

"released" even... damn.
posted by knapah at 9:11 AM on June 27, 2004


Source on the eight months thing? It should be noted that there were reports about the torture quite some time ago,
but nobody cared before there was footage.
posted by Slagman at 9:34 AM on June 27, 2004

Good comment, stav!

*stands, applauds*
posted by jpoulos at 9:37 AM on June 27, 2004

Applause in a movie theater, I think, isn't so much self-centred as it is a sort of bonding mechanism. It's a way for a room full of individuals to recognize the impact of the shared experience - "we all watched this movie together, and we thought it kicked ass."
posted by jeffj at 10:42 AM on June 27, 2004

I think applause at the end of a movie is great! It feels very satisfying to clap. I don't care if it's perceived as self-centered, either.
posted by doublehelix at 11:32 AM on June 27, 2004

The Passion of the Bush sounds like a bad porno.

The Passion of the Bush


Dick Cheney
George Junior Bush
Cuntyleeza Rice
Colin Pounder
Gale Nothingon

"Mr. President, Sadist Hussein is hiding Weapons of Massive Dickstruction!"

You know you were all thinking the same thing.
posted by Pseudoephedrine at 12:13 PM on June 27, 2004

Just as an example of how widespread the buzz is, I was hanging out with some Australians at a Conference in Santa Monica last week. When we passed the theatre at the pedmall they started talking about how they really wanted to see Fahrenheit 9/11 which developed into a nice conversation about the benefits/disadvantages of parlementary systems and the recent history of the right wing in Australia.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 12:17 PM on June 27, 2004

In the theater I was in, there was aplause at the end of the film. I've never seen that happen in Ames, IA before. I'm guessing in some places it's common. A cultural thing, but not here.
posted by delmoi at 3:55 PM on June 27, 2004

I just saw the movie today. Thinking that the evening shows may be crowded, I went to the 1st showing of the day, at 10 am. The theater was almost filled to capacity. And I got their early.

All I can say is: wow! All I can hope for is that the DVD comes out before the elections so that it can be viewed by the masses.

Go Mike Go...
posted by Rastafari at 4:18 PM on June 27, 2004

Moore was planning on a mid-October DVD release, but that isn't yet certain.
posted by mkhall at 4:43 PM on June 27, 2004

He can do it if he really wants to. "Uncovered" came out on DVD some time ago, but won't be in theaters until this August.
posted by homunculus at 5:11 PM on June 27, 2004

Moore is bragging about being sold out here in Fayetteville, home of Ft. Bragg.

What he doesn't know is that the theater is a little art film joint downtown. Big fat whoop.
posted by konolia at 7:40 PM on June 27, 2004

You convinced me to go see it today and I was very impressed. It was a powerful piece of filmmaking and it made me very glad not to live in the States right now.

Maybe someone can clear this up for me, though. Remember the scene where the mother visits capitol hill and confronts the woman in the tent? What was the woman yelling at the mother? And after that, what about the younger woman who tells the mother it was 'staged'?

I took that to mean she was a Bush apologist who claimed that the mother's son's death was staged but some #mefites suggested that maybe the scene was staged. Maybe they were doing a second take and someone picked up on what was going on. If this is true, it doesn't make sense to leave that take in the film. It would seriously damage his credibility. Ideas?
posted by Evstar at 8:00 PM on June 27, 2004

Saw it this evening (in Texas). Whatever you think of the politics, it's clearly Moore's most effective work. I think he's matured significantly as a filmmaker, and this film shows it.

We took one of my kids with us; he's 14 (the other's at Scout camp this week; he'll have to wait for the DVD). We asked him on the way home what *he* thought about the war in Iraq and he said the most intelligent thing I could have hoped for: "I don't really understand everything about it, about why and everything, so I guess right now I don't have an opinion. But I know that some of the things we're doing over there are wrong, and I know that some of the reasons weren't true."

I'm so proud.

Evstar: The woman that made the "staged" remark I took to be referring to the pictures of Iraqi civilian casualties that adorned the placards the woman in the shelter had set up.
posted by Cerebus at 8:19 PM on June 27, 2004

I should add that the theater was *oversold* for the showing I was at, and opened a *second* screen to handle the overflow. The showing before ours was sold out. I noticed that the next showing (9:45pm) was also sold out when we were leaving-- the late shows on a Sunday night aren''t typically well attended-- and they were already selling tickets for the midnight show.

In Texas.

All the other theaters were basically empty.

