[ by Charles Cameron — Keith Oatley’s theatre as simulation that runs on minds applied v briefly to two Ezekiel narratives ]
Here’s the transcript of a conversation in a car between FBI Agents Shane Daughtry and Eve Rearden, from the 2011 movie Jerusalem Countdown, based loosely on Pastor John Hagee‘s book of that name:
EVE: We have information that the CIA has been investigating certain Biblical or apocalyptic events.
SHANE: Whoa, whoa. Are you kidding me?
EVE: I haven’t been able to wrap my head around it either but apparently recent world events have been fitting right into what is known as the Ezekiel war scenario.
SHANE: What is the Ezekiel war scenario? Eve?
EVE: According to the Hebrew prophet, Ezekiel, in the Last Days the people of Persia, which is, of course, Iran, and the people of Gog or Rosh, which many believe to be Russia, form an alliance whose main purpose is to obliterate Israel.
This is fiction, loosely based on scripture and adapted to politics — apocalyptic scri-fi, if you will, and not very good scri-fi at that. Joel Rosenberg does the genre much better.
Recommendation: do not run this film as any kind of a simulation of future history!
For a second shoe, we have John Malkovich‘s directorial debut, a brilliant movie titled The Dancer Upstairs, based on Nicholas Shakespeare‘s book of the same name…
What catches my eye here is the suave urbanity of Javier Bardem‘s policeman dealing with the crude and brutal folk-religious ideological underpinnings of the revolutionaries, in this case syncretic with the “Fourth Wave” Marxism of Sendero Luminoso.
This is terrorism fiction at its best, or close to it — Ann Patchett‘s 2001 novel, Bel Canto, richly brocaded around the 1996 hostage crisis at the Japanese embassy in Lima, Peru, would probably be my first pick — simply because the prose is so gorgeous, such poetry.
Recommendation: run this one! The Dancer Upstairs…
But hold on, The Dancer Upstairs deserves a post or three of its own, and I’ll be back for those two screenshots once enthusiasm overcomes fatigue…