Movie Review: Fury (2014)

Furyby Brad Nelson   2/13/15
War is hell. Movie reviews and opinions about war films aren’t much easier. As you know, I thought American Sniper was highly over-rated as a film — not as a vehicle for feeling proud of American soldiers, but as a work of cinema, of actual interesting storytelling.

Fury is 134 minutes long, doesn’t lag and — incredibly, considering that my nemesis, Shia LaBeouf, is in the cast — isn’t full of the typical low-brow, juvenile-oriented aesthetic. I was surprised that anyone could make a war film these days that wasn’t full of self-consciously cheesy dialogue and hackneyed relationships.

First off, this is likely Brad Pitt’s strongest performance in a long time and one of his best films. And this is easily the best tank movie I’ve seen. But my expectations of it were low going into it, having heard my nephew, who recommended this film, say that it was “The best war movie ever.” Well, he’s a teenager. What does he know? Has he seen many of the John Wayne flicks? Has he seen The Longest Day?

But damned if this isn’t one of the best war movies ever. It’s particularly unusual because, from the standpoint of plot, there are a couple of specific missions that are clearly demarcated that Brad Pitt, as tank commander, must lead his men into. Rather than this being the typical long, drawn-out “fog of war” type of film where you have little to no sense of the battlefield, Fury is a movie that gives you bite-sized chunks of war (horrible as they may be).

American Sniper, at least to me, was little more than that blurred, undirected, “fog of war” type of movie. I really couldn’t care about any of the characters. But at the end of Fury — Jesus (as the character, Bible, played by LaBeouf, might say) — I felt like young Norman Ellison did (a rookie replacement in Pitt’s tank crew) at the start of the picture. I was a bit brutalized by it all.

This is a violent film with lots of foul language. And I’m by no means qualified to be a technical adviser to tell you that this movie, instead of that one, is life-like in terms of the action. But, brother, did this seem real — quite like the realism of Mel Gibson’s excellent (and horrifying) We Were Soldiers.

Fury follows the missions of a Sherman tank crew in April 1945, quite late in the war. The American army has pushed on into Germany and the fighting is fierce. One assumes (but I have no way of verifying) that the various aspects you see (such as the SS hanging German citizens on poles that read “Will not fight for the Fatherland”) are aspects of what the real soldiers saw and experienced.

But as much as this is a rare war movie in which you have some sense of place, even rarer is a war movie that takes an honest, hard, and subtle look at what war does to people.

Brad Pitt plays the hard, but generally good, American tank commander. He will do what he can to keep his crew alive. And that crew is about as oddball as those on Donald Sutherlands’ tank in Kelly’s Heroes (with the typically obnoxious LaBeouf, of course, assigned the role as the bible-thumper). Maybe that’s just the type attracted to tanks or is a reliable Hollywood gimmick. Whatever the case may be, through these characters — particularly the rookie, Normal Ellison (played by Logan Lerman) who is plucked out of administration to the front lines — we see the brutalizing effects of war.

Ellison starts out horrified by all of it and we follow him (shades of our own people coming to terms with “radical” Islam) as he finds out just who he is fighting. Soon he will be firing off his machine gun while shouting “Die, Nazis.” But it takes some time to get there.

But he does get there, and yet Ellison has not quite crossed over to the territory of some of his crew members who have been in it since North Africa. The best scene in the movie involves Ellison and Don Collier (Pitt) having a quiet moment with a couple girls in a town they have just taken. Ellison plays the piano, the very model of civilization, in the midst of this carnage. Later one of his truly brutish crew members comes in and fills the room with thuggishness and bangs on the piano discordantly like a monkey. The symbolism is complete. And yet we know from experience that we need these brutes, but it still is not pretty.

This is a war movie, somewhat rare, where actual character development and subtle human interest points are being made. I expected just another movie made by the typical nose-picking yutes in Hollywood and came away amazed to see a war movie bound together by truly cinematic moments instead of stale dialog and cliches.

I would in no way say the realism is complete. Several times it seems that things happen slower than they would in real life and that’s probably in order to build suspense. And the ending stretches credulity more than a little. But I can forgive it that. These are movies, after all, and the point is to entertain, not be training films.

