‘The Black Panther’ Was Racist, Toward White People: Roseanne’s cancellation to fullfil Disney’s political objectives

So what was wrong with Roseanne Barr saying about the Obama administration activist Valerie Jarrett if “Muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby=vj?” For that Tweet ABC owned by the Disney Company cancelled the top-rated show. I’m not seeing the problem with the hard-hitting comedian saying such a thing, Valerie Jarrett isn’t a black woman or anything—she’s fair game in the public realm, she was born after all in Shiraz, Iran. Many other comedians, even those employed by Disney in some way or another have said much worse about President Trump and white men in general. So why isn’t there allowed a banter back and forth—because in the context of things, that’s all Roseanne was doing.

I watched The Black Panther the other day not knowing much about the character or the movie other than it did very good business and I was shocked at some of the lines by the characters which were obvious put downs toward the white actors. Was that supposed to be funny? What if the white characters said something like, “you black people are all alike,” or something to that effect, how would that have gone over? Likely there would have been riots in the streets and massive protests at the box office. Even though I am pulling for Disney to do well with the new Solo Star Wars movie I couldn’t help but notice the political activism in the film, the very deliberate white guy kissing a black girl, or Han Solo arguing with an Imperial officer that they were attacking the home world of their enemy and that they were in the wrong. Does every movie these days have to have some kind of social commentary?

Can’t people just tell a story? Largely the film is good fun and avoids some of the political pitfalls that have contaminated the other three Star Wars films from the Disney era, but when you do see it the radicalism is quite jarring. At the end of the Black Panther the heroes go to the United Nations and agree to share their awesome technology with the rest of the world. That’s fine for a fantasy story, but there is nothing politically factual about the story of the Kingdom of Wakanda having all this technical power. And the United Nations is not a governing body of any influence, so much of the premise of The Black Panther is purely political, in that they are trying to create a philosophic reality by tossing out the facts of the matter.

I enjoyed The Black Panther mostly, and I root for Disney to do well most of the time. I like Star Wars, I enjoy their theme parks, I’m even looking forward to the new Incredibles 2 coming up. But they are just entertainment options at best these days, and nothing to take too seriously, until they make themselves political. And Disney is certainly guilty of that. I understand they are a company with globalist aims because that’s where the new markets are, but in doing so they are spitting in the eye of Walt Disney himself who was a very stout American patriot. If Disney were alive today he’d be a Trump supporter and likely a leader in the Tea Party movement. Bob Iger on the other hand thinks serious of being a Democratic nominee for President of the United States—is not the same type of person. Iger is pushing liberal politics into the Disney brand, and that has worked for a while so long as they didn’t cross the line. But over the last four or five years the line is being crossed constantly and the only way they’ve managed to get away with it is because there are no other media platforms out there who can really compete with them.

Obviously, the Disney Company was looking for the first opportunity to get Roseanne’s show off the air. While it was making a lot of money for the company the profits from Infinity War alone nearly erase the losses from cancelling Roseanne’s show, and for Bob Iger, feeding the political platform of the other side was something he couldn’t let happen on his watch. The message couldn’t be clearer, it is alright if liberals make fun of conservatives even crossing the lines of racism calling Trump a monkey and all types of terrible names. But if someone calls a liberal a name—especially if she’s female, then all hell will break loose. That is if people care about the Hell that is breaking loose. Honestly for me, I can take it or leave it. I watched one episode of the new Roseanne Barr show and couldn’t handle it. It was just too slow and stuck for me. It certainly wasn’t a conservative show as it was being sold. I couldn’t relate to any of the characters, so I didn’t watch another episode. They were all too negative to me, so it’s no skin off my back for the show to be cancelled. I’ll cheer for Star Wars to do well, and I like the efforts of the Marvel movies, but more and more Disney is losing people like me to their radicalism—and in the long-term, they are making a mistake because its people like me who will support them in the future. Not Valarie Jarrett, who is a well-known progressive radical who invited some rebuke from someone with enough guts to do it—because that’s the nature of the world we are living in today.

What is really going on with Disney and liberals in general with this whole two-faced duality they have going on is that as liberals they want to believe that there is a Wakanda out there, which is an obvious rip off from Ayn Rand’s classic novel Atlas Shrugged. But also as liberals, they have no way of knowing how to get there. They just say that it exists and expect audiences to accept that reality without understanding the foundation of the philosophy. They associate liberalism with skin color and advanced technology and everyone is just supposed to go along with it until someone like Roseanne comes along and makes them look at the world of Donald Trump that they are so desperate to ignore.

Back to the Han Solo reference from Solo: A Star Wars Story, Donald Trump is probably the least war hungry President America has ever had. By the end of his term many of the wars around the world will be coming to an end and that should make Disney and the liberals behind the company very happy. Donald Trump literally is like Han Solo in the new film asking why America is in all these foreign wars. He wants out. But liberals can’t handle that reality, so they choose to ignore it, and when someone like Roseanne gives them an excuse to turn away from the truth, they are more than willing to do it—even if it cuts off their own noses to spite their face.

I wouldn’t have called Valarie Jarrett an ape from the Muslim brotherhood because I have a lot more descriptive terminology to use because I have an extensive vocabulary to draw from, but many people I know of all shapes sizes, sexes and races think the same way about Valerie Jarrett, they just don’t have the intellectual means to express it beyond frustrated terminology, which is why Roseanne had a number one show. Disney can turn their eyes away from that reality, but they can’t outrun the truth. While they are doing well as a company presently, that won’t last forever. There are only so many Infinity War movies out there that they can make as they are quickly turning off conservatives in America with their radicalism. I’ve been one of their biggest fans over the years and they are turning me off, especially after watching The Black Panther. The political activism couldn’t be more obvious. And not having Roseanne on the air won’t have any impact on how people feel. It just means that they go deeper into hiding making them a phantom menace toward future political endeavors. Democrats can’t win by ignoring the facts—they have to come to terms with reality and that is obviously something they aren’t willing to do.

The situation is so bad that I had to send Ron Howard a Tweet today reminding him to keep his liberal mouth shut so that he didn’t further hurt Solo: A Star Wars Story in a very critical week where the film can make some money. I’m not interested in helping Ron Howard, Kathy Kennedy or Bob Iger and their political ideologies, I’m trying to help Star Wars. The American domestic market is still half of all box office totals and it’s not smart to only try to appeal to half the American nation. Like it or not, half the nation voted for Donald Trump and his approval ratings show it. Wasn’t it Michael Jordon who famously said, “Republicans buy tennis shoes too.” The old Star Wars movies didn’t have roots in current politics, so they were films that spoke to higher concepts. They were obviously anti-Nazi, but that was about it. The big problem with liberals is that they are participating this activism in an attempt to erase their own history with radicalism, because it was liberals who were the racists supporting slavery, and it was liberals who took over the German political machine and invented the Nazi. It wasn’t conservatives. So they hope that by overreacting to every little thing, like Roseanne Barr Tweeting about Valarie Jarrett in the same way that other comedians from the political left do toward Republicans like Trump—that they can erase history. But guess what, they can’t. Most of America knows the truth and pandering to demographic groups like Disney has been doing cannot justify liberalism as it is. Because what it always was have been the source of racism and terror. Just like the secret city of Wakanda in The Black Panther Disney can’t just say something is good without showing how, what, why, when and where, and when they attempt to history is always there with a grim reminder that it’s not on their side. Valerie Jarrett is not one of the good people, she’s at best a villain—she will never be a Disney princess. And cancelling Roseanne won’t erase that factual reality.