No matter the opinions, I'm pleased that people are going to see it so they can form their own opinions instead of parroting what other people tell them.
posted by Cerebus at 8:24 PM on June 27, 2004

What he doesn't know is that the theater is a little art film joint downtown. Big fat whoop.

Tsk tsk. Jeebus doesn't like snippy.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 9:34 PM on June 27, 2004

I saw it today (Sunday) at 10am in Century City, CA.

totally packed. we sat in the third row all the way to the left, and this stupid movie was so damn good i cried at least a half dozen times.

for such a funny movie, it was weird to cry so often.

not only did this crowd applaud at the end, but applauded moore's name at the begining, but also, suprisingly applauded Harry and Bob Weinstein's names.

thats LA for ya.

anyway i wanted to tell everyone waiting in line for the 1pm showing that they were in for a treat.

i love when summer blockbusters live up to the hype.
posted by tsarfan at 9:58 PM on June 27, 2004

I saw it in NYC. I had to buy tickets online like four hours in advance. It was completely packed. People were laughing, bawling, and cheering throughout the film -- myself included.

While most of the information in the movie had already been available, I don't think it's ever been so well compiled and presented. I'd heard about a lot of this, but not all of it (e.g., a representative of the Taliban visiting the State Department in the summer of 2001) and certainly never with such a mix of sorow, humor, and anger. Bravo. I thought it was tremendous, and will probably see it again.
posted by subgenius at 10:33 PM on June 27, 2004

The theater I saw it at cancelled a showing of Around the World in 80 Days to add another showing of F9/11, which also sold out nearly instantly.
posted by litlnemo at 11:38 PM on June 27, 2004

I saw it this afternoon. The theatre was ninety percent full, and probably would have been full if hoopfest hadn't been finishing up on the streets below. People not only applauded at the end, but hissed whenever Condoleeza, Dick, Paul or Colin came on the screen. It was the first time I had ever witnessed that outside of the Rocky Horror Picture Show.
posted by faceonmars at 11:45 PM on June 27, 2004

The theater I saw it at cancelled a showing of Around the World in 80 Days to add another showing of F9/11, which also sold out nearly instantly.

Oh man, Arnold is gonna kick Moore's ass know.
posted by homunculus at 12:46 AM on June 28, 2004

It felt rushed to me. Am I the only one? The subject being overwhelming you're bound to lose focus a couple of times opening too many doors, but I was looking real hard at my watch about 50min in. Especially when the my-son-died-for-that-flag mama enter the show. It drag on and on, very painful. He even brings back the streets shots of his "home town" with the decrepit houses. That's what made Roger And Me so inescapable, but kind of felt recycled here. Maybe I don't care anymore. Yep, I don't care. Love the orwellian conclusion though.
posted by kush at 3:14 AM on June 28, 2004

Anybody else get a flyer on their windshield while inside watching the film? We got one that had a couple of quotes and a bunch of links to things like infowars.com, thenewamerican.com,underreported.com etc. One of the quotes was,

"We are on the verge of a global transformation. All we need is the right Major crisis and the world will accept The New World Order." - David Rockefeller

Anyone caring to help decipher, have at it. I'm still chewing on it, but you know how us thick North Carolinians are. ;)
posted by yoga at 6:20 AM on June 28, 2004

I think Fahrenheit 9/11 could be the liberals America's answer to The Passion of The Christ, but way to early to make that call.

I'd like to book both films in the same theatre at the same time, serve free beer, film the bloody brawl that breaks out at intermission, then put that out as a documentary.

I smell Oscar.

Oscar the grouch, that is...
posted by jonmc at 6:54 AM on June 28, 2004

Evstar -

Great - so I don't have to provide a refund? I was sweatin' it, only because I'd have to hunt down some of that wacky Canadian money.

As to the "this is staged" scene, I highly doubt that they were doing multiple takes of the mother encountering the tent woman. For one thing, as you said, it wouldn't make sense for Moore to leave it in if it actually was staged and someone had called him on it. For another, the interaction between the mother and the tent woman seemed genuine, in that the mother kept trying to convey to her that she was on her side, that she also had lost a child to the war, but the tent woman kept going on with her own diatribe and not listening. I think a more logical interpretation is that the woman saw the tent, Michael Moore (and crew) and the mother, and jumped to the conclusion that it was another of his wacky stunts and thought she could go in and spoil it. Her obvious unpreparedness for an answer to "where was your son killed?" indicated she had assumed the mother was just playing a part. Anyway, that's how it looked to me.
posted by soyjoy at 6:57 AM on June 28, 2004

I was positively surprised by the movie -- I tend to agree with Moore generally, but get very annoyed by his ranting and usually want to disagree with him at the end (of a movie or book) because of it.

