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Old 10-18-2004, 07:22 AM   #1
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The Motorcycle Diaries

Just saw it--a really terrific movie. Anyone else seen it?

SD
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Old 10-18-2004, 08:15 AM   #2
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I kinda want to see it since we just studied Che in Latin American Politics and my bro's friend is a relative of his (grandson or great-nephew I think, his last name is also Guevara).
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Old 10-18-2004, 08:31 AM   #3
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YES!
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Old 10-18-2004, 08:36 AM   #4
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heard it's a good flick.
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Old 10-18-2004, 08:45 AM   #5
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I really wanted to see it, but missed it when it was in theatres.
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Old 10-18-2004, 09:17 AM   #6
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Nope haven't seen it but I do love Gael Garcia Bernal
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Old 10-18-2004, 10:33 AM   #7
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He was awesome in Y Tu Mama Tambien. I've only heard good things about this movie, plus I just bought a Che hat, so I kinda feel obliged to learn a bit more about him
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Old 10-18-2004, 10:40 AM   #8
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i am looking forward to seeing it.

isn't it ironic how che's image is plastered on all kinds of consumer products these days?
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Old 10-18-2004, 10:48 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by Se7en
i am looking forward to seeing it.

isn't it ironic how che's image is plastered on all kinds of consumer products these days?
It sure it. I have to wonder what he'd think of that. LOL. He might love it, who knows?


MG, Gael is... I mean... His acting is really sublime, too. I physically *hurt* for him during one of the astmatic seizure scenes. (Who knew El Comandante was astmatic?)

Anyway, great movie. On another track, though, my friend who I saw it with asked me on the way out: would the world have been a better place if he'd stayed a doctor and not taken up revolutionary struggle. I had to answer yes.

SD

Meggie--it just came out in theatres, I believe ????
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Old 10-18-2004, 12:18 PM   #10
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Why is Che so idolized? He was nothing but a murderous thug who thought Stalin was not Marxist enough. One does not have to be a McCarthyite or a member of the John Birch Society to say that Che's actions were much worse than those he was fighting. He did absolutely nothing for the dispossessed he was fighting for except maybe get them killed (when there were peasants fighting for him). Cuba is certainly worse off because of his influence what with the concentration camps he helped start. Wearing Che on a shirt is akin to wearing Goebbels or Stalin. What also amazes me is that many leftists (or collegiate leftists) who are supposedly anti war put Che on a pedestal. Che was certainly not anti-war because he fomented bloodshed wherever he went.
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Old 10-18-2004, 12:58 PM   #11
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Originally posted by Ft. Worth Frog
Why is Che so idolized?
people like to say 'che'. people like t shirts that say 'che'.
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Old 10-18-2004, 01:15 PM   #12
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I've often wondered why Michael Collins isn't sold on merchandise.

He was just as photogenic.
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Old 10-18-2004, 01:52 PM   #13
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Honestly, I couldn't care less that the story is attached to Che. In that respect, I think the film was successful with its intentions (me, xeidon.com, 2004).
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Old 10-18-2004, 04:28 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by Ft. Worth Frog
Why is Che so idolized? He was nothing but a murderous thug who thought Stalin was not Marxist enough.
Che was a man of his time - no better and no worse than that. In the context of the revolutions in South and Latin America as well as the Caribbean, he was a man of his time, and played a major role. His last words are thought to have been "shoot coward, you are only killing a man" and it illustrates very well what he thought of the world he lived in. He was lucky to have been born in a time in which he belonged and whose symbol he became later on.

When I was in Cuba, a guy in our travel group asked a Cuban man why Che meant so much to them. He said that it's because Cuban people saw Che as a man who owed them absolutely nothing, and followed only his own principles (wrong or right) to the end, and gave up almost everything for Cuba. A man who was not a Cuban made a huge personal sacrifice, when he had no real reason to do so. I am not sure if the perspective is correct or not - but it is their perspective and I respect it.

I did see the movie several weeks ago, I guess, and thought it was very well done.
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Old 10-18-2004, 04:42 PM   #15
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i'm excited to see this film, if only the local theatre would show it...
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Old 10-18-2004, 05:49 PM   #16
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Man of his time or not, Che is a (the word rhymes with stunt) and nothing will change my opinion on the matter.
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Old 10-18-2004, 06:38 PM   #17
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Not even the possibility of an open mind? That's sad. Not sad, calling you names, but sad as in

Very interesting comparison to Michael Collins. They so seem to be similar figures. Hmmm. Thanks for that!

I think Che's idealized for a lot of reasons, a few of them valid, some of them not. He certain had the courage of his convictions and I have to believe that he believed he was fighting for the downtrodden, the poor, etc. I that sense, I share his ideals. Frankly I think his sense of moral outrage rings true.

On the other hand, we're also talking about a man who had people executed on behalf of Castro. How he reconciled that with the beautiful ideals he professed, or what it was that made him think Castro had ANYthing to do with human dignity, freedom or justice is beyond baffling to me. Was he that stupid? That blinded by Castro's rhetoric? Carried away by revolutionary zeal? Who knows? But I sure can't applaud. Hell no!

