Anyone catching the television ads for the Dick Cheney-trashing movie "Vice" found a heavy promotion of the surprising six Golden Globe nominations it received from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. The affirmation also became the "news hook" for press interviews with the director and the actors to weaponize it politically.
Sadly for them, only actor Christian Bale won an award, for gaining 40 pounds and talking out of the side of his mouth like the Penguin in a Batman movie. This year's Golden Globes were refreshingly devoid of obnoxious left-wing fulminating — except for Bale. He felt it appropriate to sneer as he accepted his award, "Thank you to Satan, for giving me inspiration on how to play this role." He also joked he will now portray a series of "charisma-free a—holes," possibly Sen. Mitch McConnell. At least it's amusing that Bale won the award for best actor in a musical or comedy. No one should be confused about whether this film is based in reality ... even though the commercials claim it is.
The Hollywood left has convinced itself that somehow Cheney is the lowest form of immoral human slime, a war criminal worse than Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden combined. "Vice" screenwriter and director Adam McKay, a self-described socialist whose filmmaking resume bursts with Will Ferrell comedies like "Anchorman," even placed Cheney above President Trump on the liberal Evil Meter. The death of every man, woman and child in the Iraq War was President George W. Bush and Dick Cheney's fault. "Don't get me wrong, Trump is dispiriting and upsetting and we've essentially shot a drunk orangutan into the office," McKay proclaimed to The Daily Beast. "But it's nowhere near the damage these guys did."
In a new "Six Questions" interview in the back of Time magazine, McKay proclaimed that Cheney became a danger to society, an international menace: "What intrigued me was that he wasn't a sociopathic monster in the beginning. ... Yet somehow that ambition, that American Dream, became something much darker." Time interviewer Eliza Berman raised no objection to this character assassination.
McKay's passionate loathing, alongside his arrogant belief in his own wicked sense of humor, resulted in a mess. Let's face it. This pile of Golden Globe nominations — including one for best picture in a musical or comedy — reeked more of political activism than it did artistic judgment. Time magazine's own film critic, Stephanie Zacharek, denounced it as faux art. "(I)f 'Vice'... really is aimed at adults, why does it treat its audience like idiots?" she asked. "McKay seems to think we can't be trusted to grasp what he sees as Cheney's Machiavellian villainy unless he spells it out in cartoon language. There are no actual cartoons in 'Vice,' but McKay packs in so much figurative Wile E. Coyote anvil dropping that there may as well be."
Who would waste their money on this, except leftists fully immersing themselves in 132 minutes of hate?
Zacharek wished for a movie that "could have been an awesome Christmas gift to Dick Cheney haters everywhere." The movie debuted on Christmas Day. What sicko celebrates the world-redeeming birth of Christ with a hate-Cheney movie?
The movie isn't a box-office flop, like Michael Moore's latest bombs. It has grossed over $30 million on 2,500 screens in its first two weeks, according to Box Office Mojo. But the left can stick a sock in the notion that it is the world's guardian of humanity, unity and love while it's subsidizing this socialist smear canister at the Cineplex.
L. Brent Bozell III is the president of the Media Research Center. Tim Graham is director of media analysis at the Media Research Center and executive editor of the blog NewsBusters.org.