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Oswald's Ghost - NYC Documentary Screening


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I have access to two free tickets to the following event. If anyone lives nearby and would like to attend, please send me email and I will send you instructions to redeem them.

The Museum of Television & Radio is hosting a special advanced screening of a new documentary about the legacy of the JFK assassination, called "PBS American Experience: Oswald's Ghost."

There will be a special advance screening and discussion on Thursday, June 14; 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.

Acclaimed director Robert Stone (Guerrilla: The Taking of Patty Hearst) offers an unprecedented deconstruction of the myths and controversy surrounding the most debated murder mystery of all time-the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Stone uses a wealth of archival material-and interviews with Gary Hart, Tom Hayden, Mark Lane, and others-to chronicle America's forty-year obsession with the defining event of a generation, while creating provocative parallels to 9/11 and its aftermath.

In Person:

Robert Stone, Director, Producer, Writer

Edward Jay Epstein, Author

Todd Gitlin, Professor of Journalism and Sociology, Columbia University

Cost: $25, $15 MTR members

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The Museum of Television & Radio is hosting a special advanced screening of a new documentary about the legacy of the JFK assassination, called "PBS American Experience: Oswald's Ghost."

There will be a special advance screening and discussion on Thursday, June 14; 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.

In Person:

Robert Stone, Director, Producer, Writer

Edward Jay Epstein, Author

Todd Gitlin, Professor of Journalism and Sociology, Columbia University

J. Raymond Carroll, Senior Correspondent for The Education Forum

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Guest Gary Loughran
The Museum of Television & Radio is hosting a special advanced screening of a new documentary about the legacy of the JFK assassination, called "PBS American Experience: Oswald's Ghost."

There will be a special advance screening and discussion on Thursday, June 14; 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.

In Person:

Robert Stone, Director, Producer, Writer

Edward Jay Epstein, Author

Todd Gitlin, Professor of Journalism and Sociology, Columbia University

J. Raymond Carroll, Senior Correspondent for The Education Forum

A well earned promotion, I look forward to your report.

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The Museum of Television & Radio is hosting a special advanced screening of a new documentary about the legacy of the JFK assassination, called "PBS American Experience: Oswald's Ghost."

There will be a special advance screening and discussion on Thursday, June 14; 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.

In Person:

Robert Stone, Director, Producer, Writer

Edward Jay Epstein, Author

Todd Gitlin, Professor of Journalism and Sociology, Columbia University

J. Raymond Carroll, Senior Correspondent for The Education Forum

A well earned promotion, I look forward to your report.

I attended a showing of the film tonight at the William S Paley Museum of Radio and Television in Beverly Hills. The name of the place was appropriate as the film took a turn in its second half (the first half was very good) and took an incredibly wrong turn at the end. (Paley was of course the guiding light behind CBS' shoddy investigations in the 60s.) Bottom line (mouthed by a seemingly senile Norman Mailer): Oswald acted alone because he wanted to become famous and welcomed a trial so he could represent himself and preach to the world. (OH yeah, then why did he try to get away and fight cops afterwards, taking a chance he'd get killed? That's sure a strange way of welcoming a trial.)

Afterwards there was a discussion featuring the director Robert Stone and former Senator Gary Hart, moderated by Josh Mankiewicz, son of Frank Mankiewicz. Josh said he likes the movie so this probably means he's a recent convert to the LN cause. The director's stated purpose: to show how conspiracy theories have been an incredible distraction for the left, and have kept the sixties generation from achieving its promise. Senator Hart said he found the timing of the CIA/Mafia collaboration against Castro, and the subsequent timing of the deaths of Giancana and Rosselli (although he got the order of their deaths wrong) suspicious, and that as a result he could never be satisfied that Oswald acted alone for purely personal reasons. After the director chimed in that the HSCA confirmed the findings of the WC exactly, but that they'd been confused by the dictabelt evidence, I pointed out that this was not true, and that Stokes told Face the Nation the dictabelt evidence only confirmed what they'd already suspected due to Ruby's proximity to organized crime. I also pointed out that Rosselli had connected the assassination attempts on Castro with the Kennedy assassination shortly before he was murdered. A number of other nay-sayers followed, including David Lifton, whose presence in the audience and objections to the film caused the film maker to laugh. He was actually pretty rude to Lifton, telling Lifton "I'm well aware of how much money you made off your book" (or something like that) after Lifton mentioned that his book was a best seller. Thereafter, a history teacher chimed in that he liked the movie and found all the conspiracy theories off target, and the director of the 1964 film Four Days in November chimed in that Oliver Stone's film was a lie from beginning to end. I'd say that 20 people spoke from the audience, 12 complaining, and 8 applauding.

