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“The East”: Hollywood’s take on “The Left”

Still from The East

Izzy (Ellen Page) and Benji (Alexander Skarsgard), members of the activist cell The East. courtesy Indiewire.

The East (2013)
Directed by Zal Batmangli
Scott Free Productions/Fox Searchlight Pictures

Fictional depictions of radicalism usually take one of two tacks.  First, there’s the absurdist bent, as seen in The Monkey-Wrench Gang and Fight Club. In these tales, radicalism exists within a bubble, its practitioners iconoclastic and mad and their activities largely harmless.  Even acts of extreme violence—the bombings of financial skyscrapers in Fight Club, for instance—play out as thrilling, brilliant acts, rife with revolutionary symbolism.

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