Monday, February 13, 2017

ALT-RIGHT AGENDA - Steve Bannon's Documentaries aka Propaganda

"Inside Steve Bannon's 'weaponized' political documentaries" PBS NewsHour 2/9/2017


SUMMARY:  Steve Bannon, chief strategist to President Trump, has also worked extensively in the film world, including writing and directing documentaries on the global financial crisis, alleged corruption in the Clinton Foundation, and what he sees as the rise of a violent and radical Islam.  Jeffrey Brown speaks with he Washington Post's Ann Hornaday and Matea Gold on Bannon's past work.

JEFFREY BROWN (NewsHour):  He is chief strategist to President Trump, close at hand as policy is made and decisions come from the White House, the President even recently appointing him to a seat on the National Security Council, a controversial decision.

Stephen Bannon has quickly gained so much of a reputation as an influential behind-the-scenes string-puller that “Saturday Night Live” portrayed him as the Grim Reaper in a recent skit.

ALEC BALDWIN, Actor:  Send in Steve Bannon.


JEFFREY BROWN:  Bannon was well-known previously as chairman of Breitbart News, the right-wing news organization, that Bannon himself once called the platform of the alt-right, a fringe conservative group that mixes populism, white nationalism and racism.

But he's also worked extensively in the film world, as executive producer on two traditional dramas, including “The Indian Runner,” Sean Penn's directorial debut, and as producer, writer and director of political documentaries often released during election cycles.

Among his film topics, the global financial crisis in 2010's “Generation Zero,” Sarah Palin, featured in “The Undefeated” in 2011, more recently, 2016's “Clinton Cash” about alleged corruption in the Clinton Foundation, and also last year Torchbearer,” about an America turning from God, and the concurrent rise of a violent and radical Islam.

Reporters at The Washington Post have been looking at Stephen Bannon's work in films and how they may inform his role as the President's right-hand man.

Ann Hornaday is a film critic for The Post.  Matea Gold covers politics.

Welcome, both of you.

MATEA GOLD, The Washington Post:  Great to be here.

JEFFREY BROWN:  Ann, give us first an overview of themes, style, approach that emerge when you look at the films.

ANN HORNADAY, Film Critic, The Washington Post:  Well, Bannon has really come into his own as mostly a documentary maker.

He has made and produced fiction films in the past, but it's really his documentaries that get the most attention.  And often they have political themes.  He has a few sort of canards and villains that he returns to.  He doesn't like the Clintons very much.  He doesn't like any political elite very much.

He rails against the sort of permanent political class.  He sees — the films often predict the world in very Manichaean terms, apocalyptic terms.

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