John Lennon put it beautifully:

You say you want a revoltuion
well you know, we all want to change to world....
but if you want money for people with minds that hate
all I can tell you is, brother, you'll have to wait

SD
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Old 10-18-2004, 06:47 PM   #18
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Originally posted by Sherry Darling
That blinded by Castro's rhetoric?
Perhaps in the beginning, but Castro is the main reason Che left Cuba as the two had a number of differences once Castro rose to power.

I have the goodbye letter Che wrote to Castro (you can buy copies of it in Cuba - beautiful country to visit, btw). He did have a way with words. In the letter, you can tell he had a great respect for Castro, but also took great care to distance himself from Cuba, because of the inner struggles that took place then and the fact that it was Castro who essentially forced him out when Che became a political liability.

Quote:
Habana
Year of Agriculture

Fidel:

At this moment I remember many things - when I met you in Maria Antonia's house, when you suggested me coming, all the tension involved in the preparations.

One day they asked who should be notified in case of death, and the real possibility of that fact affected all. Later we knew that it was true, that in revolution one wins or dies (if it is a real one). Many comrades fell along the way to victory.

Today everything is less dramatic because we are more mature. But the fact is repeated I feel that I have fulfilled the part of my duty that tied me to the Cuban Revolution in its territory, and I say good-bye to you, the Comrades, your people, who are already mine.

I formally renounce my position in the National Leadership of the Party, my post as Minister, my rank of Major, and my Cuban citizenship. Nothing legal binds me to Cuba. The only ties are of another nature; those which cannot be broken as appointments can.

Recalling my past life, I believe I have worked with sufficient honor and dedication to consolidate the revolutionary triumph. My only serious failing was not having confided more in you from the first moment in the Sierra Maestra, and not having understood quickly enough your qualities as a leader and a revolutionary.

I have lived magnificent days and I felt at your side the pride of belonging to our people in the brilliant yet sad days of the Caribbean Crisis.

Few times has a statesman been more brilliant than you in those days. I am also proud of having followed you without hesitation, identifying myself with your way of thinking and of appraising dangers and principles.

Other nations of the world call for my modest efforts. I can do that which is denied you because of your responsibility at the head of Cuba, and the time has come for us to part.

I want it known that I do it with mixed feelings of joy and sorrow: I leave here the purest of my hopes as a builder, and the dearest of those I love. And I leave people that received me as a son. That wounds me deeply. I carry to new battlefronts the faith that you taught me, the revolutionary spirit of my people, the feeling of fulfilling the most sacred of duties: to fight against imperialism wherever I may be. This comforts and heals the deepest wounds.

I state once more that I free Cuba from any responsibility, except that which stems from its example. If my final hour finds me under other skies, my last thought will be of this peope and especially of you. I am thankful for your teaching, your example, and I will try to be faithful to the final consequence of my acts. I have always been identified with the foreign policy of our Revolution, and I will continue to be. Wherever I am, I will feel the responsibility of being a Cuban revolutionary and as such I shall behave. I am not sorry that I leave my children and my wife nothing material. I am happy it is that way. I ask nothing for them, as I know the State will provide enough for their expenses and education.

I would like to say much to you and to our people, but I feel it is not necessary. Words cannot express what I would want them to, and I don't think it's worthwhile to banter phrases.

Onward to victory always. Patria o Muerte!

I embrace you with all my revolutionary fervor,

Che

I think SD is right when she says he got carried away with revolutionary zeal. There are admirable things he believed in, and there are terrible things he also did. So, as I said, he is a man of his time and his life is best understood in that revolutionary context.
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Old 10-18-2004, 07:40 PM   #19
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IMHO, it is dangerous to so flippantly excuse Che for his deeds. So what if he believed he was helpig the poor? His deeds did not match up with his words so he simply falls into the same category as the other miserable Commuists who have much more blood on their hands than their enemies-Lenin, Stalin, Mao, etc. Now I know that no one in here is saying that it was ok for Che to do it, but why is Che and other Communists allowed off the hook so easily? Bush allows the execution of murders in Texas and is roasted while Che is responsible in some way or other for the tragic bloodshed in Latin America for a couple of decades and gets a slap on the wrist. There does not appear to be any consistency here.

Anyway, for more info on Che and the misdeeds of his fellow Communists I recommend the Black Book of Communism printed by Harvard University Press and not some fanatical fascist press as some might imagine. It is a scholarly look at the horrible crimes and repression of Communist regimes in the 20th century. It also asks why intellectuals in academia are so prone to excuse and overlook the crimes of Communists while only focusing on the outrages of fascism. Though it is a bit lengthy (800 or so pages), it is divided into regions with much of the focus on the USSR and China. There are also chapters on Latin America, Africa, and the rest of Asia. A great read for those interested.
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Old 10-19-2004, 12:00 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by Sherry Darling


Meggie--it just came out in theatres, I believe ????
It came out in the UK in September (I think...maybe even late August), and was in theatres until just recently. For some reason, it's one of those rare films that the UK gets before the US. Usually we get movies in theatres here about the time they're released on DVD in the US.
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