Home > Uncategorized > Diapers, Iraq, and “The Departed”

Diapers, Iraq, and “The Departed”

What’s Up With the Diaper? MSNBC.com’s Alexandra Gekas explores the significance of Lisa Nowak, the astronaut who made Buzz Aldrin spin in his grave by attempting to kidnap a romantic rival, wearing a damn diaper. “The detail caught the eye of many curious readers, but in the aerospace community, it’s not a new concept,” writes Gekas. Well, it’s certainly a new fucking application at least. Yes, astronauts have to wear diapers…in space. Still, informative read and, if you’re like me, you imagined yourself wearing one of these in a spacewalk and it made you go “EWWWWWWWWWWWWW.” No word yet on if John Glen’s diapers are “space age.”

Deputy health minister arrested in U.S.-Iraqi raid An Iraqi Deputy Health Minister was arrested on charges of funneling money to a radical Shiite militia. Perhaps the more interesting aspect of this story – as corrupt and/or questionable individuals serving in Iraqi government was a given and they’ve already found at least one former terrorist serving in the Iraqi administration – is that it was apparently done without informing his superiors.

“Iraqi Health Minister Ali al-Shammari criticized the way forces seized his deputy, calling the raid a humiliating blow to the dignity of the ministry and the official seized.

Al-Shammari said he should have been notified and that he would have cooperated. He asserted that legal channels should have been followed, with the proper papers from justice officials.”

The problem of course is that in a sting operation where the element of surprise and secrecy are of the utmost importance, you can’t exactly go blabbing to everyone to let them know who you’re talking to and when. The more important issue, perhaps, is that it potentially says to the Iraqi people that while they have a democratically elected government that’s in the process of being fully empowered, it’s still completely subject to the whim of the military coalition forces. While this won’t necessarily be the case permanently, that is how it could appear. Perhaps more importantly, this and the other recent discovery of a former terrorist convicted of embassy bombings serving in the government provides another eventuality – the Iraqi people will probably end up electing people to positions we don’t like. If there’s a situation similar to Hamas gaining control of the Palestinian government through democratic means, we’ll have to once again ask if we want a truly democratic process if it means they’re going to elect terrorists and/or officials sympathetic to their cause. Call me cynical, but in my eyes it’s looking more and more like Iraq is a no-win situation in terms of what certain members of the Bush Administration envisioned happening there. There’s something to be said about naivety and democracy being something that becomes a problem when it’s forced into practice rather than it being a gradual process brought about internally, but that’s a rant for another time.

And thank God I’m not the only one who felt this way about “The Departed.” On the ending of the film:

Still, some have lamented the rapid double-crossing and vengeful murders that precede the final flourish. New Yorker film critic David Denby wrote of the quick disposals: “shock gives way to disbelief and even laughter.”

That was literally the reaction McLocks and I had to the ending of the film. Going further, we proposed that instead of an actual rat, a dude wearing a rat costume and delivering a pizza should’ve walked in, stop, and say “I didn’t see NOTHIN’.” Though I’d argue the problems with the film go well beyond the ending, which I’ve written about in this LJ (I’ll look for the link later). The fact that this film is nominated for so many Academy Awards shows that it’s not just the movie-going public that’s completely ignorant. “The Departed” was one awful, awful hackfest, and Scorcese should’ve been ashamed of himself.

More later…

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  1. February 8, 2007 at 4:46 pm

    I hear that so many police officers were killed in the Departed that the north east might be lacking several law enforcement officials. Crime will run amuck!!!

    • February 8, 2007 at 4:54 pm


  2. February 8, 2007 at 5:09 pm

    The movie world is fellating Scorcese now because they’re trying to make up for the fact that Raging Bull lost to Ordinary People and that Goodfellas lost to Dances with Freaking Wolves.

    • February 8, 2007 at 6:06 pm

      Do not bad mouth Kevin Cosner!!

      • February 8, 2007 at 6:28 pm

        Yeah! He’s been great in the same role he’s played thirty times but just in different situations!

      • February 8, 2007 at 6:37 pm

        I’m quite forgiving of Mr. Costner. Hell, I actually watched “For the Love of the Game” and didn’t mind it.

        But there is no way on earth that he deserved Best Director and Best Picture over Goodfellas and Scorcese. Just none at all.

      • February 8, 2007 at 7:15 pm

        As much as I rag on him, I think I’m one of the few people I know who actually really, really liked “Dances With Wolves.” Sure, there was a lot of excess baggage with it, but I thought it was a gorgeous film and I’m a sucker for a decent Western.

        As for winning over “Goodfellas,” though? Yeah…I’d agree. I don’t view it as the misdemeanor other people view it as, but “Goodfellas” was definitely the better film and Scorcese was hands down the better director with that film. Costner’s weakness was always that he’s WAY too fucking enamored with scenery.

    • February 8, 2007 at 6:28 pm

      Same thing they did with “Gangs of New York.” Which, of the two films, I’d say was better, yet I feel like “The Departed” will actually win it for him. Sad.

      • February 8, 2007 at 6:39 pm

        I kind of felt like Gangs was nominated simply because it was too big not to be nominated, but I wasn’t at all surprised when it didn’t win. It just felt too desperate of an attempt to win an Oscar, and they tend to frown on desperation it seems.

        This year he’s helped by the fact there is really no other great movie. It feels a bit like that one year where all the little independent films were up for best picture (Fargo, English Patient, Shine, Secrets & Lies, etc.).

      • February 8, 2007 at 7:13 pm

        Oh no, I totally agree. I was just saying that though neither would deserve an Oscar, of the two I’d give the nod to “Gangs” over the fucking “Departed.” “Gangs” was a lazy epic film; “Departed” was more like “DeGarbage” (GET IT?!)

        As far as the other nominees, I’d tend to agree. I liked “Little Miss Sunshine” quite a bit, though I don’t know if I like it enough to be comfortable calling it the Academy Award Winner for Best Picture. Actually, I’m surprised a movie that was that light in tone (even with some darker humor) was nominated.

        I keep hearing “The Queen” was very, very good, but haven’t seen it. Hopefully that will prove out worthy.

      • February 8, 2007 at 8:09 pm

        “This year he’s helped by the fact there is really no other great movie.”
        I can name two, right off the top of my head:
        The Descent and Pan’s Labyrinth.

      • February 8, 2007 at 8:40 pm

        I should have phrased that more precisely. “There is no other movie universally acclaimed as great by a large proportion of both critics and moviegoers this year.”

      • February 8, 2007 at 9:07 pm

        We’ll have to agree to disagree about “Pan’s Labyrinth.” Blog forthcoming…at some point this weekend.

      • February 8, 2007 at 9:37 pm

        I had been all psyched up to see it until I saw the way it got treated on P-Boink. “15 minutes of great fantasy, 2 hours and 45 minutes of hispanic people shooting at each other in the woods.”

      • February 8, 2007 at 10:03 pm

        Know what’s amazing? It literally seemed like it was three hours long, but it was in actuality a hair under two.

        That’s a pretty accurate assessment, though. But going back to my previous statement, the biggest problem with the film was the pacing. Boy howdy, was the pacing ever bad for this film.

      • February 9, 2007 at 7:19 pm


      • February 8, 2007 at 10:12 pm

        Colour me interested. My only problem with the film was the little girl. Her voice acting was fine, but her face seemed pretty much static throughout the entire thing.

      • February 9, 2007 at 7:19 pm

        See last night’s entry.

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