The second best scene is between five Sherman tanks and one Tiger. You can just hear Oddball’s lament from Kelly’s Heroes echoing in your ears: “Nobody said anything about locking horns with Tigers.” But they do and it’s a terrific scene. One hopes that writer/direct David Ayer can be induced to create a movie of one of the greatest tank battles ever, the Battle of Kursk.

Or perhaps I’m wrong about this movie. Checking out one of the threads at IMDB.com (quite at random) I found this series of exchanges in a thread titled Oh, look more Jewish propaganda:

AgentZeR0: *Yawn* When can we get a good WW2 film that does not shove Jewish crap down our throats? (rhetorical question)

aks1987: As long as Hollywood is making them we’ll be forced to see such movies. Jews have their influence in American politics, Hollywood’s no big deal.

snoopsimpson: I guess the jew thing has to be mentioned in WWII movies these days to motivate the 21st century movie goer to have some hate for the Germans. Lets face it ,apart from the jew thing it’s hard to criticize the Germans for what they tried to do in Europe 70 years ago.They were back then, as they are today,the most advanced country both economically and culturally in Europe.

Honestly, unless I missed something, I have no idea what they’re talking about. This is scary, folks, to know that simmering under the surface of Western Civilization is this kind of derangement.

But I think war movie buffs will enjoy this one.


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I like books, nature, politics, old movies, Ronald Reagan (you get sort of a three-fer with that one), and the founding ideals of this country. We are the Shining City on the Hill — or ought to be. However, our land has been poisoned by Utopian aspirations and feel-good bromides. Both have replaced wisdom and facts.

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23 Responses to Movie Review: Fury (2014)

  1. Anniel says:

    I have been following Avi Davis’ blog, avidavis.wordpress.com, and finding how awful anti-Semitism actually is in Europe. The West has been only semi-conscious about European Union incursions into Israel.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      Annie, I was somewhat shocked to read that series of posts at IMDB.com. First off, I didn’t go looking for it. It was the second thread I read. Second, I can’t remember anything even remotely pro-Jewish in the movie. Again, I might have missed something. Perhaps in the minds of these sick people the mere act of fighting the Germans *is* pro-Jewish in some way.

      I don’t really “get” anti-Semitism, as much as Dennis Prager has tried to explain it in his writings and on his radio program.

      One of the particularly comical things is that even if it were true that the Jews were controlling Hollywood and the media (and whatever other areas they are said to control), I believe as Dennis Prager has noted, these are overwhelmingly Leftist Jews – the very ideological ally of the anti-Semites (at least they do vote the same). They are not the Zionists one would think. Most liberals Jews, as I understand it, dislike Israel about as much as the next Palestinian.

      This is an interesting movie in the way it treats the Bible. At first glance, it looks like the kind of superficial mocking you find in most movies these days. But the deeper you get into the picture, the more the idea of “there are no atheists in foxholes” comes into play. Clearly Brad Pitt’s character is well-versed in the Bible. And most of the tank crew are believers, even though Shia kinda-sorta plays the stereotypical Christian fundamentalist lunk-head.

      But this movie moves you to the realization that there really is evil in the world. Perhaps a sub-theme is that while fighting it, we best be on guard against moving towards it.

      And anti-Semitism itself, which is far wider spread than I think most conservatives realize, seems to defy all reason. Perhaps there really is existential evil in the world. When the idea of evil was thrown out in favor of kumbaya “diversity” and the proposition that third-world violence was a justified action against supposed “oppressors,” it became nearly impossible for the Left to confront real evil such as “radical” Islam. One might perhaps understand the hatred of the Jews is a sort of “safety valve” release or transference. It’s okay to hate Jews among the Left by tradition, if anything.

      • Anniel says:

        The other day you quoted something from C. S. Lewis’ “The Screwtape Letters,” so I pulled my dusty copy out and started out by reading “Screwtape Proposes a Toast,” written about 1942. I read it aloud to my grandson and we discussed how even more relevant it is now. Lewis was truly a prophet, and he shows how all sorts of Antis control our culture today. One of the letters talks about how the Devils should use war to further their cause, but they have to be careful because their enemy (God) also uses war to win souls.