Outside in the lobby, after the showing, Lifton and I tried to talk sense to Stone and point out that he overlooks a lot of the evidence. He said "you win" and "My film is not about the assassination, it's about the effect the assassination has had on our society." I tried to be conciliatory and agreed that since the film is called Oswald's Ghost, and features Norman Mailer, I suppose he had to end with Mailer's conclusions, but that he should have said something at the beginning or end, such as "Based on Oswald's Ghost by Norman Mailer." He quickly corrected me, however, and insisted that the conclusions of the film are purely his own. Since he'd opened up his discussion with the standard Bugliosi ploy "How many of you believe in the Warren Report?" (to which no one raises their hand) followed by "How many of you have seen JFK?" (to which everyone raises their hand) and then asked "Now how many of you have read the Warren Report?" (To which a good 30 percent of the crowd raised its hand and shocked the heck out of him) I turned the tables and asked him if he'd read anything from the last twenty years, in particular books based on the recently released documents such as Larry Hancock's Someone Would Have Talked. He said no and smirked a little and expressed no interest in Larry's book. He looked at me like I was the most pathetic creature on Earth. At this point Lifton pointed out that he didn't have anything about the critics post Josiah Thompson's Six Seconds in Dallas (the film does nevertheless get a dig in at Groden, and shows him selling his stuff on the knoll, with a close-up of money changing hands). Stone responded by reiterating that his movie is about how the assassinations of the sixties, along with the misguided conspiracy theorists, helped cripple the left. As far as he was concerned, the investigation of the assassination stopped when Jim Garrison spewed some nonsense about Jack Ruby's phone number, and everything since has just been a distraction.

If you're a CT who wants to avoid the agony of watching old men spewing nonsense, you might want to avoid this movie.

I find it most interesting that PBS is pushing this film at the same time that HBO is getting behind Bugliosi. There's definitely something in the air and it's not marijuana from Tommy Chong's bong.

Edited by Pat Speer
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Sounds like it is the same documentary that was shown on British television a few weeks ago on the BBC Four channel. It had some footage I'd never seen before so was interesting in that respect but was disappointed in the rest of the programme as I had expected to be. I notice they used Priscilla Macmillan a lot as some kind of expert on Oswald's character but didn't mention her ties to the CIA......

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I find it most interesting that PBS is pushing this film at the same time that HBO is getting behind Bugliosi. There's definitely something in the air and it's not marijuana from Tommy Chong's bong.

I will whiff the air at tonight's New York screening. If Tommy Chong is not around, then I will know that the sweet, sticky smell is not from the felicitous herbal tincture that made the sixties bearable for so many, but from the vile weed of propaganda that still poisons our air in the aftermath of 11/22/63.

I found something on the web that says that Robert Stone's documentary first aired on the BBC. I have been aware, from a young age, that the BBC is the most experienced and sophisticated propaganda apparatus in the world.

William Paley & PBS are still playing catchup.

QUOTE

Oswald's Ghost

Tue 5 June

10.30pm BBC4

A documentary by Robert Stone examining the mythologies and controversy that have stemmed from the JFK assassination. Norman Mailer, Gary Hart, Tom Hayden and Edward J Epstein contribute their views on how the shooting led to a decade of political paranoia and the demise of political idealism in America. UNQUOTE

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I notice they used Priscilla Macmillan a lot as some kind of expert on Oswald's character but didn't mention her ties to the CIA......

I will keep an eye out for Priscilla.

Here is the only online review so far as I could find:

FindArticles > Deseret News (Salt Lake City) > Jan 19, 2007 > Article > Print friendly

Director avoids position on JFK assassination

Susan Whitney Deseret Morning News

Filmmaker Robert Stone was 5 years old when President John F. Kennedy died in Dallas. As he recalls, he already knew who President Kennedy was.

But Stone was so little then. He can't be certain what he knew about ideas such as "government" or "president." Maybe he didn't really know anything about his country before Nov. 22, 1963.

Maybe he learned it all that day: that he lived in a place called the United States of America; that America had a president named Kennedy; that Kennedy was shot and then he was dead.

If Stone is sure of one recollection, he is sure of what he saw on Nov. 24, 1963. He says his earliest memory of watching anything on television is watching Jack Ruby shoot Lee Harvey Oswald. Stone remembers seeing Oswald crumple.

In Stone's new documentary, ""Oswald's Ghost,"" we see that scene several times. We see Oswald fall.

We see the president's motorcade, too, over and over again. The convertible gliding into view. The two people in the back seat. The handsome man slumping toward his wife. Her pink suit. Her desperate scramble.

"Oswald's Ghost" will play in Salt Lake City tomorrow, and Stone will be there to discuss the film afterward. The documentary has just been released, and he'll go on the road with it after his appearance in Utah. When Stone spoke with the Deseret Morning News from his home in New York, he noted that it was the first time he'd talked with a reporter about "Oswald's Ghost."

Stone's documentary is history at its most basic. There is no narrator -- just the standard blend of historical footage and talking experts. Stone reviews what happened that day and what has happened in the more than 40 years since, letting those who believe there is still an unsolved conspiracy have their say.