Rich Hoffman

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Solo: A Star Wars Story Box office discussion–what it means to everyone–and nobody cares about China

Box office numbers are often a good thermometer into what the world is thinking, and I pay attention to them closely, and sadly the new Star Wars movie Solo: A Star Wars Story is falling well short of the kind of numbers its going to need to make. I found it interesting to see how many news outlets were already writing stories on Friday about how dismal the box office numbers were for the new Star Wars movie, like The Hollywood Reporter for instance. Their story was that Solo was bombing big time in China. Well, since when was China the market decider for films, they are communists, more aligned with the villains in these stories? Solo: A Star Wars Story is all about freedom and I’m sure the “state” wasn’t all that happy with the film, and that whether or not people saw the film or even advertised it so that their billion people had access to it is probably a big factor. Asians especially in China are not big on the Star Wars films, but that’s OK, they haven’t been a big part of the box office numbers all this time—who really needs them now? Solo isn’t any different, yet The Hollywood Reporter was almost as happy as a kid on Christmas Day to learn that China was not supporting the new Star Wars picture. There’s a lot going on with this one which justifies a good long discussion.  (CLICK HERE FOR MY REVIEW OF THE FILM)

First of all, I don’t think the poor box office numbers so far reflect that Solo: A Star Wars Story is a bad movie. If you took the box office numbers of Infinity War and Deadpool 2 and released Solo: A Star Wars Story on a light release month, such as April I think this Star Wars movie would be on track easily to achieve a billion dollars at the box office, but with some competition out there, it would appear there is only so much money on the table to divide up between all the movies, and that’s not a bad thing for theater owners. I often say that Hollywood has let down all the personal investments that theater owners have to shoulder with less than stout productions that drive their concessions. That certainly isn’t the problem currently, there are a lot of movies released right now, and coming up as the summer unfolds which should help theater owners sell lots of popcorn. Hollywood owes them for always being available to display the Hollywood product to the public. That same public has a lot to do on Memorial Day weekend, that’s when the pools open in the states and people typically have things to do outside. In America Memorial Day weekend was pretty nice except for some flash flooding in the eastern part of the country. Everywhere else it was sunny and hot—and people spent time outside. May 25th may have been a traditional release date for Star Wars, but it’s no longer a great weekend for opening a movie because it’s the gateway to summer and people are often doing a lot of things that involve going outside.

Additionally, there are problems for Star Wars to overcome, the entertainment media is trying to do with Lucasfilm and Disney what the general media is trying to do with President Trump, and that is torpedo anything that they do that’s good, because everyone else is struggling to compete. Disney is going to make a lot of money this summer between the Marvel films and Pixar’s Incredibles 2—many in the entertainment business are very happy to see a Star Wars movie get bad press, because it’s a shot at Disney as a media company they are competing with. It’s like how the rest of the NFL teams around the country enjoy it when the New England Patriots lose a game, or Tom Brady throws an occasional interception. The trade media rushes out to talk about how Tom Brady is too old and is losing it. But the very next week Brady will throw for 400 yards and have a quarterback rating over 100 and the Patriots will win by 24 points over whoever they are playing. Disney and its tent pole of Star Wars is a big presence in the marketplace and the second handers love to see trouble happening in the Star Wars universe.

But then there is the very legitimate problem that I have talked about before and that is the mistake that Kathleen Kennedy and her story group at Lucasfilm has made in throwing out the extended universe of Star Wars and pushing very progressive themes in these new Star Wars movies cramming PC culture down the throats of the fans who clearly don’t want those elements in these movies. To me the Lucasfilm efforts with Solo: A Star Wars Story went a long way to fixing those problems with the fan base where some still want to enjoy new instalments, while others want to boycott the films in hopes that Disney will fire Kathleen Kennedy for messing with the elements that made Star Wars great to begin with. Nobody cared that Princess Leia was a bit of a feminist in the original A New Hope. George Lucas tried to make people happy by putting a black guy in the stories with the character of Lando. But in general, the heroes were white people, especially men and Kennedy has been very active to change that. But while doing so she literally destroyed two of the most popular female characters that fans loved, Jaina Solo, Han’s very strong daughter, and the wife of Luke Skywalker, Mara Jade. Fans who read the books went on a lot of journeys with those characters over two decades and suddenly fans were told that those people didn’t exist in Star Wars anymore, and that has caused a lot of consternation. When The Last Jedi failed to reveal who the parents of Rey were—many people were hoping that she was actually Jaina which would at least explain why she is flying around in Han Solo’s precious Millennium Falcon—a lot of fans stepped away from Star Wars at that point and now this second film in only a year has hit theaters and people are ambivalent about it. The Last Jedi was a very progressive movie that really split the fanbase, from not revealing the parentage of Rey, to the killing of Luke and the obvious progressive messages of feminism and sacrifice where everyone was blowing themselves up instead of taking the fight to the enemy, it’s that which made it so the fans stepped away from Solo: A Star Wars Story.

I have been enjoying the new Star Wars stuff the best I could. I have not been a fan of what Lucasfilm has done. I was a big fan of the Star Wars EU and I think Lucasfilm could have easily have just picked up these stories where the books left off and would have done something really special. However, I think the value of the movies and all the merchandise that is coming from the franchise does far more good than bad. I think Lucasfilm and Disney made a major mistake with Star Wars and that they are trying to remedy that now. For me Solo: A Star Wars Story was a huge step in that direction—of making things right with the fans. But its obvious that the fans are going to make Disney and ultimately Lucasfilm earn back that respect which is where things are today. There was a boycott of this latest Han Solo movie and it had an impact on the final ticket sales. As the word is getting out, because Solo: A Star Wars Story is pretty good—I think its one of the best and is certainly on par with the original films somewhere in quality of story telling between The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. But the film is more fun like A New Hope was. I like the prequel films but can admit that Solo: A Star Wars Story is better than those films and it is certainly better than The Force Awakens. But these new young actors are making a name for themselves, the young Alden Ehrenreich is earning his respect from the fans little by little. Many fans have been sitting on the fence with Solo: A Star Wars Story because they weren’t sure how to feel about a new actor taking over for the legendary Harrison Ford. If this latest Star Wars film does anything it shows fans that its possible to have a younger actor playing an old favorite, and because of that I think Solo: A Star Wars Story will have good legs into the future of the franchise, and people will come back to the films and forgive Lucasfilm and Disney for their mistakes with the first three films made since the acquisition in 2012.

