Always like this.
Let me start off by saying that complaining about Harvey Weinstein being an insufferable prick (to paraphrase Nate) is trite, cliche', and done by now. We all know that even though Miramax has put out oodles of quality films, as head honcho he's been schmuck numero uno for many, many years now. There's absolutely nothing new to say about the fella, so let's all cease speaking ill of the man.
After this post.
Via ceerock, I came across a letter that Weinstein wrote to Errol Morris back in 1988 about The Thin Blue Line. Saying that the letter was appalling is like saying Jesus got a little roughed up in The Passion; it's the understatement of the year. And remember, this isn't the Harvey Weinstein post-Pulp, when he was a Master Of The Universe. This is circa 1988, when 4 out of 5 dentists surveyed would have no clue what Miramax was. He's like a walking cautionary tale, if he didn't exist, we'd have to create him. Indie filmmakers can tell their children "You better be good, or Harvey Weinstein's going to chop twenty minutes out of your first movie."
Okay, let me jump off the soapbox now and onto a slightly shorter one. Errol Morris is one of the finest documentarians (is that a word?) of our time, and we all know who the better man in that l'il scuffle was. 2003 was arguably the best year ever for documentaries (Spellbound, Stevie, Friedmans, OT, yadda yadda), and Errol Morris made The Fog Of War, which was the finest documentary out there. Art, it was. It took a guy, Robert McNamara, who I was not a fan of beforehand, and made me empathize with the guy. Notice, I said empathize, not forgive, before I start getting napalm in the mail. If you haven't seen it yet, I highly recommend you rent it when it comes out May 11.
And to do my part in helping spread the gospel learned by Robert McNamara, here's the list of 11 lessons. Learn it. Love it. Live it.
1. Empathize with your enemy.
2. Rationality will not save us.
3. There's something beyond one's self.
4. Maximize efficiency.
5. Proportionality should be a guideline in war.
6. Get the data.
7. Belief and seeing are both often wrong.
8. Be prepared to re-examine your reasoning.
9. In order to do good you may have to engage in evil.
10. Never say never.
11. You can't change human nature.
posted by drew on 3/19/2004
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