Liberty at the Movies: Best of 2018

Better late than never, here are the first five of the top ten movies of 2018:

1. Avengers: Infinity War— The Godfather of comic book movies. This film features almost all of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s heroes— Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, Hulk, Spider-Man, Scarlet Witch, the Guardians of the Galaxy (it’s not just the best Avengers movie but also the best Guardians movie), Dr. Strange, Black Widow, and Black Panther.

The filmmakers handled the task of juggling these heroes by focusing on the villain Thanos, whose quest to obtain all six Infinity Stones so he can wipe out half of the galaxy’s population drives the film. Thanos is actually part of a long and dishonorable intellectual tradition-Malthusianism. Named after its creator economist Thomas Malthus, this is the idea that population growth must be limited, otherwise excessive population will deflate our resources. Malthusianism has been disproven by free-market economists who have demonstrated that resources are not finite, and overpopulation is only a problem when governments don’t allow the market to work.

The film is nonstop action ride that had me on the edge of my seat.

Buy Infinity Wars here and help Campaign for Liberty.

2. Black Panther— “can a good man be a king?” Well in the movies they can. Black Panther is one of the MCU’s best solo films. Like many recent offerings for Marvel it’s villain, Killmonger, has a point as he challenges the African kingdom of Wakanda’s decision to remain isolated from the problems of oppressed people rather than help lift them out of poverty. The film ends on an optimistic note as the lead character embraces the idea that he should help the world via trade and voluntary aide rather than through militarism. Shame Thanos screwed all that up.

Buy Black Panther here and help C4L.

3. Creed 2– Sylvester Stallone plays Rocky for the eighth time in this sequel to Creed. This one is a sequel of sorts to Rocky 4 (the one where Rocky won the Cold War) as Adonis Creed (Apollo’s son) fights Drago—the Russian antagonist of Rocky 4’s son. Great take on the relationship between fathers and sons as well as a look into how athletics suffer from the politicization of sport.

Preorder your copy of Creed 2 here.

4. Roman J Israel— A compelling look at the changes and temptations facing someone who spent his whole life fighting for the cause and then finds himself tempted to betray his principles for personal gain. Another great performance by Denzel Washington as the afflicted public interest lawyer. There is also a great scene where the lead character has a confrontation with some “woke” college students who have no patience with his failure to obey modern PC protocols.

Buy Roman J Israel here.

5. The Post— From the time when the mainstream media stood up to the imperial presidency and the deep state. The Post tells the story of the Washington Post’s internal struggle over whether to publish the Pentagon Papers, leaks documenting how government officials knew Vietnam was a losing war yet continue to claim the war was winnable.

The film receives stellar performances by Meryl Streep as Washington Post publisher Kay Graham and Tom Hanks as Post editor Ben Bradlee. What I enjoyed is the conflict Graham and Bradlee feel knowing they missed the story of Vietnam because they were too close to the corrupt establishment that sent young men—many of whom were forced into “service” by the daft war knowing they were fighting, killing, and idling for a lost cause—whereas they are now willing to look at the war because they do not like the administration in power. This theme resonates today, as we see the mainstream media stoking the flames of Cold War II because of their never Trumpism.

Buy The Post here.

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