Alden Ehrenreich is a smart young actor with a good head on his shoulders, and he likes playing Han Solo in Star Wars. He’s good for the franchise and understands that taking less money for the opportunity to do more films like this makes good business sense because it could place him in Hollywood as the next big demand actor—like Harrison Ford was. With all that under consideration I think Disney certainly put the cards down on the table with this one holding nothing back promotionally. I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that they spent $500 million on the movie and are worried at this point of making that money back, which I think they will. But they spent the money expecting a billion in return and that could cool them on launching the other projects that are in the pipeline. Hopefully they let Lucasfilm go forward with the budgets on those new films, the Kenobi film, the Boba Fett film, the Rian series, and of course at least two more movies about the young Han Solo—as well as a whole bunch of other films not yet released. It’s not too late to make these films into the kind of successes that were experienced with Marvel—but getting the fan base back on board is the key.

To win back the audience, and this is just my advice, do with it whatever you want Lucasfilm, you have to get Mara Jade and Jaina Solo into Episode Nine as its being directed now with J.J. Abrams. Everyone gets what they want if that happens, Kennedy gets her strong female leads, Luke has a reason for being so distressed in The Last Jedi, and Rey gets a name and a reason for having the Falcon with Chewie as her co-pilot. A new trilogy featuring Jaina could even take things further 30 years after Episode Nine—the possibilities are endless. It took Marvel ten films to build up the kind of anticipation that was seen in Infinity War, Star Wars could do something very similar, but they’ll have to earn back the fans, and Solo: A Star Wars Story was a big first step. Hopefully Disney doesn’t get cold feet after they study these box office results and consider whether fans will support two Star Wars movies in the same year. They will, and they will support three or four a year if Disney will make them and be very profitable with $200 million budgets. But it will take more movies like Solo: A Star Wars Story to earn back that fan trust, not more movies like The Last Jedi or even The Force Awakens. The nostalgia wore off and now reality is there for Star Wars films, going forward, people want to see new ground that pays respect to what they know from the original EU—and fans don’t want to be preached to with gay characters, or black characters, or women. They just want to see a story set in a galaxy far, far away that will endure for centuries—and not fall out of favor with whatever new political movements come in the next few decades. Star Wars fans want their traditions, and they want the long view—and its their money that Disney wants, so it’s up to the giant entertainment company to give it to them.

I think I’ve listened to the new Han Solo theme from the John Powell soundtrack back to back for a solid four days now and I love it, it’s so full of optimism. It reminds me of how it was when Christopher Nolan’s Dark Night series started back in 2008, with a movie that many people didn’t think was needed because at that point Batman had been done so many times. The Nolan trilogy built up a nice audience and earned a reputation by the fans that they trusted and supported. Those films each went on to make over a billion dollars each. Iron Man the first Avenger film also came out that year with a fantastic performance by Robert Downey Jr. The film only grossed around $500 million globally much like I think this new Han Solo movie will make, but it became the glue that built up those next nine Marvel films. Disney purchased Marvel shortly after that film’s release and the rest is now history, and has been very successful. It has allowed Disney to make obscure films like The Black Panther, which I thought was pretty good—which would have never been made unless there was a need for the ever-expanding universe. Star Wars could do better, but the fan base will have to be built and listening to that soundtrack of Solo: A Star Wars Story that new Han Solo theme could serve as a nice light in the darkness for all the Disney executives timid about the next stage of the adventure. The best thing to do would be to support the effort and not panic, there is a lot of good that came out of Solo, and it hints at how things truly could be now that it looks like Lucasfilm is starting to figure out how to make these Star Wars movies without the guidance of George Lucas. The John Williams contribution is absolutely brilliant and I hope that everyone involved can use it to launch something really special, because the opportunity is certainly there.

Rich Hoffman
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“Chicken in the Pot”: A brilliant ‘Solo’ soundtrack by John Powell

I saw Solo: A Star Wars Story two times in the first 24 hours of its release–it was a day that I’ve long looked forward to. (SEE MY REVIEW HERE)  As I’ve established many times Star Wars for me is an intellectual vacation destination. Some people like to go to the beach and lay out on the sand under a powerful sun to relax, others like to visit other countries and sip mixed drinks from their hotel bar. Personally, I enjoy visiting that galaxy far far away in the movies, music and video games that have sprung from the mythology of Star Wars. There is so much imagination in that vast entertainment option that I find my mind can rest there and enjoy the world they have created. Real life has plenty of challenges and as readers know who read here often, I have a grip on reality that is far more intense than what the average person cares to endure, so I don’t mind sharing some of my little secrets for dealing with excessive amounts of stress, and Star Wars does it for me, especially on the creative side of things. When a new movie comes out on Blu-Ray I enjoy the making of the movies far more than the actual stories because that’s what I most enjoy in Star Wars is the vast creativity those projects generate. And among all the elements that are positive from Star Wars movies is the music, so when a new film hits that I like a lot I usually get the soundtrack at the very first opportunity. It is my favorite part of any good movie I enjoy is listing to the soundtrack of the film, and that is certainly no exception with Solo: A Star Wars Story. John Powell did a great job with it and I have found myself particularly obsessed with one particular part of that musical track, a song called “Chicken in the Pot.” It is the weirdest bit of music that I’ve heard in many years and I just love it.

I loved Solo: A Star Wars Story the first time, but I found the second time even more enjoyable. On that second time I was listening to the soundtrack in the car on the way to the theater and that track 8 song came on and it reminded me of the original cantina song from the original A New Hope soundtrack that has been used so many times over the years for everything that exhibits weirdness in these films. But this was different even for a Star Wars movie, the sound is clearly classic almost Frank Sinatraish only with an eerie female chorus of varying pitches singing in an alien language. Further, in the actual movie when that scene is up our heroes are about to meet the gangster Dryden Vos at his luxury barge and there are lots of exotic people at the bar where these singers are performing. One is a woman of some alien species singing with this strange little guy providing base in a jar of liquid. It was a really unique scene I thought that was spectacularly environmental. It was so weird that it took me a couple of viewings to register it, and I was so happy it ended up on the soundtrack. That is just the kind of music that a place like the new Disney World Galaxy’s Edge is going to need for the fans who participate in their new Star Wars experience next year. John Powell pulled that one out of somewhere to create a new level of creative brilliance.