        • Timothy Lane says:

          Just look at Lewis’s description of Hell in the introduction. That was equally prescient. National Review once compared it to Barry Screwtape Obama’s Washington.

  2. Timothy Lane says:

    Anti-Semitism to a great extent is simply envy over success, exacerbated by the particular economic middle-man niche frequently occupied by Jews. (Minorities often hold such positions, and find themselves vulnerable in difficult times.)

    Yes, the SS hanged people who were considered insufficiently determined to die for their deranged leader. Near the end in Berlin, Hitler noticed that his SS adjutant, Hermann Fegelein (Eva Braun’s brother-in-law) was missing. They located him, and had him executed as a deserter just a day or so before committing suicide. Some of the worst such leaders (Erich Koch in Koenigsberg, Karl Hanke in Breslau, and Ferdinand Schoerner with Army Group Center) proceeded to depart the scene at the last moment after executing others for doing it just shortly before.

    I’ve seen a modest number of war movies, and I’d probably go with Tora, Tora, Tora as the best.

  3. James Deaton says:

    Great review. For you to say it’s one of the best war movies ever makes me want to so it for myself. I’m not really a Brad Pitt fan but like some of his movies. I would like to see your review of “Troy” he made a few years back.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      Thanks, James. And as I tell my friends, feel free to call me “nuts” about some issue or other. I like talking movie reviews, and there is generally so much contained in any one movie (of any quality), that one review can only scratch the surface.

      For instance, I said that the ending seemed a little implausible. But one commenter at IMDB.com noted that such defensive “last stand” events against enormous odds do occur, Audie Murphy being an example he cited. From Wiki:

      The Germans scored a direct hit on an M10 tank destroyer, setting it alight, forcing the crew to abandon it.[66] Murphy ordered his men to retreat to positions in the woods, remaining alone at his post shooting his M1 carbine and directing artillery fire via his field telephone while the Germans aimed fire directly at his position.[67] Murphy mounted the abandoned, burning tank destroyer and began firing its .50 caliber machine gun at the advancing Germans, killing a squad crawling through a ditch towards him.[68] For an hour, Murphy stood on the tank destroyer returning German fire from foot soldiers and advancing tanks, killing or wounding 50 Germans.

      So I stand corrected on that point. And discussions typically erupt in internet threads about such things as the best tank, how good their armor was, how far various shells could penetrate, whether or not the movie was true to this kind of detail, etc. And I do think this kind of detail, in broad terms, is important lest one range into the kind of unintentional hilarity of defying physics such as many moments in the movie, “Gravity.”

      So you get both ends, people who care too much about minute details and miss the big picture (the fact that the point is story telling and entertainment, not creating a training film) and people who care so little for the details that their stories come up as unintentionally comical. I thought “Fury” struck a good balance.

      Some (probably rightly) noted that the tanks would have been way noisier than you hear in the movie. But perhaps like in the Ron Howard film, “Backdraft,” (which I saw with my fireman brother), they reduced the smoke (which would have been so thick as to make most details disappear) so that they could actually film a movie. I suspect the same thing with “Fury.” It’s not a movie if you can’t hear the dialogue. And some movies of late have taken what I consider the low-brow, low-art approach of ramping up the sound in films (supposedly for a “realistic” effect) so that even people with good hearing have trouble picking up the dialogue. These are the same clowns who, instead of attending to the details of good story-telling, shake the camera instead, apparently thinking mere motion will keep people interested (and I fear this is the case for some).

      Regarding “Troy,” I have to admit that I couldn’t sit through that one. I had rented it on DVD and turned it off about halfway through. It just became boring and pointless. But the buffed and beautiful Brad Pitt must have been a homo-erotic dream for many. It’s actually funny, because in “Fury” he plays a fairly rough-and-tumble Sgt. Rock type of character. And I promise that I wasn’t unconsciously undressing him, but it flashed in my mind the sheer humorous difference between his portrayal of Achilles and that of the hardened tank commander.

      And regarding Brad Pitt performances, he shows that he is a versatile actor to some degree in the Cohn Brothers film, “Burn After Reading,” in which he plays a California-type air-headed fitness instructor. It’s a very funny movie which is meant to be a dark comedy set in a spy thriller.

