Next, Stone told the audience that his Showtime documentary series was the “toughest project” he has undertaken, since it is difficult to unravel the myths about the United States. Given, as I have shown in many different venues, that his entire series is one big myth — or, more accurately, one big lie – it most likely is a task that proved very difficult for him to accomplish.
Moreover, Stone, who has made his share of very violent films, was ironically rebuked by Hong Kong director Johnnie To in a panel on “How Does Film Have its Influence on Real Life?” The article tells us that To’s own films contain “a liberal dose of violence.” So director To told Stone that “movies are not textbooks or teaching tools,” and that everyone has their “own opinions.” I have not seen any of To’s movies, but coming from fairly liberal Hong Kong, To probably is not too favorable to the old doctrine of “socialist realism” or didactic films now favored by Stone. Hence, he argued with Stone, “movie violence will not remove violence in the real world.”
But perhaps not all is lost. Stone was sorry, he told the audience, that his film Wall Street has been misunderstood, and that the character Gordon Gekko, played by Michael Douglas, has now become a hero in America because he believed that “greed is good.” Now, Stone bemoaned, those values “have become the norm.” Most Americans would strongly disagree. The American people, as they have shown every time a disaster strikes, have responded forcefully with aid, money, and their own bodies to help people in times of crisis. The norm for average Americans, of whom Oliver Stone knows very few, is the opposite of the kind of greed the people he hangs out with regularly display. But the corrupt government of China, where greed, rapacious behavior, and horrors galore are displayed by the rich apparatchiks, is more than happy to have Stone deflect its own citizen’s attention from the reality of life in China and instead have them angry at the United States.
One thing is certain. Oliver Stone will receive his Outstanding Artistic Achievement award from Communist China, and will still be able to hold a title more appropriate — the Number One Useful Idiot living in the United States.