What makes music like that work is the context, its rooted in our classic Hollywood musicals, but it is certainly distinctly alien. It also nearly sounds like the music is being played backwards which is a hint into the character of the main villain Dryden Vos who appears quite pleasant when he first meets people but if you peel back just a few layers of his behavior he is absolutely brutal—in the calmest fashion possible—a strange mix of contrasts. What’s bold about this new Solo: A Star Wars story is that they are exploring how all these crime syndicates function in the great mythology of the greater Star Wars galaxy, such as the Crimson Dawn and the Pike Syndicate. Its like stepping away from the politics of a film like All the President’s Men and getting to know the details of The Godfather, or even Scarface, which gets into the details of the boots on the ground thugs that are often used for the greater advantages of the top-level politics. The plots are compelling because they are rooted in reality. In the case of Star Wars Dryden Vos is kind of regional player. Everyone is afraid of him, but he’s very quick to suggest that he’s just another small fish in a very big pond. In that scene where we meet Dryden for the first time it’s that music that introduces him. Nothing is as it seems, but yet it’s all right there in front of you.

This is now the second Star Wars film that does not have John Williams scoring it, although he did play a part of the John Powell soundtrack, which is obvious. I was worried about this part of the Solo film experience, but now that I’ve had a chance to listen to the soundtrack a few hundred times over the last 48 hours I am quite happy with it. Music is what sells these stories to our subconscious and we are truly in new territory here with these movies. Very few people really think about what it takes to make a film but it’s always on my mind with regard to projects like this. Hollywood as a whole is a dying culture yet there are people working in it that are brilliant in what they do, like the people who work at Industrial Light and Magic, all the musicians that score all these big movies—people like John Powell out there who are bringing the classics of tomorrow alive today within the context of the film industry. I admire filmmakers in how they employ thousands of people who on something like a Star Wars movie are the best in the business, from the unsung producers who set up everything on these complicated shoots to the people like Powell who get to put their name on a major part of the creative process. I look at each one of these as a small miracle of capitalism that they even happen. If they are financially successful, then more people get to work on a new movie, and I really hope Solo: A Star Wars Story is successful financially so that our culture can get more of these movies. If we get more movies than I get more soundtracks that make daring music like John Powell did in Solo: A Star Wars Story, specifically the track “Chicken in the Pot.” I could listen to that all day long, and if there are many more of these Star Wars movies, there will be quite a collection of unusual music that will emerge from them.

I think we all benefit from these explosions of creativity. As I was watching this latest Star Wars movie on the two occasions within 24 hours of each other on opening day, I saw a lot of happy people buying Star Wars merchandise and enjoying themselves with their families. If that is all that came out of Star Wars, I think that would be enough. But there is more, a lot more and the platform of Star Wars gives some of our most creative people a place to experiment and sometimes those results produce something so unique, like “Chicken in the Pot.” That takes life and elevates its potential by expanding our imaginations in positive ways which advance our species in ways that are so far, immeasurable.

Rich Hoffman
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Solo: A Star Wars Story Review—What a GREAT movie!

Well, that was a lot of fun—a whole lot of fun. I need to see it again, but I think the new Star Wars movie Solo: A Star Wars Story is my favorite film from the franchise and is in my top ten of all time. It reminded me a lot of Raiders of the Lost Ark. In many ways it also reminded me of a kid’s version of The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly. And it reminded me a lot of Pirates of the Caribbean and likely that was what Disney was thinking by going with this part of the Star Wars franchise. Solo: A Star Wars Story was just pure fun technically executed to perfection. If this was the most expensive Star Wars film ever made requiring something like nine months of shooting to get right—it showed on the screen. I enjoyed the movie as an adult, but really it’s the kids who see this that are in for the biggest treat. In so many ways I thought the film was brilliant. It started with a car chase on Han Solo’s home planet of Corellia and ended with a card game where Han wins the Millennium Falcon from Lando—but what happened in between was pretty magnificent on the scale of adventurous fun and special effects achievement. Solo: A Star Wars Story is one of those movies that you come out of the theater feeling good about seeing, and it’s certainly one that will be the most fun to watch over and over again once it hits the home theater market. This for me personally is the Star Wars film that I’ve always wanted to see and it actually went a few steps further—which was refreshing.

There are movies over the years that were defined by just a few scenes, such as in Jurassic Park in 1993 where we first saw a T-Rex eat its way through the fence of its holding cell during a thick downpour of rain. Or in 1981 in Raiders of the Lost Ark where Indiana Jones climbs under the truck that is trying to run over him—Solo: A Star Wars Story has several moments like that in it. The two that most come to my mind is when the Millennium Falcon was caught in the gravity well of the Maul during the Kessel Run and a giant monster was trying to eat them in space. The effects and story elements were just jaw dropping beautiful. Then the second is the stand-off between Han Solo and Tobias Beckett near the end where it is recorded for all time, “Han Shot First,” without question. Put that controversy to rest forever, and I thought it was a very powerful moment in these very political times where PC seems to ruin everything. With Han Solo being such a practical, no-nonsense guy, shooting first is a logical thing to do, and it was very satisfying to see him unflinchingly do so. I think it was on par with the time that Indiana Jones shot the swordsman in Raiders of the Lost Ark, also written by this Solo screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan.

When George Lucas decided to re-edit the Han Solo scene shooting Greedo in A New Hope he was giving in to political pressure that was coming from the anti-gun crowd. Lucas wanted to make sure that Han Solo wasn’t considered a blood thirsty murderer which can sometimes be a very fine line between a sparkling hero who just shoots a villain. If everyone can’t agree that a villain is a villain one person’s hero is another person’s murderer, so George Lucas made sure that Greedo shot first in the 1997 Special Editions of his original Star Wars Trilogy. Making the decision to have Han shoot first in this film to end the life of a main character was quite a statement and now an issue that as been bouncing around among Star Wars fans for many years is settled. Han Solo will have forever be known to have shot first—which is consistent with his character. As a person who has seen hundreds of westerns over the years, I thought it was an extremely well-done scene that felt oddly good. I would go see this movie another 20 times at the theater just to watch that one scene. I put it on my scale of fantastic cinematic events in the top ten—perhaps the top five. This movie would have been good if that’s all that happened in it.

But that was only one small scene. For me the best of the Star Wars movies were sections of A New Hope and the first two-thirds of The Empire Strikes Back. I think I would put this Solo: A Star Wars Story just ahead of those two films because it gives audiences all the fun things without the emotional weight that happened at the end of The Empire Strikes Back, or even The Force Awakens. With Han Solo being one of the best characters it’s no fun to have him frozen like what happened in Empire, or to be killed like he was in Force Awakens. I understand those artistic needs in a film but what makes a prequel like Solo: A Star Wars Story fun is that you know Han is going to live and come out on top, so you can just enjoy the ride. In that way I think this is the best Star Wars film made to date because it is lacking the emotional weight of any heavy subject matter—just like the Pirate of the Caribbean movies. Star Wars has certainly contributed to heavy story telling with difficult subject matter, but the roots of the franchise were always well-set in B-movies and Saturday Morning Matinees where viewers knew the hero would live from one cliffhanger to another, but the thing they wanted to really know was how.