This time he kept his ranting to a minimum and just let the subject speak for itself, so this movie could actually work in changing people's minds about issues.
posted by zeikka at 6:58 AM on June 28, 2004

Evstar, that woman in the tent (at the White House, not Capitol Hill) is a local fixture. She's been there for literally years, protesting nuclear arms.
posted by MrMoonPie at 7:06 AM on June 28, 2004

Since 1981, apparently.
posted by MrMoonPie at 7:08 AM on June 28, 2004

Maybe those 18% should see this movie...
posted by Rastafari at 4:52 PM CST on June 26

If you really believe that people on the fence should have their vote decided by a movie so unabashedly biased regardless of their political leanings you're just as scary as the ditto heads.

Far right, far left, all the same.
posted by justgary at 9:38 AM on June 28, 2004

If you really believe that people on the fence should have their vote decided by a movie so unabashedly biased regardless of their political leanings you're just as scary as the ditto heads.

How about they watch the movie just to get a point of view and/or some information about this administration and the war on Iraq. Then they can go out and do their research and make up their own mind about who to vote for.

I give people more credit than voting based on a movie, even if it is a documentary
posted by Rastafari at 10:53 AM on June 28, 2004

I give people more credit than voting based on a movie, even if it is a documentary
When you say people, you mean Non - US folks?
posted by thomcatspike at 11:58 AM on June 28, 2004

Far right, far left, all the same.

Not. Even. Close.
posted by Cerebus at 12:12 PM on June 28, 2004

I just returned from a screening in Toronto. Though the film from Fri-Sunday, the theatre this afternoon maybe had 25 people in it. I thought the movie was pretty good but not nearly as incendiary as I thought it would be.

Not being an American, there was something I didn't understand. When Gore was having to tell those folks that their complaint wouldn't be registered because there was no signature from a Senator.... why? Why did no Senator sign the thing? Surely there must have been Senators who were pro-Gore or anti-Bush or thought the whole election was snafu. What gives?
posted by dobbs at 1:14 PM on June 28, 2004

As long as we're asking questions (I can't answer yours, dobbs), how come this AP article is now reporting a $23.9 million weekend take for the movie (explicitly tagged to the last 3 days, not the five-day total), without any comment on this being more than a million over the previous estimate? Did David Germain just pull the number out of his ass and say "ehhh, it was something close to this, I'll just pop it in..." ???

Where is the place where the final weekend tally is officially announced? I assumed it would be at Variety, but they've still got the report from yesterday afternoon up. Anybody got a clue?
posted by soyjoy at 1:49 PM on June 28, 2004

Dobbs, my understanding was that the Dems cut a deal with the Repubs: we won't give you any shit over the certification, and in return you give us seats and chairs on a bunch of committees. We'll put all this behind us, and we'll work together.

Boy, that worked well.

I've seen it twice, and both times I was angry at George W. Bush and Michael Moore. The former for the past four years of dumb policy and hubris, and the latter for doing stupid shit and undermining his own thesis. If there'd been less smirking and winking (and playing "Cocaine" during the TANG bit? Jebus), I think it would've been an even more powerful film.
posted by RakDaddy at 2:14 PM on June 28, 2004

Dobbs, many, many of us in Florida have asked that question. The only quasi-legitimate response I've ever gotten from an elected official is that the name of the guy in the White House isn't as important as having *somebody* in there as quickly as possible. I don't buy it, but that's what I was told.

RakDaddy, I laughed pretty hard at at the "Cocaine" reference. While I agree that Moore wasn't able to completely rid himself of the winking and smirking, the humor was some much needed leavening of an otherwise horrifying film. Did it detract from the impact? Maybe, but it may have also encouraged more people to see the film. At least two people I work with are going to see the film now, based on the descriptions of the funny bits. "A spoonful of sugar" and all that.
posted by mkhall at 3:57 PM on June 28, 2004

soyjoy, the first numbers are estimates based on sampling. The second numbers are actual reported numbers. Usually the difference is pretty slight.
posted by chaz at 4:13 PM on June 28, 2004

I dunno, mkhall...I guess I'd rather someone avoid the cheap shot and show the subject hang himself. Like the Congresscritter from Florida who was talking about the Patriot Act's "transparency" and how he had a 1-800 number for his constituents. When the caption came on saying that he was lying, but here's his private desk number...that was fuckin' funny. I think it's also the kind of humor that doesn't detract from the film's impact.
posted by RakDaddy at 6:22 PM on June 28, 2004

Rastafari - If you really believe that people on the fence should have their vote decided by a movie so unabashedly biased regardless of their political leanings you're just as scary as the ditto heads.

