On the off chance that this is the first time you’ve heard of this story, or if you simply skimmed a couple of headlines and never either watched or read all of von Trier’s “controversial” pro-Hitler rant, here it is:
The only thing I can tell you is that I thought I was a Jew for a long time and was very happy being a Jew, then later on came Susanne Bier, and suddenly I wasn’t so happy about being a Jew. That was a joke. Sorry. But it turned out that I was not a Jew. If I’d been a Jew, then I would be a second-wave Jew, a kind of a new-wave Jew, but anyway, I really wanted to be a Jew and then I found out that I was really a Nazi, because my family is German. And that also gave me some pleasure. So, I, what can I say? I understand Hitler. I think he did some wrong things but I can see him sitting in his bunker. I’m saying that I think I understand the man. He is not what we could call a good guy, but yeah, I understand much about him and I sympathize with him … But come on! I’m not for the Second World War. And I’m not against Jews. No, not even Susanne Bier. I am very much for them. As much as Israelis are a pain in the ass. How do I get out of this sentence? Okay, I am a Nazi. As for the art, I’m for Speer. Albert Speer I liked. He was also one of God’s best children. He has a talent that … Okay, enough.
Cannes then banned the director, but not before asking him to issue the following apology:
Okay, if you’ve seen The Silence of the Lambs, you probably get the premise. Basically, there’s a theory that there are lessons to be learned from notorious psychopaths like Ted Bundy. And, uh, Hannibal Lecter. Of course, the person conducting the interview has to be pretty skilled … and aware of the potential for mind games from a serial killer on death row with absolutely nothing to lose. (And if you haven’t seen The Silence of the Lambs, by the way, you should—good flick) [Ed. Note: If you haven't seen Silence of the Lambs, you must have been living under a rock for the past twenty years or so].
I’m no social scientist, and I don’t pretend to believe what John Q. Citizen thinks about this, but I’ve lived in prison for a long time now, and I’ve met a lot of men who were motivated to commit violence. Without exception, every one of them was deeply involved in pornography – deeply consumed by the addiction. The F.B.I.’s own study on serial homicide shows that the most common interest among serial killers is pornographers. It’s true.
You know what’s kind of interesting here? Bundy graduated from the University of Washington with a degree in psychology. He might have been a stone cold sociopath, but he was …
Just last week, the Los Angeles Lakers celebrated a hard-fought, emotional, and historic victory against the Boston Celtics for the 2009 – 2010 N.B.A. championship title, and Ron Artest (often marred by controversy) played spectacularly, if you hadn’t watched. Artest performed on the court with an almost-uncharacteristic elegance and control. In the immediate aftermath of the Lakers’ win in Game 7, Ron Artest first thanked his “hood” … and then he thanked his “psychiatrist.”
Much of the professional sports culture in the U.S. is steeped in hyper-masculinity. Even with basketball, a “thug” image has often been perpetuated by the athletes. Within the last decade especially, the integrity of sports has been deeply comprised by their obscene salaries, sometimes-criminally aggressive behavior, and the use of steroids. It’s also apparent that the entertainment corporation quality has brought out some of the worst in professional sports these days.
Yet, it continues. There is no greater example of the hyper-masculine identity crisis of sports than that of Ron Artest. In 2005, Artest initiated the most extreme and dramatic act of said hyper-masculine violence when he instigated the infamous the Indiana Pacers – Detroit Pistons brawl. On televisions throughout the world, eyes watched Artest pummel: a violent demonstration of brute power for the all those watching. Certainly Artest wasn’t the only culprit; indeed, the furious and thoughtless rage of others was engaged as well. Continue reading →