(Warning Ė spoiler)
ďFinally, a movie about WWII with Native Americans! (a viewer quote on the filmís web site).
Watching Windtalkers (D. John Woo) made me feel several emotions, in an orderly sequence:
1) First I felt sad for all the hurt American soldiers in Hawaii, especially Sgt. Enders (Nicholas Cage).†
2) Next, I wanted to make us all feel better by having sex with the pretty nurse in Hawaii (Frances O'Connor). I forgot her character's name but she is pretty. I like movies that have pretty ladies in them - why aren't there more of these?
3)† Then I was mad at Sgt. Enders for being unbelievably, and I do mean unbelievably, mean to the young Navajo code-talker Yahzee (Adam Beach).† By the way, Yahzee just kept reminding me of Steven, that lovable kid in the commercial who says "Dude, youíre getting a Dell."††
4) Then I got even madder when the pasty cracker guy Chick (Noah Emmerich) from Alabamsas or wherever started drawlin and being mean to the Navajo guys too.† By then, you just knew there was gonna be trouble!
5) Finally, I blew my top when turned out that Chick is† a racist! Also important-† he has a fight with Yahzee.†† Yahzee fights back Ė the Navajo arenít wimps!† But while Whitehorse declares ďitís my war, tooĒ,† the code-talkers mostly just want to be peaceful and do their ceremonies, except for their duty as Americans, which is calling in artillery strikes on the JAPS when the Sgt. Enders leads the brave white marines into a pickle (not his fault!).
Now, before I REALLY start in on Mr. Woo & co., I will mention that there are some good intentions in this movie. There is also an interesting performance from Roger Willie as Charlie Whitehorse, Yahzeeís Navajo sidekick. This film marks Willieís acting debut (he responded to an open call for Navajo in Durango, CO).
By the way, literally 80% of this film is semi-realistic (often ludicrisp) close up kablamo amputory rat-a-tat-tat organ-spattered-flamethrower action.† But actually the most important part is that Sgt. Enders is an incredibly, and I do mean incredibly, brave and fierce warrior.† Heís just like Sgt. York.† He dances in front of the gun emplacements tossin grenades and hurdling over bullets like Pootie Tang, proving that it was possible to be glamorous AND brave while killing dem JAPS. The only time he has a hard time is with that dang Swedorweigan-American Gunnery Sgt. Hjelmstad (Peter Stormare) whoís so darn by-the-books that it makes me want to say "fiddlesticks" and throw my darn canteen down in the mud!
But wait, I almost forgot that war is actually bad, because sometimes your buddies get hurt or even killed!† When that happens, the only answer is to kill more JAPS.† Except the durn Injuns donít think so!† They want to pray† and mourn their dead.† We could sure learn something from these Navajo.
What did the black character think?†† I donít know, I didnít see him.†
However, apparently he was there:
Letís ask the friendly Asian character!† Oops, where is that little fella?† Ok, well letís at least get the thoughts of a JAP fu-manchu villain then. There must be one of them, with so many dead Japanese fellers lying† around, there must be at least one live one to talk to, right?†† Nope.† Just a lotta crazy faceless Asian maniacs wantin to massacre brave Americans.† You know the type.
But wait a minute!† Thatís amazing!† The only people on Saipan were fluffy pink doughboys (with an I-talian for ethnic colorÖ), wacky cermonious Navajo code talkers, and them dang NIPS shoutin their gibberish.††† Wow!† Based on the realism of all the gritty bayonet-impalement closeups and beautiful booming wideshots of carnage, I guess this movieís an accurate rendering of the battle.†† Realistic movies are badass!† I do wonder what the black character would have said to the code-talkers when they were both getting dumped on by Whitey, but I guess they had to cut that part when the 14th day of shooting "fire in the hole!" sequences went overbudget. Making movies is like making war, sometimes you gotta make tough choices!
For example: In a war, a brave white NCO might have to decide whether to let the Nipponese take one of his code-talkers alive as prisoners. Of course he knows they will use evil ancient Asian torture techniques to extract the secret of the code. Man, what a predicament! I mean, you love your code-talkers, right? But you have a duty to protect the code! Wow, talk about the fryin pan and the fire!
The answer is: sometimes you do have to kill your code-talkers, but you will feel bad about it later. Ultimately though, the other code-talkers will forgive you.
Note:People who donít kill their assigned code-talkers will get their heads chopped off - like Pete Henderson (Christian Slater) !
So, I guess the point is, war is very bad and sad and bloody, except you can be a hero, except even then you might die.† But overall, itís worth it, cuz if you kill enough JAPS you can WIN the dang war, thanks to the bravery of men like Sgt. Enders, and oh yeah, the code talkers. Oh, and also, war is better than racism, because in war itís all us Americans together against them dang NIPS who donít even try to speak english.
Thank goodness weíve come so far since the 40ís.† We donít call Japanese people Japs or Nips now.† They have mended their crazy Asian ways and are our friends in the battle against China and North Korea, not to mention Sadaam Hussein, Osama Bin Laden and the rest of them towelhead cameljockey maniacs.†† We should all thank our lucky stars that our society has made so much progress: Now we conduct our foreign policy and military campaigns in a sanitary, justifiable, non-racist, and yet still manly and heroic manner.
As Steven, I mean Yahzee, might say:
"Dude, youíre gettin a War!"
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