Before the movie started, Leslie Hanser prayed.

"I prayed the Lord would open my eyes," she said.

For months, her son Joshua, a college student, had been drawing her into political debate. He'd tell her she shouldn't trust President Bush. He'd tell her the Iraq war was wrong. Hanser, a 41-year-old homemaker, pushed back. She defended the president, supported him fiercely

But Joshua kept at her, until she prayed for help understanding her son's fervor.

Emerging from Michael Moore's "Fahrenheit 9/11," her eyes wet, Hanser said she at last understood. "My emotions are just…. " She trailed off, waving her hands to show confusion. "I feel like we haven't seen the whole truth before."

In theaters nationwide, many viewers said they couldn't imagine loyal Republicans coming to see a movie the Bush administration had dismissed as a twisted montage of misleading innuendo and outright falsehoods. But for all the partisan hooting, the movie did appear to draw at least a strong smattering of the Republican and the undecided voters that Moore most desperately hopes to reach.

And some of them said they were deeply moved.

Moved enough, perhaps, to consider voting for Kerry in November.

For Richard Hagen, 56, it was the footage from Iraq: the raw cries of bombed civilians, the clenched-teeth agony of wounded American troops. A retired insurance agent from the wealthy River Oaks neighborhood in central Houston, Hagen described himself as a lifelong Republican. But then, standing by his silver Mercedes, he amended that: A former lifelong Republican.

"Seeing [the war] brings it home in a way you don't get from reading about it," he said. "I won't be voting for a Republican presidential candidate this time."

Mary Butler, too, may not bring herself to punch the ballot for Bush.

She didn't vote for him in 2000. But Butler, 48, said until this weekend, she was leaning strongly toward supporting him this year. "In a war situation, I figured it was too hard to switch horses midstream. I thought the country would be too vulnerable," she said.

Butler, a librarian from suburban St. Louis, said one sentence in Moore's film made her rethink.

After showing faces of the men and women of America's military, Moore reminds his audience that they have volunteered to sacrifice their futures for our country. We owe them just one obligation, he says: to send them into harm's way only when we absolutely must.

That got Butler. She doesn't feel the war in Iraq fits into that category. And that one sentence — a filmmaker's accusing voice-over — might cost Bush her vote in the pivotal swing state of Missouri: "This is probably the strongest I've ever felt about voting against him," she said.
Excerpted from the LA Times article 'Fahrenheit' Is Casting a Wide Net at Theaters.
posted by NortonDC at 6:43 PM on June 28, 2004

Usually the difference is pretty slight.

Right. That's why I found it odd that with a $2 million dollar difference between the two (the biggest-blockbuster-documentary-ever stories only had it beating Columbine by a couple hundred thou), the only reference I could find was in a feature story about documentaries where the new number was mentioned in passing. In other words, I would've expected the AP story to make the the new, higher numbers the lead. Thankfully, that story's now out there too, (AP version) so I can stop worrying.
posted by soyjoy at 8:10 PM on June 28, 2004


Just FYI, I didn't say that quote. I was quoting justgary's post above to respond to what he said.

Just clarifying, that's all. No big deal. Also, great point, BTW.
posted by Rastafari at 9:30 PM on June 28, 2004

Got it, Rastafari.
posted by NortonDC at 9:59 PM on June 28, 2004

House of Bush, House of Saud author Craig Unger and NewsWeek's Michael Isikoff seem to be having a tiff over details in the movie.
posted by homunculus at 12:44 AM on June 30, 2004

Unger's book was discussed here.
posted by homunculus at 12:58 AM on June 30, 2004

...The film is inspired polemic, and I enjoyed it (if that is the word--the second half was painful). It has some serious flaws of argumentation. I thought the best parts were where Moore just let the footage speak for itself.

It struck me during the second half how seldom one sees in mainstream US media any extended interviews with Iraqis who vehemently oppose the US occupation. Since these are probably by now a solid majority, according to polls, it is odd that we never hear from that point of view. There is an undertone of patriotism or even nationalism to national American news that is peculiar if one looks at the industrialized democracies in Europe, e.g.

The film has an affecting scene of a woman screaming that her innocent, civilian relatives had been killed, and calling down curses on the US (yikhrib buyuthum, may God demolish their houses). Given the thousands of Iraqis killed in the past 14 months, there must be a lot of persons who feel that way. Moore is the only one showing them to us, to my knowledge...