In that way this Solo: A Star Wars Story was more like an Indiana Jones film where we knew the hero would find some way out of whatever mess they found themselves in but learning how they’d escape was the real fun. It’s like a fun amusement park ride where it all looks dangerous and you know that when the ride ends, you’ll safely put your feet back on the ground. But during the experience, you are experiencing thrills and chills that you couldn’t get anywhere else. In a lot of ways if we as the audience didn’t know that Han Solo would survive this movie we’d not be able to deal with the suspense of going through so much in such a short period of time. The young life of Han Solo was pretty intense and for lots of emotional reasons, is best viewed in hindsight—as a prequel film. Pretty stunning stuff.

Another movie I kept thinking about during Solo: A Star Wars Story was James Cameron’s Titanic from 1997. Like Solo, it had a troubled production, cost overruns and all types of controversy, but Cameron kept his nose down and plowed through the production to what became one of the biggest box office sensations in the history of cinema. On the day of its release which I took a day off work back then to see with advanced tickets that my wife was bewildered that I wanted to see so bad, the critics were all over the picture slamming it for every little thing they could think of. When the film opened, and the word of mouth got out about it, the business exploded for the next six months which was unheard of for films even back then. People wanted that type of optimistic story set against a tragic backdrop and the big downer of course was that Jack had died. The critical appraisal and industry backlash against Lucasfilm for inserting Ron Howard into a movie that was almost done and reshooting 80% of the film with an additional 4 month schedule has all those naysayers smelling blood in the water and the real sharks out there love to take bites out of careers and torpedo films that find themselves in such a situation. But I was just a little stunned at how good Solo was even down to the musical score by John Powell in using vuvuzelas to provide emphasis and some heightened emotion. Vevuzelas are those insect sounding horns that you hear in European soccer stadiums that are constantly buzzing—those horns were used in this movie to a very stunning effect in the background that I thought was very gutsy. The entire production takes those kinds of unique risks that will go down in film history as some of the boldest by a supposedly big commercial company like Lucasfilm and distributer Disney.

One thing that really benefits Solo is the presence of some big names in the business of acting, such as Donald Glover who is presently nearly like Michael Jackson in his popularity. The kid has the number one song in the country and here he is playing Lando Calrissian in the latest Star Wars movie—and he’s having fun with it. Glover isn’t the star, Alden Ehrenreich is. Without question, this is Alden Ehrenreich’s movie and that’s big shoes to fill considering that Emilia Clark is starring in the last season of Game of Thrones filming presently and she is the star of that series which is also filled with fantastic actors—the best of the best. Talk about a tough job not just to overcome the Hollywood legend of Harrison Ford which Ehrenreich did I think quite spectacularly, but in holding his own against some really big stars sharing the screen with him. As much as people want to make this movie about Lando, as it turned out, Lando as played by Glover was the same Lando from The Empire Strikes Back, a swindler, a con artist, and a person of questionable moral authority who is on the check list of revenge for a raging Han Solo at the end of this film. It says a lot about a movie that for a change doesn’t end with a big action sequence that saves the universe from immaculate destruction, but with a card game that in its own subtle ways does save the galaxy. What if Han had not run down Lando at the end of the film to play one last time that game of sabacc. The first Death Star would have killed all the rebels in A New Hope. Princess Leia would have never have gotten away from her raging father in The Empire Strikes Back. The second Death Star from The Return of the Jedi wouldn’t have been destroyed by Lando Calrissian many years after these events in Solo. Rey would have died on Star Killer Base in The Force Awakens and she never would have found Luke Skywalker in The Last Jedi. In so many ways this sabacc game at the end of Solo: A Star Wars Story was a huge climax, but for a film like this in this day and age where bigger and bigger explosions leave audiences gasping just prior to exiting the theater, this movie slowed down long enough to get to the real heart of the movie, the treasure that Han Solo wanted more than anything else in life—his own starship so that he could earn his freedom finally to live life on the terms he always wanted to live it.

The tragedy of the film is that Han Solo doesn’t get to live happily ever after with his childhood love who turns out to be an agent of evil—sort of. But this isn’t the kind of heart wrenching let down that we see in Titanic and it remains to be seen if a film like Solo can drive big billion-dollar numbers without essentially being a tragedy. I think the answer is a big yes, but producers are following formulas of what has worked in the past basically starting with films like Casablanca and Citizen Kane. To end a movie on a high note is what film schools are teaching their students who then work in the industry as “paying fan service.” Well, yeah, duh. Aren’t these movies made for the fans? Who says that Han Solo has to become a mess because he has lost his girlfriend in this movie to the ambitious revenge plans of Darth Maul? Hey, Han won the ship of his dreams—who needs a woman? And that is pretty much the attitude which is very refreshing in these kinds of movies where Anakin Skywalker was drawn to become Darth Vader because of his love for his secret wife. The ability to shrug off trouble is exactly what makes Han Solo a great character and why these types of Star Wars movies are needed for the franchise. The emotions over the last three films have been too heavy-handed, Luke has died, Han Solo as an elderly figure has died, and all the members of Rogue One died. It’s nice to see a film mostly without heartache for a change that is full of fun and adventure—because most of us have enough of all that in our lives, who wants to pay money to see more of it?

As I said the best parts of Solo: A Star Wars Story are the scenes it recreates from the best parts of A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back—the scenes in the cantina in the very first film, the heroics on Hoth in Empire and into the asteroid field which has never been recreated in any film since—in forty years of trying. The price of the entire movie would be worth just watching the Kessel Run, a desperate journey into the Maw of Star Wars legend where a black hole makes passage very dangerous—impossible really. To watch a bold young Han Solo cut off from an exit into the Maw by an Imperial Star Destroyer turn the Millennium Falcon around within a gravity well and to fly back into the worst part of it in order to escape is something that no modern movie can duplicate. It’s not just that there has been a 40 year build up into creating an elaborate mythology about what constitutes a “Kessel Run” but the execution of it on a movie screen is something that has just recently become technically possible—its quite something to see. Why would anybody wait to see a big firework display on the Fourth of July? Because its cool. That’s also why everyone should see Solo: A Star Wars Story at least once, because this one scene of the Kessel Run is just that cool. Luckily, that’s not the only thing worth watching but if you had to pick one thing, that would be it.

