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Klavan On The Culture

The Arroyo—Breaking the Left’s Monopoly on the Arts

February 10th, 2014 - 4:59 pm

Jeremy, along with our mutual friend Bill Whittle, created Declaration Entertainment, a do-it-yourself movie studio that not only produced many of Bill’s always-hard-hitting videos, but also solicited the donations of “citizen producers,” in hopes of funding a feature film. I remember Bill explaining this idea to me in a restaurant parking lot one night after a dinner with Andrew Breitbart. I said something like, “Uh… good idea, Bill,” in a strained, squeaky voice, all the while hoping Bill was sober enough to drive home. Because anyone who knows anything about making movies knows the Declaration idea was absolutely insane. The fact that it actually worked is either testimony to Jeremy’s guts and determination — or to the fact that he’s like that villain in those Swedish thrillers who doesn’t know when he’s in pain!

Indeed Declaration has now been folded into BillWhittle.com. But before it closed, it did manage to fund the production of Jeremy’s modern western The Arroyo.

The Arroyo is really an amazing accomplishment. Brought into being on a micro budget, it’s a feature quality film. And to label it conservative would be limiting and unfair. It’s only conservative in the sense that it doesn’t lie about its subject. It tells the story of a rancher on the border who gets fed up with the heartless Mexican cartels using illegals to smuggle drugs across his land. Ignored by local law enforcement and deserted by our corrupt and hapless federal government, the hero takes a stand alone — and finds himself in a world of trouble.

Compare this movie to the dishonest propaganda piece Machete, which depicted Americans as bigots deserving of attack by a violent Mexican avenger. The Arroyo doesn’t display a trace of bigotry or nativism but only tells an exciting tale while depicting the border situation as, in fact, it is. Its hero (played by singer Kenny Maines) is stalwart but fallible. Its villain is incredibly villainous but real. (Maybe too real. Actor David Armendariz offered to beat up an innocent old man as an audition!) And its situations are, as they say, torn from the headlines. The leftist Machete had no trouble corralling a top-flight cast and getting a wide release, complete with upcoming sequel. Jeremy, on the other hand, basically had to pull The Arroyo out of the ground by main strength. And he did, delivering steady writing, good direction and strong performances from an unknown cast (which, by the way, is extremely difficult to do). There’s also a top-notch score by John Campbell and some great songs. It also inspired this beautiful piece by Texas songwriter Cary C. Banks.

Get a copy of The Arroyo. This is a very hopeful sign. More to come.

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All Comments   (17)
All Comments   (17)
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Amazon.com only lists one copy, but has many. It is a film worth watching. It is low budget, but the story is first rate. Buy and share.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
4k cameras have dropped to under $2,000. This can only be good for conservative movies.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
I went on over to Amazon, and... they will not send to Canada! Curses!!!
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
The movie is only released to USA territory only. Probably a copyright thing.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
I'm doing my part. See here: http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/the-marscher-lords-brotherhood-or-death/x/5146664
Also here: http://www.marscherlordsfilm.com
My observation is nobody on the right wants to put $$ into entertainment. They talk a good game, but don't follow through.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
Can't wait to see this. More movies need to be made like this times ten.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
We'll buy it on iTunes as soon as it's out. Give us a shout out so we know when. What a great trailer!
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
It is purchasable on amazon.com. Probably won't get to iTunes.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
You had to post the trailer with your article. I wind up ordering the only copy on Amazon right now. Ding Dang It!
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
How about a movie repudiating homosexual marriage or even slightly suggesting that homosexual activity is less than ideal? That would indeed be a somewhat conservative movie.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
I will be glad to review any pieces that are produced by anybody in this emerging counterculture. Movies, short stories, etc anything. My site is at http://www.glitternight.com

For a sample: http://glitternight.com/2014/01/04/the-most-controversial-independent-movies-of-2013/
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
Too bad - can't purchase it from Germany via amazon.com. Seems to be shipped domestic only.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
Same problem. If anybody knows if it's possible to buy it from somewhere when one lives in Europe, please tell. Region code would not be a problem.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
I understand it's going on iTunes. It's the only way I get to see movies, here in Israel.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
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