Saturday, April 30, 2011

Only in The Australian 3

What is it with The Australian and that fine French-Canadian film Incendies?

First, its film reviewer, Evan Williams, just didn't seem to cotton on, despite an abundance of evidence throughout, that its female protagonist, Nawal Marwan, is an Arab Christian. (See my 24/4/11 post Only in The Australian 2)

Now we have another Australian journalist, Michael Bodey, in a story about the film, writing this confounding sentence: "Central to the story is the brutality of Nawal's life under Muslim regimes." (Journey to the battle zone, 27/4/11)

I mean, has actually viewing the film you're reviewing/discussing gone out of fashion at News Limited?

To begin with Nawal doesn't live under Muslim regimes, whatever they are. The film's setting is obviously civil war Lebanon (1975-1990), but if Lebanon is what Bodey means by a Muslim regime, then he knows as much about that country as I do about quantum physics.

And yes, Nawal's life is exceedingly brutal, beginning with the murder of her (obviously Muslim/Christian/whatever Palestinian) lover by her Christian brothers, and her narrow escape from the same fate at the same Christian hands.

Then there's her other narrow escape from an ambush staged by a Christian militia (note the pictures of Jesus and Mary on the stocks of their AK-47s), followed by her payback assassination of a Christian warlord, and finally her incarceration and torture in a Christian prison (modelled on the notorious Lebanese prison/torture chamber at Khiam in south Lebanon operated by Israel's proxy Christian South Lebanon Army (SLA) from 1985 - 2000).

One has to wonder, when it comes to the Middle East, whether the culture over at News Limited is so irredeemably anti-Arab/ Islamophobic that its journalists are simply blind to the bleeding obvious.

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