      • Timothy Lane says:

        Elizabeth and I went to the Patton Museum in Fort Knox several years ago, and they had a tank out front that was about to do a demonstration elsewhere. The noise as it started and then moved off was extremely loud. (We want on in rather than following it off. There were a number of interesting items there, including a section on that fine soldier Elvis Presley — noted for doing things like giving up a seat for a soldier after his own experiences.)

        As for Troy, I watched that on TV once, and was rather displayed at the extreme liberties they took with the original story — though I liked their way of handling the fighting techniques of “fleet-footed Achilles”.

        • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

          I’d love to be able to walk through the Patton museum.

          Not that the movie showed otherwise, but as someone mentioned at IMDB.com, it’s unlikely that tanks of that era could ever sneak up on anyone.

          There’s an online game for the Xbox 360 (and likely other platforms) that you can play for free called “World of Tanks.” I’ve never played it but have watched others do so. It looks like a lot of fun and gives you a rough idea of what it was like to fight using various tanks, perhaps even to drive them.

          I just ran into a comment on IMDB.com that I thought was funny:

          In the end, if you are rooting for the Germans to win, you will not like this movie. Then again you are probably none too happy with reality in general.

          That might explain a lot.

          • Timothy Lane says:

            Sure, tanks can sneak up on you — if you’re in another tank, or for that matter an artillerist actively shooting at the (hopefully) enemy. (It’s especially easy to sneak up on tanks that are buttoned-up and thus have very limited vision. This subject came up in Snow & Steel, not surprisingly. By the way, while the heat of the engine undoubtedly helped in winter, can you imagine what it was like in summer — particularly in the Sahara Desert and similar places?)

            • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

              Yes, with another tank covering of an approaching tank, you would assume that sneaking up was possible. In “Kelly’s Heroes” they ring the church bells to cover the sound of their own Sherman tanks getting into position around the Tigers (and IMDB notes The movie was mainly filmed in Yugoslavia because the Yugoslavian army still had a large quantity of Sherman tanks in 1970).

              Yes, the tanks must have been incredibly hot in desert country.

              I would love to see a “The Longest Day”-grade movie that tackled the goings-on of various aspects of The Battle of El Alamein. Forget the girly-men. Someone should put together an all-star cast to recreate this stunning and important battle.

              Playing “what if,” what if Hitler had poured more resources behind Rommel and taken the Suez Canal? He would, presumably, not only have severely hampered England’s ability to supply itself in war-making essentials, but they would have had ready access to the oil they needed. But Hitler seemed more ideologically driven to whack Russia.

  4. Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

    I saw the movie on the plane and wondered whether or not to write a review. You beat me to it.

    I, also, saw nothing, one way or the other, regarding Jews in the movie. Only a delusional or lying viewer could maintain the movie was pro-Jewish. Of course, if the defeat of Nazi Germany before the total extermination of every Jew they could get their hands on is pro-Jewish propaganda, well…..

    A friend’s father was a British tanker in WWII. When I met him in the eighties, he had lost the hearing in one ear and would lose it in the other a few years later. By the way, the actual carnage is much worse than the movie showed. When he and I discussed some of the weapons on tanks and their effects on the enemy, he told me about an early version of the anti-tank weapon which caused the steel of the turret to spald thus creating many small pieces of shrapnel in the tank when hit. He had to go and check on the occupants and he said it was like finding hamburger. I think he told me he puked.

    I would agree with Timothy that “Tora, Tora, Tora” is the greatest war movie I have every seen. It gets a good balance between the big picture and actual fighting.

    I am still not exactly what I think of “Fury”. It is true Audie Murphy got his Medal of Honor for an insanely courageous act. But even so, he had more men around him for support than Pitt’s crew.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      I, also, saw nothing, one way or the other, regarding Jews in the movie.

      Glad to get confirmation of that. As you know, Mr. Kung, I’m sometimes guilty of skimming. But I couldn’t even think of the appearance of a single Jew in that movie. This certainly wasn’t “Schindler’s List.”

