Lions for Lambs ... a few thoughts

bumped -- Friday night movie watching after a strange VP nomination today -- cho

"Lions for Lambs" is a haunting movie. There are three separate stories being told that all weave together.

Meryl Streep is (of course) awesome as aging journalist, Janine Roth. Roth has been invited to interview Senator Jasper Irving (Tom Cruise's character). Cruise is devilish as the charming Senator trying to sell the war.

Story two is between Robert Redford, as Political Science professor, Dr. Malley, and a "promising student", Todd Hayes (played by Andrew Garfield). Dr. Malley is trying to convince Todd to pay attention in class and fulfill the potential he has, while Todd has become truly disenchanted with "politics" as a whole.

Malley offers up two former students as examples of "potential" that was wasted, because Arian and Ernest are now serving in the Middle East.

The third segment follows Arian and Ernest in Afghanistan. They are part of a contingent being sent to "take and hold" the high country. As they are flying in, they take fire and Arian is shot and falls out of the helicopter. Ernest jumps after him.

While Ernest and Arian are falling from the helicopter, Senator Jasper is trying to sell this "new strategy" to Janine Roth. While they are struggling to survive on a snowy mountain with the "enemy closing in", Dr. Malley begins telling Todd about them and we find out why they felt compelled to join the military.

While Arian and Ernest are examples of courage and hope, Todd epitomizes the despair that seems to be gripping America. How can you believe in the "basic good" of a political process that is so corrupt? How can you fight, and try and find ways to "fix" something that is so shattered?

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