I saw Michael Moore's Sicko (1 screen) yesterday. But rather than talk about Moore's good points and bad points, or the nature of propaganda, or the broken health care system, or liberals vs. conservatives, I'd like to pick one small moment from the film and expand upon it. After surveying the French health care system and finding it good, Moore asks why the American government and American media want us to hate France so much. "Is it because they're afraid we'll like it?" he wonders?

He has a point. The anti-France sentiment of the last decade or so is based mostly on stupid insults and jokes about surrendering (see last year's brain-dead Flushed Away for an example). It's the type of stuff the class bully comes up with and everyone just goes along. But if we stop for a moment and use our common sense, the French have it pretty good. Aside from the free health care depicted in Sicko, and their apparent longevity (despite their taste for wine, cigarettes and fatty foods), they've got one of the most beautiful cities in the world, great food, landmarks, music, and some of the finest filmmakers in the world.

categories Columns, Cinematical