Apr 032006
Authors: Megan Schulz

I like to watch movies. I’d take movies over TV any day. I work to keep myself in the know when it comes to Hollywood. But one thing I enjoy watching almost more than movies is movie trailers.

Watching trailers is thrilling for me. My breath quickens as I catch a glimpse of a movie that has the potential to be amazing, before it is commercialized, hits the theaters and turns out to be crap.

So I was intrigued to discover that in the near future, there will be two 9/11 movies hitting theaters. “World Trade Center” starring Nicholas Cage, tells the true story of John McLoughlin and William J. Jimeno, the last two survivors to be rescued from the rubble of Ground Zero.

“United 93” stars a cast of veritable unknowns, chronicling the story of United Flight 93 and its passengers. These incredible passengers thwart the hijackers’ plans and manage to crash the plane in a relatively safe location so bystanders will not be harmed.

I’m torn because I can’t decide whether it is a good idea that these movies are made less than five years after 9/11. These are great stories to tell. After watching a feature on “United 93” I’m also convinced the passengers’ families think a movie is a good idea.

The fact that the producers of “United 93” cast unknown actors also supports the credibility of the movie and the idea that maybe the director, Paul Greengrass, really just wants to tell a story.

When it comes to “World Trade Center,” I have a lack of opinion. I don’t know enough about the movie to like or dislike it.

But in the midst of these epic movies, I can’t help but experience a slight nagging feeling that says, “Something isn’t right.” I didn’t enjoy watching planes crash into the towers on the news, so what makes me think I am going to enjoy the scene when it has potential to become dramatized on a movie screen?

It feels a little bit like Hollywood is trying to capitalize on a tragedy. American patriotism is an easy emotion to toy with. Plus, I’m a skeptic. I’m not entirely convinced that people in the movie industry are guiltless storytellers not the least bit concerned with money. Many of these people adamantly oppose Bush and his policies.

It’s not uncommon for people to want to make money off of tragedy or misfortune. How else do you account for the number of best-selling “drug addict” novels? Another example is the Laci Peterson murder case. Family members on both sides of the trial have certainly capitalized on the event by writing books.

But if the family and friends of survivors feel that making movies is appropriate, I support their wishes. Accordingly, I will watch the movies and bask with my fellow Americans in the short-lived patriotism and unity that is sure to follow.

Megan Schulz is a sophomore technical journalism major. Her column runs every Tuesday in the Collegian.

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

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