10 Movies About Freedom of Expression Hollywood Should Rewatch ASAP


On Wednesday, the powers that be at Sony officially pulled the plug on The Interview, after hackers behind the company’s unprecedented hacking scandal threatened to unleash a September 11th-like terrorism scheme if the film was released as scheduled.

The Interview was supposed to be a dumb movie starring James Franco and Seth Rogen, in which the two conclude their adventures in North Korea by blowing up the country’s man-child leader, Kim Jong-Un. This was supposed to be a movie no one was particularly interested in discussing, because it frankly sounded terrible. It should have marched on to its dumb release on Christmas Day, but alas, Sony capitulated to what were most likely empty threats. Paramount went even further by barring theaters from showing “Team America.

If movies have taught us anything over the years, it is that when someone tells you not to express yourself creatively, you tell them to fuck off, and dance your little heart out. Standing up to the forces of artistic oppression and censorship is the main lesson of literally every single film Hollywood has ever made.

With that in mind, here are 10 movies Hollywood should rewatch:

1. Footloose

Threat: Don’t dance.

Resolution: Fuck ’em. Dance.

2. Pleasantville

Threat: Don’t paint.

Resolution: Fuck ’em. Paint.

3. Hamlet 2

Threat: Don’t do an awful play.

Resolution: Fuck ’em. Do your awful play in an old abandoned warehouse.

4. Shakespeare In Love

Threat: Don’t let a girl act.

Resolution: Fuck Colin Firth. Let Gwyneth act. 

5. Mr. Holland’s Opus

Threat: Don’t play rock & roll.

Resolution: Sit on it, William H. Macy. Rock out.

6. The People versus Larry Flynt

Threat: Don’t sell pornography and joke about Reverend Jerry Falwell having sex with his mother.

Resolution: Make as much pornography as you want. Joke extra hard about Reverend Jerry Falwell having sex with his mother.

7. Pump up the Volume 

Threat: Don’t do a radio show where you tell truth to power.

Resolution: Pump up the volume.

8. Pirate Radio

Threat: Don’t play dirty rock & roll on the radio.

Resolution: Who’s going to stop us? You? You and what Navy? Oh, the Royal Navy, I see.

9. Cradle Will Rock

Threat: Don’t put on a leftist musical.

Resolution: Find another theater. Put on your leftist musical.

10. Dirty Dancing

Threat: Don’t dance in a sensual way with the guests.

Resolution: Fuck ’em. Cue Patrick Swayze: “Sorry about the disruption, folks, but I always do the last dance of the season. This year somebody told me not to. So I’m gonna do my kind of dancin’ with a great partner, who’s not only a terrific dancer. Somebody who’s taught me that there are people willing to stand up for other people no matter what it costs them. Somebody who’s taught me about the kind of person I wanna be. Miss Frances Houseman.” 

Stop putting baby in a corner, Hollywood. 

 

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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