The character of Han Solo is something that is very unique, and precious to human creation, there really has never been another character in film or literature like him. You won’t find a comparable character in any Shakespeare literature or within the music of Mozart. The Greeks and Romans never came close in any of their work in creating a foundation for the kind of fearless character that Han Solo is—the boldness and self-confidence that made the character something so many people have loved now for half a century. The only literary reference out of all creative efforts by mankind over our entire history has been the work of Wofram Von Eschenbach’s Parzival in the Middle Ages with a little bit of Lancelot sprinkled in for good measure. George Lucas literally created the character of Han Solo during his racing days where souped-up cars and cruise music filled his mind. After nearly dying in a car crash and deciding to get serious with his life he ran into the work of Joseph Campbell and these stories by Eschenbach and Han Solo was born. The spaghetti westerns of Sergio Leone were popular during this period so Lucas put all those strong images of maleness into the character of Han Solo from A New Hope and something really new was born which certainly does deserve its own movie—or series of movies. The character of Han Solo is beyond review for most studied people, because there is no reference for which to place context in the traditional way. Han Solo really isn’t afraid of anything. He is like Parzival in Eschenbach’s epic Arthurian legends in that he knows how to get to the Grail Castle with his hands limp against his horse trusting fate and his raw talent to take him anywhere he needs to go. Getting “there” is never the goal for Han Solo, which is why he always finds himself exactly where he needs to be where heroics are needed. Solo always trusts that he can get out of whatever trouble he finds himself in which makes seeing a movie starring a character like that extremely unusual. Usually what drives a dramatic narrative is the hopes and fears of the protagonists—but in the case of Han Solo he’s really not afraid of anything and he believes anything is possible and it is on that boundless optimism that we as viewers are transported to possibilities that are best experienced in a great movie. That puts Han Solo into a category all his own and makes a movie like this so much more special.

Solo: A Star Wars Story is a movie that is special. You don’t have to be a Star Wars fan to enjoy it, but if you are, then we are seeing the start of something really positive emerging creatively from the Lucasfilm group. I would place Solo as one of my favorite movies of all time. It’s up there with Raiders of the Lost Ark and even Scarface. It’s a reflection into the way movies used to be made with themes that simply have not been part of the modern theatrical experience. It’s a movie you will want to watch in the future on a home system just to feel good about something. When you are having a bad day, this is the movie you will want to put in and watch for a few hours—its fun, its optimistic and is full of adventure. Additionally, it takes the mythology of Star Wars and really begins the expansion of it in ways that build the brand under the Disney tent like nothing else could. We go places in this film that unlocks thousands of potential stories for the future. If everything we know about Star Wars came out of the first three films done forty years back in the eighties, then this film takes a step into that world to unlock more potential on a scale of 100 times what we’ve known. Simply put, there is a creative impulse to this movie that is so bold and audacious that it is formulative into everything that comes after it, even if those creative endeavors are not Star Wars related. Solo: A Star Wars Story is in a place of its own and shows theatrical leadership in ways that are not only necessary, but excessively refreshing. It is the movie to see if you are going to see one, not just once, but as many times as possible. It’s that good.

Rich Hoffman

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‘Solo’ Gets a Standing Ovation at Cannes: Mythology and culture are on expanding in a very positive way

I can’t emphasize enough what Star Wars means to our current society—and specifically how important this next film, Solo: A Star Wars Story is to the continuation of the great mythology that is now set to take on a life well beyond anything planet earth has ever seen. As I say often the most important topic to me out of all the things that I discuss is the realm of mythology and how it captures the minds of mankind and propels it forward at each juncture of history. I am specifically thinking right now about the great legends of King Arthur, or the early works of the Iliad where Odysseus propelled modern society to its current form to the point where our civilization has outgrown those great stories. Our modern society is very complex, and we know so much about so many things that were not known at the time that the great classics were written, and we are and have been in desperate need for stories that can take us all into the future—because that’s how human beings work. They need conceptual devices in story form to put into context their observed reality—and even though Star Wars is intended for kids, it works on so many levels to get the imaginations of the human race moving that I think it’s currently the most important thing in the world happening right now, and I understand very well what is happening from North Korea to the taxation of Amazon in Seattle—to the teacher union strikes, to the corruption of our own FBI becoming weaponized against us all. Even in that context I think this new Star Wars movie is a tremendous opportunity for mythmaking to expand dramatically into the lives of all thinking beings on planet earth for the better, and it would all come down to the presentation of the film at the Cannes Film Festival in France. It’s not just because I love the character of Han Solo, but it’s why the movie was made in the first place that I think it’s so important and I was very happy to see a standing ovation for the film after its screening. This is going to be a big one.

I read the critics opinions of the film and most of them were positive, many very positive with about 23% less than enthusiastic. What those lukewarm reviews had in common was that they missed the epic scale of life and death situations that have been present in Star Wars up to this point—the save the whole galaxy or else type of storylines. If Star Wars is going to work in future, they need to become much more individualized, personal stories which we all know culminate into the three trilogies of nine films we have mostly been familiar with. And once Lucasfilm accomplished that, mythology by way of the vehicle of Star Wars will be unleased in a very dramatic way and I don’t think those people trained into their institutional professions, and are making good livings in those comfortable places, are open to these big changes. Their comments about nobody asking for a movie about Han Solo and that the movie is just capitalizing off the Star Wars name and is an entirely different kind of film altogether are missing the point. This movie was always intended to expand the Star Wars mythology in ways that I would argue it always needed to go—since the Empire Strikes Back way back in 1980 and I think everyone watching this movie is going to be in for a surprise.

I know enough about this movie to be happy with the decisions that Kathy Kennedy has made over the last two years. A lot of people do not understand how hard it is to make a movie, and to negotiate contracts with expensive actors and to hold those contacts over many films. I continue to be amazed how the Marvel team does it with all their big-name actors now and how they can put them all in a film like Infinity War. That would be an astonishing payroll to put all those stars into one movie, but Marvel has figured it out and that Disney polish is now coming to Star Wars with these Han Solo movies serving as a test bed of creative entanglement. I will be the first to say I was not happy with the Lucasfilm abandonment of the original books which they now call legends, and I was not at all happy with The Force Awakens when they killed Han Solo in that movie. Long time readers here know very well how angry I was at the way they dealt with Han Solo’s character in that film and I did several radio shows discussing the issue in detail. However, and I know I wasn’t the only one, I think Lucasfilm to a reasonable extent has listened to the fans—and they have made some adjustments with this Solo movie which is why it needed to stay on schedule even after the previous directors were fired and Ron Howard was brought on to fix things. It’s also why I believe that the last movie of the modern trilogy, Episode 9 now directed by J.J. Abrams was pushed out into 2019—because Lucasflim needed to see how audiences reacted to new story elements in this new Solo movie.

