Posts Tagged ‘Smokehouse’

The CIA and Hollywood 11 – The Men Who Stare at Goats

Published June 26th 2016

Jay Dyer joins us for this episode where we analyse the 2009 comedy The Men Who Stare at Goats, loosely based on Jon Ronson’s book of the same name. It tells the story of a journalist who is inducted into the world of psychic soldiers during the Iraq war. The movie goes on to explain some of the history behind the First Earth Battalion, an experimental Pentagon unit devoted to developing a new generation of super soldier informed by the hippy and New Age movements. We examine what the film leaves out, especially in the form of MKULTRA and similar CIA projects and experiments with similar aims, and ask whether the purpose was not to emplore ‘How could love and peace help win wars?‘ but to weaponise New Age philosophy and the New Age movement.

The CIA and Hollywood – Season 2 Linkchart

Published June 2nd 2016

We will begin releasing season 2 of The CIA and Hollywood this weekend, and to give you a taste of what’s to come we have produced a linkchart combining data and connections from both season 1 and the forthcoming season 2. New additions include The Rock, Angelina Jolie and former Sony executive Amy Pascal, along with self-confessed (though officially denied) CIA agent Chuck Barris. Much of this season’s material links up with the people and organisations we discussed in season one, including the two production companies Participant Media and Relativity Media.

The CIA and Argo – The CIA and Hollywood 07

Published May 4th 2015

Pearse and Tom round off season 1 looking at the 2012 Oscar winning historical drama Argo, which is based on a real life exfiltration operation during the Iranian revolution. We discuss the CIA’s almost too-obvious involvement in the film, the background of how the story was declassified and turned into a movie including the shadowy figures of producer David Klawans and writer Chris Terrio. We stick the boot into Ben Affleck and his film, not just for its ‘Reel Bad Arabs’ racism but also its outrageous and possibly intentional historical inaccuracy. We analyse the weirdest Oscars ceremony ever, where Argo producers Affleck, George Clooney and Grant Heslov won the Best Picture award, before wrapping up by reflecting back on season 1 of this series and briefly looking forward to season 2.

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