Friday, September 10, 2004

Scene Eh, You Row Pa?

I've seen a grand total of three Cine Europa entries, "Black Meteor" from the Dutch, "Sweet Nightmare" from the Portuguese and "Distant Lights" from the Germans. The verdict? They all suck. This was supposed to showcase the best in European film right? Wrong.

The Cine Europa this year is a political statement. Nevermind the quality of the film, as long as they fit the general themes. Which themes you ask? Europe is a multi-cultural amalgam of nation-states, not exactly a coherent socio-political entity, but one working in harmonious cooperation. Europe is not xenophobic. Look, we welcome black soccer players! Europe does not condone racism. Europe is sympathetic to the immigrant's plight. Europe welcomes skilled, hardy foreigners. Europeans are more and more aware of being in a "union." Europeans are mobile within the EU. They even inter-marry! Europeans are investing in each other's countries. Especially in more economically depressed areas! Europe is being invaded by American culture, look at how crass and "baduy" we've become!

May this year marked European enlargement. 10 new states (central and eastern europe) are now official members of the EU. Europe is now 500 million strong. A huge market, obviously an economic powerhouse that seeks to rival the Yanks. What does this have to do with a film festival you say? Who said politics didn't use culture and culture politics? They are one and the same.

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