burn-dir.tom putnam & brenna sanchez

“i just don’t know when we became the enemy-the firefighters, the police, the teachers-people who are trying to make a difference”

they say rome wasn’t burnt in a day. i’ll admit that throughout my life-i have focused very intently on the facts that i’ve cared about, and have let way too many slide to the wayside due to a complete lack of interest (like somehow the thunder making it to the finals in 2012 was news to me a few nights ago).

i will never forget learning in film studies almost a decade ago that “film is either a reflection of society, or a projection of what we want society to be”. i’ve thought a lot about this for a long time. i think the whole fascination with vampires has been about our fear of aging and/or making it ok for hundred-year old men to deflower teenage girls-same difference. and there has been a movement in the last few years to watch shows about scrappy times of the past (game of thrones, hell on wheels, spartacus, etc.) and i think this has to do with our current fascination with empires (hell, even empire or power can be contemporary examples of the same topic) but i’ve always been much more focused on how little we have learned from history, and how it cycles back.

basically-why watch people in manky furs dismantle each other in olde english, when we have access to so many crumbling empires so close to us? the rust belt, isa or any of our indigenous communities, north america is a nightmare that we can’t wake up from, and we don’t have to wait hundreds of years to watch it. i guess the separation factor, or the more pretentious “look how far we’ve become”, or the ever-curious camel back’s breaking straw factor “watch how quickly we can revert to this” makes it more appealing to keep our entertainment in history because acknowledging the present would mean that we would have to do something.

“why wouldn’t you want to do something to help the community you live in?”

“it’s like katrina without the hurricane”

i’d like to pair this doc with charlie leduff’s detroit-an american autopsy
, and shout him out for all the interesting work that he’s done on the topic of crumbling, failing, non-glamourous america. for everyone who quickly brushes off all our southern cousins with the same brush-here is where you can find the true beauty.

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