Having turned the cinema into the seventh art paved the way for the use of sex and of most daring erotic in many of its productions, and thus Brigitte Bardot acquired the same status as Venus de Milo, with no differences to be barred.
The above trump card didn´t even need a sleeve to hide it in and thus Hollywood launched an absolute and radical change of values. There was an urgent need to decriminalize and later promote adultery, indiscriminate fornication, prostitution, homosexuality, incest, organized crime and last but not least brutal colonialism. It wasn’t easy, but on this occasion Hollywood proved to be patient and tenacious in the face of inertia imposed by religious superstition prevailing in Western societies since times immemorial, and in the face of the Vatican reluctant to die beheaded as if another Thomas More (beatified in 1886 and canonized in 1935 by Pope Pius XI). This and other similar facts made it clear that there has always been a heroic humanism and a petty humanism, and that the latter is the one that has prevailed throughout history.
The self-imposed task was indeed huge and needed the technical and ideological support of all available filmmakers both native and foreign Hollywood could get.
Both incest and fornication were hard nuts to crack, the former slightly more than the latter. It was first necessary to beautify their ugliness by showing the exquisite aesthetic which underlies both of them and which might have been overlooked until then. The person in charge of discovering what had been unnoticed and of presenting it to the general public was Bernardo Bertolucci, whose two renowned films dealt with the hitherto taboo themes, “The Last Tango in Paris” (1972) and “Luna” (1979). Fornication and incest were sanctified. Moreover, they represented forms of life that, at least for the moment, only the highest elites could assume. As aberrant as it might seem at first by that time Bertolucci had already been classified as a major god on the New Olympus that the West was erecting, and Marlon Brando as the brightest star of the celestial pantheon. Obviously, neither one nor the other could have been wrong.
In the 60s it was Jean-Luc Godard who worked the hardest, giving us “A bout de soufflé” (1959); “Pierrot le fou” and “Alphaville” (1965), a whole series of films that could be classified as tragicomedies dipped in the batter of surrealism and of certain existential philosophy that he and his colleagues at the magazine “Cahiers de cinéma” called Nouvelle Vague. We find there François Truffaut, Claude Chabrol and several others, all of them fascinated by the grotesque, by things evil as something more interesting than things good, especially if we bear in mind that there is nothing awaiting us after death.
In the 80s the relay baton was grasped by Pedro Almodóvar, best director at the Cannes Film Festival, 1999 and Oscar for best screenplay, 2000, among other awards and nominations. Very quickly he managed to convince the whole world that there was no aesthetic more sublime than having AIDS, a pansy for a brother, a half-whore mother and a heroin-shooting-father. Vice, as poet Antonio Machado predicted, defeated virtue and became an object of envy. That recipe was complete with a few dashes of ambiguous feminist apology, plus rights for the pariah and a touch of leftism, generously seasoned with the irresistible cry –enough is enough!
To the productions of the Nouvelle Vague we could add dramas of the Swedish director Ingmar Bergman, in which humanism was exasperatingly absolute and in which vulgar men and women were trying to understand their miseries, failures and impotence. In a word, the tragedies of a man turned a dwarf, now a condition within everyone’s reach.
No less influential was the work of the late Soviet director, Andrei Arsenyevich Tarkovsky. In his film “Solaris” (1971), based on the novel by Polish writer Stanislaw Lem, he contemplates the possibility of a cosmic consciousness capable of incarnating our most intimate secrets, memories and fears. Within the purest humanism, both the novel and the film interpret man’s reality as a series of frustrations in the face of a universe too complicated to be understood by the deficient cognitive capacities that operate in the human being.
In this entire muddle there is something of an efficient collateral opacity. As can be seen from these sketchy notes, the change of values was cooked in Europe –the Italian, the Spanish, the French, the Swedish, the Russian… soon to be confirmed in the United States. With the input coming from the European side of the Atlantic, it might be safe to say that it is Europe which in fact is the American deep state.
This input also reached Islamic countries, with the Egyptian cinematography having transformed it into the lowest-quality productions ever made. Also the Ottoman sultans felt increasingly comfortable in this underworld and gradually lost sight of the source of their immense power. They forgot the Qur-anic message carrying wise admonitions: do not sit with Jews or Christians, nor take them for allies, because they will not accept you until you faithfully follow their mil-lah, their way of life, and assume their values. But they sat with them, they took them for allies, they asked for loans, they imitated them, and in this way they finally found out that they had lost the Arabic language, but did not acquire the knowledge of Latin. They lost everything and did not leave their subjects any other legacy than the past glory. Always the same fascination, the enchanting Sirens’ song. Odysseus at least took the precaution of tying himself to the mast of his ship, but few ever think of precautions. Most succumb to temptation and fall into the stormy sea of fictions, nonexistent sirens and mirages. When it’s too late, no reflection is of any good, the merciless sea takes its toll. The worst part of the case is that nobody learns from mistakes and thus the collective historical memory is of little use. Erdogan can confirm it. He has intended to return Turkey to the Ottoman glory and was almost forced to do without the Sublime Porte.
