Don’t look now, but some guy named Matthew Michael Carnahan has split his loyalties and penned the most unintentionally revealing pair of Iraq War films to date—if by revealing we mean self-incriminating. The first, the abhorrent The Kingdom, portrays America’s role in the Middle East as unobstructed spectacle, a last gasp salvaging of packaged shock and awe that for many Americans must evoke either wistful memories of the first term Bush Administration’s arrogant first-term belief in indestructible vengeance or perhaps a desperate denial of its vanishing formidability. The second, the Robert Redford–directed Lions for Lambs, plays as mea culpa, substituting static talking points blather for jerky-cam gunplay. Softly self-righteous and at least two years behind the times, Lions for Lambs seeks to instruct its viewers on the total failure of the system to prevent the disaster in Iraq and Afghanistan, from neocon chicken hawking to media complacency to military vulnerability, but instead merely reiterates the weak-willed posturing of the mainstream left.
Click here to read the rest of Michael Joshua Rowin’s review of Lions for Lambs.