      There’s an underground madness out there, always a part of human nature, of course. But I believe these “Little Monsters” (as you call them) are being made by various foul dogmas.

      By the way, the actual carnage is much worse than the movie showed.

      I don’t doubt that at all. And thanks for the account from your friend’s father. This is one reason I review these things as movies, not documentaries, or even (sometimes) propaganda pieces. It is inherent to the medium that a film like this will be a composite, a condensation, a rough sketch. And, yes, modern filmmakers have tried to add realism to their films with loads of graphic violence. Still, the account from your friend’s father reminds us that even this “realism” isn’t necessarily all that real.

      Thus I tend to stress the cinematic aspect of a movie while also (as is thrust upon us as we battle the cultural Little Monsters of the Left) explaining and outing any propaganda aspects.

      I couldn’t offhand tell you if this is a pro-American, anti-America, or neutral-American film. It seems to want to reach for realism more than it wants to condemn any particular country or political view. That said, it’s clear that the Nazis are evil and that Brad Pitt represents a good-guy ethic — and he represents the kind of damage done to the soul, if you will, of these generally descent human beings having to take on the task that they do. I think this aspect was handled fairly and sensibly. Yes, you see Pitt executing an SS officer (a time or two) but he would have had to get in line behind me for the privilege. Whatever the truth may be (and I have no reason to believe this wasn’t the operating truth in the theatre of battle), American soldiers learned to particularly despise the SS.

      And I would have no doubt that the same sort of awakening and hardening happens when today’s American soldiers come face to face with the Nazi-like evil of “radical” Islam. I’ll take all the Chris Kyles that I can get to blow them away. All I ask for is that their efforts are not wasted by an irrational and delusional national policy toward the problem of Islam and not just “radical” Islam.

      Yes, the ending suffers a bit from implausibility. I sort of mentally wrote that off because the “last man standing” scenario is a very popular theme at the moment, whether talking “300” or “Lone Survivor.” But to the credit of the movie, you do come to actually care for these individual tank crew members. That perhaps is one of the distinguishing features of this film. So (spoiler alert) when they start dying, it matters. For so many other films, you really don’t care one way or another. The characters are usually such conglomerations of juvenile stereotypes, it’s sometimes hard to not cheer a little when their annoying presence is removed from the silver screen.

      But in “Fury,” I think they piece together believable characters. Yes, it’s a movie, so some of those characters are going to tend to be a little larger than life (such as the repulsive Grady “Coon-Ass” Travis character played well by Jon Bernthal). If you’re tank commander Don Collier, you’re just glad he’s on your side and hope he doesn’t at some point turn his gun on you.

      • Timothy Lane says:

        The horror involved in fighting evil can affect more people than just soldiers. The late FBI profiling pioneer Robert Ressler titled one of his books Whoever Fights Monsters in homage to a saying that anyone who fights monsters must be careful not to become one himself. There’s an abyss between normality and the truly, horribly evil, and it’s a terrible abyss to contemplate.

        • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

          One reviewer I read mentioned that there is an aspect of this film that shows the horrors of war as a hard reality, and thus one that should be avoided if possible. This is different from an anti-war film which naively and recklessly denies the necessity of people to defend themselves and instead blames the victims (typically read as “blame America first”).

          This film in no way blames America first. But if you don’t come away from this movie a little shocked by the horrors of war, then you weren’t watching. Given the reality of war (and that reality, as Mr. Kung has noted, is far worse than even the grittiest war film), it’s surprising that people haven’t done more to resolve their differences in another way (while noting, of course, the most wars have little to do with having “differences” and everything to do with one country trying to gain territory and/or wealth by conquering others — and/or being driven by ideological craziness, such as Nazism or Islamism).

          • Timothy Lane says:

            Yes, one can realize that war is horrible (as the Duke of Wellington observed, “Nothing saved a battle lost is half so bad as a battle won”) and yet also realize that it can be a necessary evil. After all, that basically is the point of “In Flanders Fields”.

            • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

              Great quote by Wellington.

              I think another aspect of this is that many men actually love war. Historically it has been the opportunity for adventure, plunder, and rape. Despite the horrors, there is no shortage of men signing up (and you have to wonder if any of the ladies really know what they’re getting into). Often it is said that never has a person felt more alive than during the danger of battle. Few other places, if any at all, offer one a true band of brothers.