However, the most arduous task Hollywood has had yet to face, as well as the deep state in general has been to justify their brutal colonialism and redeem its protagonists once and for all. It looked like an impossible task, but time works wonders.
The never-ending contradictions of European politics and thought deposited in the Western psyche a keen impassivity in the face of events. In his work “Utopia” Thomas More advocated a pagan and communist society in which all its public institutions, as well as its norms of conduct, were governed by reason. At first sight it does not seem reasonable for paganism to be considered the best source of conduct rules in any given society. In “Utopia” More analyzed topics such as the science of criminology, state control of education, religious pluralism, divorce, euthanasia and women’s rights. However, when the moment of truth arrived, he preferred martyrdom rather than support the dissolution of Henry VIII’s marriage to Catherine of Aragon. Undoubtedly, it was an undercover coup d’état. More, Erasmus and Luther represented a new proposal, a new world order, that of humanism. We should bear in mind that the humanist movement does not advocate so much for an atheist society as for a society in constant rebellion. Humanists do not deny Allah’s existence, but considers that man can do better than He does. The absurdity of such a proposition borders on the absolute. However, humanism justifies it by claiming that if man –and what men better than humanists themselves– took charge of creation, there would be no wars, hunger, earthquakes, tornadoes, tsunamis, gangs or a host of other poisonous elements that act with impunity in the universe. The ignorance that manifests itself in the charges imputed to the deity is not binding on its proponents, but on the masses who follow them blindly, unaware of where exactly they are led and incapable of any analysis which would alert them to the ontological danger that the humanist proposal supposes. The elites know what they want. What they want is the establishment of paradise here on earth, immortality and endless dominion. And they also know that such an occurrence is entirely impossible. Paradise demands another land, another heaven and another nafs, that is independent living entity. To recognize this fact would involve drastic alteration of their political, economic and social programs, a return to the divine orbit and simultaneous rejection of the technological system which implies roboticization of masses, accumulation of planet’s wealth and military power in their hands as well as continuous manipulation of values. Nothing is further from their intention –we have to climb up to heaven and dethrone the Supreme King.
Contradiction after contradiction, incongruity after incongruity, falsification of the facts after falsification made the masses stop worrying about the truth. They say: “It is normal for politicians to cheat; it is normal for them to steal, to lie, to commit adultery… That’s life and such is man.” And they keep watching movies in which judges are for sale, politicians run drug cartels, priests ally with demons and in which other excesses too numerous to mention take place. However, brutal colonialism still prevented them from having a clear conscience. They had to be convinced that it was necessary; that it was the best option.
The idea was expressed convincingly by Machiavelli through his “reason of state” maxim: there are things that cannot be said. They must remain secret, because they belong to the realm of national security. Sometimes you have to kill, betray commitments, overthrow the leaders who do not follow rational arguments of the elites. The masses accepted the reason of state, but the brutal colonialism continued being a religious, political and moral scandal. The reinforcement came from an innocent saying which goes “prevention is better than cure”. That was the key. Colonialism was the necessary means to avoid many possible evils. It was more than understandable that England feared an invasion by Bangladesh or by the powerful eighteenth century India. In the same way, France felt threatened by the aggressive republic of Upper Volta, later called Burkina Faso. Belgium lived its worst nightmares thinking of a surprise attack by the Congo. The same unease was felt by Denmark in face of the possible takeover by Ghana. Confronted with that situation of imminent danger, Europe chose to protect itself, and thus avoid having to heal the wounds. Everybody agreed that in such case we cannot talk about colonialism –it has never existed. Not even on the part of the United States. The suggestions of Samuel Huntington, John Choon Yoo (Minister of Justice under Bush Jr.) and Robert J. Delahunty (legal counsellor in the Department of Justice in the same administration) served as the basis which helped avoid major consequences of the disease called Iraq or Afghanistan.
Those ideological props required the addition of euphemisms with which to explain the final result –it must be admitted that there has been an error in calculation. This semantic infamy justified extermination of 5 million Iraqis. However, in this case, Hollywood was at its wits’ end as to how to present in their productions U.S. heroism in the face of Iraqi disorder. The reality was so atrocious that it even silenced the made-in-Hollywood cynicism.