The Saudi bashing in the Moore film makes no sense. It is true that some of the hijackers were Saudis, but that is only because Bin Laden hand-picked some Saudi muscle at the last minute to help the brains of the operation, who were Egyptians, Lebanese, Yemenis, etc. Bin Laden did that deliberately, in hopes of souring US/Saudi relations so that he could the better overthrow the Saudi government.

The implication one often hears from Democrats that the US should have invaded Saudi Arabia and Pakistan after the Afghan war rather than Iraq is just another kind of warmongering and illogical. There is no evidence that either the Saudi or the Pakistani government was complicit in 9/11...

In any case, if Bush had been supporting the Taliban, why did he then overthrow them? If it was because they turned out not to be a Mussolini type of government that made the trains run on time, but rather to be supporters of international terrorism, then wasn't it logical for Bush to turn against them? The mid-90s temptation to support the Taliban, who seemed to be bringing order to Afghanistan (albeit the order of the mass grave) was bipartisan. Moore says Afghan president Karzai had been involved in the earlier pipeline plan, and now is president. I still cannot understand why the pipeline is evil. Afghanistans would collect $2 bn. a year on tolls, and the Turkmen would be lifted out of poverty, and Pakistan and India might have a new reason to cooperate rather than fighting. I personally wish it could be built immediately. It doesn't explain the US Afghan war (one thing cannot explain both the temptation to coddle the Taliban and the determination to get rid of them). The US only intervened to overthrow the Taliban reluctantly, and because it was the only way to get at al-Qaeda, which needed to be rooted out.

So, I think the second half the the film, on Bush's Iraq policy, has virtues. He turns out to have been prescient about how fictitious the reasons for the war were. But some of the innuendo about the Saudis and Afghans just seems an attempt to damn by association, and seem to me to be based on faulty logic and innacurate assertions.

excerpt from Juan Cole's rather exhaustive analysis of Farenheit 9/11
posted by y2karl at 8:07 AM on June 30, 2004

Related? Coincidence? You be the judge.

Cheney booed by crowd (presumably not all of them homolefties) at Yankee Stadium.
posted by soyjoy at 9:02 AM on June 30, 2004

Anybody else get a flyer on their windshield while inside watching the film?

Yes! Some Xtian crap. I hdan't even considered the possibility that they mobilized especially to hit F911 viewers. I would say it makes sense, but putting religious flyers under people's windshield wipers doesn't ever make sense.
posted by scarabic at 2:37 AM on July 1, 2004

Watching Them Squirm...

One keyboard commando’s laughable claim is that Dubya sat dumbfounded like a dazed lamb when he first learned of the attacks because the Secret Service wouldn’t let him leave the classroom where he sat before students at a Florida school.

Unlike too many of these instant Internet experts, I’ve actually worked in a Presidential administration and know a thing or two about how the Secret Service operates and this latest pseudo-excuse fails the smell test. Agents did not have to seal the room because it was sealed before Bush ever set foot on the premises. Agents have the power to forcibly remove the President from a location only if there is a clearly-identified danger and the news that a plane had struck one of the World Trade Center Towers in New York did not rate an “alpha” alert under Secret Service procedures. Until a situation reaches alpha status, the Secret Service continues to answer to the President and his Chief of Staff. Andrew Card gave Bush the news and then watched helplessly as the President of the United States lapsed into a vegative state.

Dubya sat with a dazed look on his face for one reason and one alone: He did not know what to do. White House aides in the back of the room tried desperately to get his attention and urge him to do something decisive but he was so dumb-struck he either did not see them or could not interpret their anxious signals.

Now that Bush’s inaction is out there on the big screen for all to see, the White House apologists, as they have had to do so often, scramble to come up with a plausible excuse for yet another FUBAR. That’s been standard operating procedure at 1600 Pennsylvania since January 20, 2001 and it will remain so until January 20, 2005, or January 20, 2009, depending on the decision of either the voters or the U.S. Supreme Court come November.

posted by y2karl at 8:36 PM on July 1, 2004

"Fundies send out Michael Moore's home adress on mailing list" Send him Chick tracts.
posted by Keyser Soze at 2:48 PM on July 3, 2004

Just been to see this in Louisiana, where the theatre was around 1/4 full. It got good laughs all the way through, and nobody walked out.

Most touching, though, was the older woman who, when we all got to the foyer, was telling people that she couldn't believe what she'd seen.

"I don't go to movies, not for years, but I had free time tonight and I've been hearing a lot about this one. Have you seen that movie sir? I didn't know a thing about it either. You simply *must* go and see it. It's incredible".
posted by bonaldi at 9:33 PM on July 16, 2004

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