              • Timothy Lane says:

                Niall Ferguson discussed this in a chapter in The Pity of War. Both Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini were among those who valued their World War I service, which no doubt influenced their decisions a couple of decades later. No doubt it helps to be totally uncaring for other people’s lives.

      • Bee says:

        You saw the appearance of four Jews in the movie: Logan Lerman, Jason Isaacs, Jon Bernthal, and Shia LaBeouf.

  5. Rosalys says:

    I wonder if the fact that there are still a few men alive who fought in WWII, and many, many of us are the children of those men, is what keeps it in memory as a just war and a war that needed to be fought. Also, that Hitler has been successfully cast by the left as a right winger can’t hurt.

    My husband and I just last night watched Twelve O’Clock High. We thought we must have seen it a long time ago, it is such a classic film; but were surprised that we hadn’t. A very good and thoughtful movie dealing with the effects that war has on those who experience it (though it being made in 1949 it wasn’t close to being “realistic” as we would define it today.) We also watched a Book TV talk by Jack Kelly, the author of A Band of Giants: The Amateur Soldiers Who Won America’s Independence. He talked a bit of how PTSD was present even in the 18th century. Sometimes we forget that people are, whether they lived in 1941, 1776, 1066 or 2000 B.C., they are first and foremost, human. He said, “You have to remember, the American Revolution wasn’t a costume drama!” And we must remember just that about not only the Rev War but for all times past.

    I’ll be on the lookout for when Fury comes to TV.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      Also, that Hitler has been successfully cast by the left as a right winger can’t hurt.

      Rosalys, to me the most useful scale of “wingedness” is found in W. Cleon Skousen’s book, “The 5000 Year Leap.” On one far edge of the spectrum is anarchy (a stone’s throw from libertarianism), On the other edge is totalitarianism (Nazism, Communism, Progressivism).

      The theory, and I think it’s a good one, is based on the idea that any civilized society must balance the needs of liberty and order (with the right balance being near the middle of this scale). Too little order and there isn’t the freedom to walk down the streets in safety and engage in all the activities that humans find enriching (commerce, church, private associations, free speech, etc). On that far end of anarchy, you literally have the survival of the fittest. The bullies and the strong make all the rules.

      On the other hand, too much order (an ingredient that is absolutely crucial to a good society in the right amount) and you lose the essence of human choice and freedom. Humans then become mere cogs in someone else’s (usually Utopian) scheme. The bullies win again.

      I hate to belabor the point (well, I really don’t) but this fairly straightforward formula or paradigm stated above is beyond the ability (or, more likely, willingness) of libertarians to comprehend. Libertarians tend to see any imposed order as an impingement on freedom – and idea they take to an extreme, not tempered by any other consideration (which is why they tend to be mindlessly for abortion and open borders…they have no rationale in their puny ideological arsenal for saying “no” to anyone about anything).

      Even so, order itself is not value-neutral. It matters why we are ordering ourselves – to produce the maximum of human freedom or as a step to a worldwide Caliphate, for instance. Nor is the idea of freedom value-neutral because for some the idea of “freedom” encapsulates abortion, self-evident absurdities such as homosexual marriage, and freedom from all restraints whatsoever (the core libertarian heresy).

      Freedom is a complicated concept and cannot be understood with a juvenile or simplistic mindset. Does it make sense to say, for instance, that you are “free” to blast your stereo system at 3:00 in the morning right next to my house? And if you are not, isn’t this an impingement on your “freedom”? Well, yes, but only if one self-defines the ability to do what one wants, no matter the consequences to others, as an inherently one-way-street, self-evidently good idea called “freedom.”

      I was listening to Dennis Prager’s radio show a couple years ago, and he was talking about how the Nazis are seemingly irrevocably seen as “right wing” by most Jews. This is certainly true of most Progressives as well. (And if Dennis is correct, most non-orthodox Jews are indeed Leftists or Progressives of one style or another, so that may explain that.)

