Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood

Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood

Historically, classical Hollywood maintained an oppositional, yet oddly mimetic, relationship with the rise of fascist and Nazi ideologies in Europe. As Godard has shown with particular lucidity in his Histoire(s) du Cinéma (1989), the golden era of Hollywood was inextricably tied to the devastation of the two world wars, the Holocaust and the extermination of the Jews. Yet, the relation between Hollywood and Hitler/Nazism, precisely insofar as it was disingenuously defined as a dichotomy of good versus evil, fell prey to the same blind spots that characterize the righteous doctrine of judgment. In other words, the side identified with the good (i.e. American democracy as represented by Hollywood), hence engaging in the righteous judgment of the other, adopted formal and narrative practices whose sadistic quality had its own historical roots and differed from the Nazi style of atrocities only in the scale or degree of its manifestations.

— from one of my profs.

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