I don’t think Kathy Kennedy or Bob Iger are all that happy with the direction of Solo: A Star Wars Story, I think they’d love to have a much more progressive film with less male characters acting so strongly. That’s a very educated guess on my part, but business is business. If you are running a movie company that makes Star Wars movies and you intend for them to transcend modern politics, then they need to be timeless stories, and this new Han Solo movie needed to be more of a classic western than a modern progressive version of Guardians of the Galaxy. I watched Kathy Kennedy at the Cannes press events and I think she is breathing a bit better now—she really needs to pull in at least a billion dollars off this Han Solo movie to justify everything they’ve done with Star Wars since Disney bought it in 2012. She made serious mistakes putting top-heavy female characters into Star Wars and making really stupid comments like she did to the New York Times where she said she didn’t care about male Stars Wars fans—which traditionally have been the primary support of the franchise for over four decades now. There was always room for women in Star Wars, but they couldn’t just take everything over and get away with it. The backlash against Kathy Kennedy in general has been harsh. And Bob Iger is an anti-gun liberal, so it’s probably tough for him to see all these posters of Han Solo pointing a gun out into the horizon, but that’s the character and that’s what people want to see in movies, and putting politics aside, Lucasfilm and Disney have given fans what they want—which is a very good thing.

I will likely give a very long and detailed review on the 24th of May which will articulate many, many things that I think are superb about this new kid’s movie which I think will capture the hearts of so many people in a very positive way. It’s not just the movie that I’m happy about, but what will come out of it creatively. Mythology has always been the center of any advanced culture and when a story works—it advances everything from arts and sciences, to politics and philosophy. And after watching that standing ovation at the Cannes Film Festival, I am quite sure that we are all about to see something very special.

Rich Hoffman
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Uber Elevate in West Chester, Ohio: Getting ready for the future, because its on our doorstep–all we have to do is open the door

Sign me up, Uber doesn’t even have to sell me on it. I have been all about skycars for over two decades now and understand that this form of transportation was always the key to our future as human beings—everywhere in the world. It is time for that great technical leap and I am prepared to do whatever needs to be done to bring a skyport to my town of West Chester, Ohio. Let me provide a situational necessity for why Uber Elevate is needed not just in my home city of Cincinnati, but in every city. Here is a problem I run in to several times a year, I have business guests from out-of-town. At the conclusion of our business day they go back to their hotel, usually a few miles down the road in the heart of West Chester, Ohio. Before they leave, I offer to take them to a Reds game, which they almost always accept, especially in the Diamond seats for the full Mercedes-Benz sponsored luxury experience. The game starts at 7:10 PM, but to take advantage of the dinner option, we need to arrive an hour early. Our business day ended at 5:30 PM but the relatively short drive from West Chester to downtown Cincinnati just to the south takes an hour due to the traffic congestion. That doesn’t leave my guests any time to change cloths and get ready, and still have time to get to the game without missing something. What I need in those situations is to go to a Uber Skyport over by the Top Golf complex with my three guests and fly down to the stadium landing at the Uber Skyport at the Banks. From there we would simply walk into the stadium and enjoy our game without any delays or traffic anxiety. And a successful day of business would be concluded in the most optimal way possible. After the game I would dial-up a Uber Elevate vehicle from my phone app which would be waiting on us at the skyport pad to take us all home. The reality of that experience is about five years away with a realistic projection date of 2023.

I watched the Uber Elevate presentation that they did this past week with great enthusiasm. When I saw that NASA was affiliated with their project I was even more impressed, finally after many years there was a viable plan to take transportation into the air where it belonged with a viable business model. Most of the technical problems have been worked out ironically with the toy drones that we can all get at Target or Wal-Mart. But these drones are just bigger and can hold passengers. The variable speed engines to provide the lift and computer-controlled adjustments that had to be made to deal with wind shears and other weather anomalies were present and it was now time to finally have an intelligent discussion about personal transportation by way of sky transport.

The Uber Elevate concept would need to be in high population areas to work well and my town of West Chester is just the perfect location for one of the opening cities. Already Uber Elevate is set to start operations in 2023 in the Dallas area and in Los Angeles. But quickly they will spread to other cities once public trust can be built with the new technology. With most of the current skycar designs there really isn’t any way that the vehicles will fall out of the sky. There are too many propellers on them to allow a vehicle to fall, the resistance of the air passing through the blades would have a kind of paper airplane effect in case of irreparable power failure. But that is a worse case scenario. In so many ways the Uber Elevate vehicles would be many times safer than a conventional car because it has upward mobility to keep it out of the trajectory of other vehicles. Riding in a Uber Elevate vehicle would be very comfortable and not violent in any way. It would be smooth and transitional from takeoff to destination landing. It would be no scarier than riding an elevator in a sky scrapper and looking out the windows once at the top levels.

Like it or not this is where transportation is going—its where it must go. There will always be a need for cars and large trucks will always be in demand to deliver goods and services. But for personal transportation from city to city or even across a large metropolis, the Uber Elevate is the best option there is. Getting from one end of Manhattan to the other is best achieved by flying over everything, not with an expensive taxi ride stuck in traffic every block of that big city. With Uber Elevate you would just walk to a building near Central Park and take the elevator up to the top floor where a Uber Elevate Skyport would be located and grab a transport to the financial district with a short five-minute flight over blocks and blocks of traffic. There is no infrastructure investment either at the ground level or underneath the city, everything would be vertical, which is the whole purpose of cities.

Even though part of the Uber Elevate presentation makes the assumption that cities will continue to grow vertically, such as in Mexico City, I can say that I don’t think people will be moving into cities—cities tend to expand outward as the tax problems of urban development pushes away wealth into the suburbs. That means that for people who work in the cities but live out in the suburbs the highway system just can’t deal with all the commerce, which is why it takes in Cincinnati an hour to drive down I-75 a mere 12 miles during rush hour. Getting to a Cincinnati Reds game from where I live is very difficult and in West Chester that is where so much business is done these days in the Cincinnati area. It’s not done downtown because it’s too difficult to get in and out of the city. But with Uber Elevate, much of that problem is solved. I can think of at least one downtown Cincinnati parking garage near City Hall just south of the Convention Center that would make a perfect Uber Elevate Skyport—and it would do big business in that location.

That means what is left to do to make all this happen is we need to get some money people together for the initial investment and we need to solve the political problems and all the regulations that currently stand in the way of making such a thing happen. The prototypes are already there and will be ready for flight by 2020. That only gives us three years to build the skyports and work out the navigational routes—for instance in the example I provided, buying the land and building skyports in both West Chester, Ohio and on the Banks in Cincinnati. Eventually of course within the subsequent years there would be hubs of skyports all around the I-275 loop, just as there would be in every big city that could transport people in and out of their cities easily and to all points around their metropolitan areas. Once that network was established then there would be city to city travel, such as from Cincinnati to Indianapolis, or Chicago to Detroit, Los Angeles to Las Vegas and so on. That is the way of the future and I am happy that we are now on the doorstep to it. Now all we have to do is open the door. I’m ready—are you?

