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21
Jun 04
Mon

Fahrenheit 9/11 under the microscope again

While factual inaccuracies and unfair play may have undermined the full impact of Bowling for Columbine, the New York Times reports that Fahrenheit 9/11 has been properly vetted and verified.

Mr. Moore usually revels in his role as the target of conservative attacks, and his delight in playing the mischievous, little-guy bomb-thrower has brought him fame, wealth and the devotion of fans more interested in rhetorical force than precision. But with “Fahrenheit” he has taken on his biggest and best-defended target yet, and his production staff says that on his orders they have taken no chances in checking and double-checking the film, knowing Bush supporters would pounce on factual mistakes.

Mr. Moore is readying for a conservative counterattack, saying he has created a political-style “war room” to offer an instant response to any assault on the film’s credibility. He has retained Chris Lehane, a Democratic Party strategist known as a master of the black art of “oppo,” or opposition research, used to discredit detractors. He also hired outside fact-checkers, led by a former general counsel of The New Yorker and a veteran member of that magazine’s legendary fact-checking team, to vet the film. And he is threatening to go one step further, saying he has consulted with lawyers who can bring defamation suits against anyone who maligns the film or damages his reputation.

It is, however, still a partisan criticism of Bush’s time in government. However, Moore is an advocate, not a judge. There is nothing wrong with that as long as it is based on solid, truthful evidence.

That said, Mr. Moore’s fact-checkers do not view the film as straight reportage. “This is an Op-Ed piece, it’s not a news report,” said Dev Chatillon, the former general counsel for The New Yorker. “This is not The New York Times, it’s not a network news report. The facts have to be right, yes, but this is an individual’s view of current events. And I’m a very firm believer that it is within everybody’s right to examine the actions of their government.”

Looking very forward to seeing this movie.

  11:17pm (GMT +10.00)  •  Movies  •   •  Tweet This  •  Comments (27)