“The Interview” from a global perspective

The Interview from a global perspective

Story by Audrey Warne, Opinion Page Editor

The Interview is a pseudo-satirical political comedy starring Seth Rogan and James Franco that lampoons the brutal dictatorship in charge of North Korea. The plot revolves around a CIA-devised plan to assassinate Kim Jong-un, North Korea’s supreme leader and the man currently responsible for the starvation and torture of millions of North Koreans. While no one is denying that North Korea is an egregious human-rights violator whose social, political, and economic policies need to change, The Interview is insulting to the millions of North Koreans who have died since the Kim family took power in 1948. North Korea threated “merciless” action against the United States and Columbia Pictures if the film was released, leading to Columbia’s parent company, Sony Entertainment, pulling the film. This led to Obama issuing a statement condemning Sony’s decision, citing America’s belief in “freedom of artistic expression.” Select theaters began showing the film on December 24th and so far it has grossed over $5.9 million at the box office and $31 million in online viewings – making it Sony’s most successful online movie. Along with being filled with the kind of crude jokes usually reserved for middle school boys, the movie’s entire premise is based around the United States’ government successful plot to murder the leader of a completely independent (and extremely anti-western) nation and filled with sanctimonious nods toward the United States. The terrorist attacks on the Parisian satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo once again brought the limits of free speech to the front of the public’s mind. People have become so obsessed with being able to say anything that they don’t stop to think if they should. Satire is supposed to incite people to make a positive change, not insult people to point where threats of war and terrorism are made. It doesn’t matter how many Voltaire quotes you post, cruel and thoughtless behavior, even under the guise of “free speech,” doesn’t make you a liberal revolutionary, it just makes you a bully. [email protected]