Rich Hoffman

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The Republicans of Star Wars: Expanding the base with new voters inspired to action by fantasy meeting reality

It was good to see that two Republican politicians that are notable in Ohio politics took a moment on May 4th 2018 to honor the now official Star Wars holiday which takes place every year on that date. Jim Renacci who is running for the Senate seat in Ohio to challenge Sharrod Brown put out the press release displayed below, and Sheriff Jones put out a Tweet that was well received by Star Wars fans. It would be easy for either politician to ignore the Star Wars holiday as both men are over 60 and could plead ignorance to the cultural changes that are taking place artistically by the Disney franchise but they wisely embraced the holiday which was very smart–politically.

Good afternoon,

Today is Friday, May 4th a normal day for many, but die-hard fans of the Rebel Alliance will tell you: it’s Star Wars Day.

The first Star Wars movie to hit theaters (eventually subtitled Episode IV: A New Hope) was released in 1977, 41 years ago. Though this blockbuster franchise has existed for over four decades, career politician Sherrod Brown has worked in politics even longer, first being sworn into office in 1975.

“While Brown has lived in a political bubble for the last 44 years—never bothering to develop real-world experience—Jim Renacci has worked as an entrepreneur for the last three decades, creating more than 1,500 jobs and employing over 3,000 Ohioans.”

— Brittany Martinez, Renacci for Senate Communications Director

I’ve been writing a lot about Star Wars lately for a lot of reasons. Not only am I excited for the new Han Solo movie that is about to come out, but I can’t help but notice a number of things that are happening where politics and entertainment are coalescing together in new and unusual ways. I personally think that the new film Solo: A Star Wars Story will be one of those special movies similar to what happened when Raiders of the Lost Ark came out in 1981 and was one of those movies that everyone went to see and was a kind of unifying factor in our society culturally. Most movies that come out don’t have the potential to touch just about everyone who watches them the way that I think this Solo Star Wars film will. When Raiders came out it was a year and a half into the Reagan White House and looking back at how politics and entertainment came together to create a positive decade for America, I can’t help but notice the similarities happening now in 2018. Only I think the potential now is much greater than it was back then. So that prospect has given me great excitement. We are facing a new decade that will not only see mankind visit Mars, but there will be economic expansion that will touch literally every country in the world and their point of entry into those new opportunities will come ironically from Star Wars. People in China and India don’t watch Fox News but they will see Star Wars and be touched by it likely in some way and that will shape their politics in ways that aren’t explored under normal circumstances. But these are not normal days of political development.

I recently wrote of the nature of the Star Wars stories as being best when they are anti-authoritarian, because that was the original vision George Lucas brought to the film series. When Star Wars works best, they are anti-authoritarian art. When Star Wars fails, they are saturated with progressive politics reflective of the creative people who work in the film business. The new people running Lucasfilm and Disney these days are starting to understand that relationship through trial and error, and I think we will see those results in the new Solo: A Star Wars Story movie. Star Wars is not a form of liberal art, it’s a conservative endeavor by its very nature. Even though George Lucas meant it as a reflective form of art from the counter-culture, it was his love of old westerns and 1950s science fiction that set Star Wars apart from everything else that was being produced by Hollywood.

It is hard for liberals to look at themselves and admit that it is the Democratic Party that is all about tyranny and attempting to control people’s lives. They sold the Democratic Party to themselves as the part of civil rights and empowerment, but it was always the Republicans who truly stood for all the things that gave power to individuals and philosophically relied on smaller government to advance a country’s needs. That is why Republicans tend to love Star Wars. Even though the creative people behind Star Wars self-identify as Democrats they philosophically have been making Republican movies because the stories have always been rooted in the traditions of mid-20th Century America. The rejection by fans of elements of Star Wars since the Disney acquisition have been those Democratic elements that just don’t fit with the traditions of the old Saturday morning matinees that inspired George Lucas. Just as Disney would never have been such a massive company if it started out as a liberal enterprise, the origins of both film franchises was rooted in traditional America which Republicans represent.

This is important because if you look at the pod cast shown below where a big show was recorded in a Denny’s to celebrate the upcoming Solo: A Star Wars Story which the restaurant chain is promoting, there is a represented fan base there which I would bet are all potential Republicans, yet they don’t currently vote. If you listen to them speak, they sound like Republicans, they are certainly not collectivists, but the political party structure as it currently is does not inspire them to participate. Getting to know elements about the Star Wars movies are much more interesting to them. And I can say that there are many millions of these people out there, they are politically disconnected from the real world, but the politics of Star Wars as a functional mythology philosophically grounded in the traditions of America and being shown all over the world culturally are aligned with them. It would not take much to convince these people to vote Republican, because in so many ways they are already there.

Until Donald Trump came along Republicans allowed themselves to have their messaging controlled by the Democrats who tend to be better at marketing themselves even if they steal all the good stuff from Republicans—like civil rights, women’s rights, and small government ideas. What I see happening is now with a year and a half of Donald Trump and Star Wars really dominating the entertainment landscape, those two things are coming together in a way that should expand party affiliations in favor of the Republicans. Smart Republicans like Jim Renacci and Sheriff Jones already understand that the way to expand their party base is to reach out to Star Wars fans and get them out voting for Republicans in elections.

Even through Bob Iger at Disney is a Democrat, and Ron Howard who directed Solo: A Star Wars Story is not a Donald Trump lover, they have both done a really good job for their responsibilities in the movie business. If they behaved like liberals in their jobs, they obviously would not have done such a good job so it doesn’t take much to win them over too. The new Republican Party under the Donald Trump White House is actually something that social liberals but business conservatives could sign up to be a part of and that would truly be a unifying factor nationally. I think that’s where everything is headed in 2018 so it would be wise to make strategic alignments that would allow for some really special things to happen at this year’s midterms. There are a lot of new voters out there, and in many cases people who have never even thought about voting who could be recruited once they had the doors opened to them by a party who understands them. Republicans are the party for Star Wars fans and any candidate who wants to expand their base should do so with that understanding. While Star Wars is for kids, it has an epistemology that is rooted in American tradition for which the Republican Party best articulates, and that means that special things can happen politically if everything were aligned properly. So it made me very proud to see that Sheriff Jones and Jim Renacci are some of the first party heads to understand that real potential that exists just beyond our fingertips. We are truly in a new age and those who survive best use all the tools in the tool box, not just the ones that used to be cool—but the ones that are cool now.

Rich Hoffman

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