      There isn’t much to say about myths, conspiracy theories, and emotional attachments to pleasing, yet false, ideas. The human animal is very often a dumb animal. But if we were to look at the Nazis objectively, there isn’t much “right wing” about them. Nazis were socialists. They were very authoritarian socialists. They pined for their own type of Utopia. They were also secular materialist atheists, although much like today’s Progressives/Leftists, they made their politics and social theories into a kind of religion.

      Of course, in the mind of today’s juvenile-minded Left, the Nazis and the “right wing” share a trait fundamental to how the Left defines the world. They were both “racists.” In the case of the Nazis, this in undeniably true.

      Yes, “Twelve O’Clock High” is one of the best war movies ever made. And it’s useful to note that this is mostly a psychological drama. You don’t see anyone’s guts blown out of their bodies in slow motion. There was a time before the radical materialism of this Darwinist/atheist age when, horrible as death and dismemberment was in actual war, it was thought that events could be best understood not by the amount of blood spatter but by how humans thought about things.

      Incredibly, despite the loads of blood spatter in “Fury,” you still have that historic, human, and old-fashioned element of understanding an event by understanding how people thought about it, and how it changed them. Whatever writer/director David Ayer’s politics are (and the odds are about 95% that he’s a left wing kook), he has some old-school story-telling sensibilities, at least with this movie.

      • Timothy Lane says:

        Linking fascism and Nazism to the right is based on two aspects. One is their nationalism; in most Western cultures nationalism is associated with the right, the left being more internationalist. (The main exception is France, where nationalism was initially linked to the French Revolution.) This is intensified by the racism of the Nazis, which liberals have come to associate with the right. Finally, left-wing propagandists in the 1930s made this link for their own purposes. It helped than in many countries fascists (or people thought to be fascists) were aligned with more traditional conservatives (e.g., Spain and Romania).

        • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

          One is their nationalism; in most Western cultures nationalism is associated with the right, the left being more internationalist.

          One of the points Jonah Goldberg makes in “Liberal Fascism” is that the Russian Communists were “international” Communists (believing that the entire proletariat would rise up, regardless of their national boundaries). The National Socialists (the Nazis), on the other hand, had a strong national identity, but much the same doctrine in terms of a totalitarian, top-down society.

          More specifically, because the Nazis in Germany (and their brand of socialism) were fighting the International Communists, it gave an excuse (I don’t believe this was an honest misunderstanding) for the Left to see the Nazis as the opposite. But the were just rivals with a different emphasis on the kind of totalitarian society they wanted to form.

          And there are other aspects to this equating “right wing” with Nazis. “Nationalism” became a bad word in Europe because, frankly, these idiots just couldn’t suffer prosperity. Think about it. Before both world wars (even considering a depression), Western Civilization could be said to never have had it so good. And it could arguably be said that it was a “nationalistic” bravado and jingoism (no matter that it primarily exuded from Germany in regards to the two wars) that disrupted the peaceful, if dull (in the eyes of conquerors and psychopaths), pursuit of prosperity.

          This is certainly what fuels the foolish Utopian aspirations of the EU. The idea is that if nations rub out national identities and form deep economic ties with each other, you can’t have the kind of wars that were previously the norm in Europe. In large measure, you can’t blame them. German militarism never did anyone any good, nor did the hundreds of pointless wars between France/Spain/England.

          Interestingly, this strategy has worked in the short-term, but at the cost of cultural suicide in the long term. Due to a cultural, Marxist-induced guilt over imperialism and other crimes (real or exaggerated), as well as the new religious faith of Progressivism (whose main tenets are multiculturalism, relativism, and diversity), Europe decided to import tons of “refugees” (their euphemism for it) whose purpose (other than trying to buttress the welfare state by importing the children that, as Mark Steyns say, they Europeans weren’t having themselves) was to act as mascots to show how darn nice and tolerant today’s Europeans supposedly are.

          And they are tolerant (but not particularly nice). They tolerate an enemy within, making excuses for him, and even outlawing criticism of this internal enemy. So, at the end of the day, Europeans have gone crazy once more. Makes you almost pine for the days of The Hundred Years War. The point as to whether Nazis were “right wing” is irrelevant except to show how politically goof and mixed up the Left is.

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