Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The Weather Underground

When politics are involved, things are never as simple as they seem. This is true from both sides of the portrayal of a thing. Opponents describe the something in simple, objectionable terms. The group called The Weather Underground was described as terrorists, extremists, anti-American. Proponents use equally simple terms, but one’s they hope to use as inspiration. They portrayed themselves as freedom fighters, righteous crusaders. In truth, neither side captures the picture fully. The 1970’s was a time of volatility in the west, as the world attempted to finally come to grips with it’s switch from a class focused system to one of merchants and industry.
Groups like The Weather Underground came along and created a defined approach to this switch and used methods that drew ire and admiration. But, in the end, these people were humans and humans are not one-dimensional sound bites. The Weather Underground (the documentary) tells the story of what really happened by both the people who fought this group, especially members of the FBI, and the members of the group themselves. It’s amazing to hear their tales and to see where they’ve ended up after years of seclusion and hiding, landing in anywhere from prison to running a bar to being a tenured law professor.
The Weather Underground tells a gripping tale in a gripping way. You see what happened through the eyes of those who were not only there, but intimately involved. Many groups had an impact on the 1970’s but very very few made a bigger splash than The Underground. To hear this story without all the fluff is worth the price of admission. Good stuff.
Worth Watching

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