First, is everyone paying attention?
OK...I was reading an article online just a little while ago. I've moved on and I don't feel like going back and finding it so I can provide the link. Deal with it, fuckers. I'll just describe it to you instead.
So this article was about the most historically inaccurate movies that are based upon true events. Movies like Rudy, The Hurricane and Victory. All decent films, by the way. All come equipped with the tagline "based on true events" and all steer wildly clear of what actually happened in those events.
I came away from reading that article with a question. Do we really care? Are we really caring about this? I mean it's not as if the tagline reads "an exact replica of true events that really happened exactly the way we portray them in this very true-to-life film...swear to God!" It's a movie! If it wasn't much, much more interesting than actual life than we wouldn't pay $11.50 to watch it in a dark room with 350 strangers.
I say that, but then I'm guilty of checking every "based on true events" movie out on IMDB and other sites. Checking to see what was real and what was embellished. Then I tell my friends all about the differences while feeling like a superior sonofabitch. That's how I roll.
I just did it tonight. Right before I read that article, I watched a movie called Heavens Falls. It was based on the re-trial of nine black men who were convicted of raping two white women in Scottsboro, Alabama back in 1931. The trial and re-trials may have been the basis for the book "To Kill a Mockingbird" or so I've read. Harper Lee denies this, by the way.
This one seems to stray closer to the truth than most Hollywood true-tales. Maybe because it doesn't need any embellishment. I'm sure there are folks who are still convinced that these men were guilty. Maybe they were. The facts, however, seem to indicate that they weren't. Most of the men were eventually released or pardoned. The ones that were still alive, anyway. That says a lot. Plus one of the women came forward in the second round of trials and admitted that she wasn't raped by any of the men. Ruby Bates apparently spent the rest of her life working with the men's defense teams to set them free.
It's a sad tale of racism and deep-seated ideology. A tale that doesn't need a Hollywood script.