We hear from politicians, including Tom Hayden and Gary Hart. We hear from Mark Lane, an attorney who went on to write a book about the assassination. Lane thought Oswald might be innocent from the beginning. (In his first TV appearance, Oswald had a bruised face, said he'd been accused of killing a policeman and asked for an attorney.)

We hear from author Norman Mailer and journalists Hugh Aynsworth and Dan Rather. They emerge as relatively unbiased observers -- although to Stone's credit he doesn't make anyone look wacky.

The now-deceased New Orleans district attorney Jim Garrison does come off as homophobic. But even Garrison could have looked worse, if Stone had included some more detrimental information, which he had.

Stone told the Deseret Morning News that Mailer was the one person he interviewed for this film who had had the intellectual honesty to change his mind about the assassination. Mailer set out to write a book about who hired Oswald, and he spent years searching for clues, including doing research about Oswald's time in Russia. Eventually Mailer concluded there was no conspiracy.

Within the film, Stone doesn't seem to take a position. For him, he says, the film is about political paranoia. Before JFK died, paranoia was the prerogative of the right. Then it became the prerogative of the left. Today, fully 70 percent of Americans think Oswald did not act alone.

Stone intends "Oswald's Ghost" to be a history lesson for the generations that weren't born by 1963. And he thinks the baby boomers will find it interesting to review the events as well.

Stone said he was surprised at how many new details he was able to find. For example, his film includes tapes of Dallas police- radio conversations in the moments after JFK was shot. As the film shows the Secret Service speeding the president toward the nearest hospital, dispassionate voices describe JFK's head wounds.

November 1963 shaped Stone's view of his country and of America's ability to keep her citizens safe. He thinks today's children have been equally affected by 9/11, by seeing planes flying into tall buildings.

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I notice they used Priscilla Macmillan a lot as some kind of expert on Oswald's character but didn't mention her ties to the CIA......

I will keep an eye out for Priscilla.

Here is the only online review so far as I could find:

FindArticles > Deseret News (Salt Lake City) > Jan 19, 2007 > Article > Print friendly

Director avoids position on JFK assassination

I'd read that review before. Before the movie. Mankiewicz made the comment that the film is even-handed and takes no viewpoint. To his credit, Stone scoffed and said something like "I don't know how you can say that, as my viewpoint is readily apparent." Stone was right, it is. As the mainstream media sees this film as unbiased (even though it paints Garrison as a wacko without offering anything in his defense) the contention of the writer of the review, Mankiewicz, and no doubt PBS and the BBC that this film is unbiased is indicative of their own bias. They HONESTLY BELIEVE that the sixties was derailed by a bunch of conspiracy nonsense, and that nothing of relevance about the question of conspiracy has been uncovered since the 70s. (The film made no mention of the ARRB and the director said something like "Stone should be commended for getting ALL the documents released and proving that nothing was being hidden.") The doddering old director of Four Days in November actually stood up and reminded the audience last night that only loners and wackos kill public figures in the U.S. Of course, no one was allowed to reply to him and point out that Oswald's behavior was not remotely similar to the behavior of Guiteau and the others, and that the attempts on Lincoln and Truman had been conspiracies.

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There will be a special advance screening and discussion on Thursday, June 14; 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.

I swear I thought today was Thursday, so I showed up at the museum tonight (Wednesday) only to have my calender re-calibrated.

I hope it doesn't have anything to do with this:

http://www.nypost.com/seven/05042007/enter...ou_lumenick.htm

(best movie since Dr. Zhivago).

I can't make it Thursday night, so thank you Duke, the tickets are once again yours to bestow.

Edited by J. Raymond Carroll
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I can't make it Thursday night, so thank you Duke, the tickets are once again yours to bestow.

Well, I guess if nobody asks for them - the "email line" hasn't been overly long! - I guess they won't get used. I'm just plain ol' not flying to NYC for this, period, end of text!

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I'm just plain ol' not flying to NYC for this, period, end of text!

Since New York in June doesn't suit the Dukester, I have arranged two free tickets for Duke and a guest to watch the Australian premiere of Oswald's Ghost at the Perth International film festival in July.

http://www.revelationfilmfest.org/index.cf...809B0FDEF313ED9

The tickets can be collected at the box office.

Cheers, Matie.

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I'm just plain ol' not flying to NYC for this, period, end of text!

Since New York in June doesn't suit the Dukester, I have arranged two free tickets for Duke and a guest to watch the Australian premiere of Oswald's Ghost at the Perth International film festival in July.

http://www.revelationfilmfest.org/index.cf...809B0FDEF313ED9

The tickets can be collected at the box office.

Cheers, Matie.

It's not that NYC doesn't suit (I'm originally from that general area), it's that air fares and gas prices don't, especially this late in the game. Even bereavement fares (over the death of conspiracy theories?) don't help to make it worthwhile. Australia next month however ...? Hmmm ....

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