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Earlier this year Robert Redford – former Hollywood heartthrob, founder of the Sundance Institute, and a progressive activist with connections to the leftist puppetmaster George Soros – released his first film as a director since 2007. The Conspirator was his thinly-veiled attack on Bush’s war on terror posing as a docudrama about the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. Now Redford seems poised to turn the lens of his historical revisionism on a whitewashing of the ‘60s and ‘70s domestic terrorists of the Weather Underground.
In addition to producing, Redford will be doing double duty on The Company You Keep, directing the screenplay adapted from a 2004 novel by Neil Gordon, and also starring as the novel’s protagonist, an ex-Weatherman whose former identity is in danger of being exposed. Still wanted for a deadly bank robbery in his militant past, he goes on the run and reaches out to old comrades. Along the way we are treated, at least in the book version, to the political pontifications and nostalgia of a ’60s radical-turned-academic. Redford’s co-producer on the project, Nicolas Chartier of Voltage Pictures, describes The Company You Keep this way:
This is an edge-of-your-seat thriller about real Americans who stood for their beliefs, thinking they were patriots and defending their country’s ideals against their government.
“Real Americans who stood for their beliefs”? “Patriots”? “Defending their country’s ideals against their government”? What ideals would those be? Proficiency in bomb-making? Penning a “Declaration of a State of War” against America – or as they called it, AmeriKKKa? Advocating the overthrow of capitalism, and killing any “diehard capitalists” who were beyond reform? Launching a race war? Because all of those “ideals” were part of the Weather Underground’s violent and radical agenda. Mr. Chartier has either an edgy sense of humor or a curious interpretation of what constitutes patriotism and our country’s ideals.
As the website The Blaze notes, “some of the WU terrorist group’s most prominent members remain belligerent and unrepentant to this day,” including its co-founder Bernadine Dohrn, who calls the American government “the real terrorist” in this interview from November 2010. Her husband and Weather Underground co-founder Bill Ayers, now a radical academic like his wife, and possibly the model for the central character in The Company You Keep, still has not denounced the group’s violence. “I don’t regret setting bombs,” he famously said in 2001. “I feel we didn’t do enough.”
Redford executive-produced The Motorcycle Diaries in 2004, his cinematic love letter to the young Ché Guevara, who would go on to become Fidel Castro’s cowardly psychopath and communist executioner – or as he is more popularly known, the face that launched a billion T-shirts. FrontPage contributor Humberto Fontova mentions that those who applauded The Motorcycle Diaries
were cheering a film glorifying a man who jailed or exiled most of Cuba’s best writers, poets and independent film-makers while converting Cuba’s press and cinema – at Czech machine-gun point – into propaganda agencies for a Stalinist regime.
The Company You Keep, set to begin shooting in Vancouver in September, looks likely to glorify, or at least attempt to absolve, President Obama’s old friend Ayers as well. And Redford’s other moviemaking efforts as a whole in recent years confirm his left-leaning cinematic messages.
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