[Marxism] Another Film Goes Down the Tubes

Walter Lippmann walterlx at earthlink.net
Tue Oct 9 08:59:10 MDT 2007

(The author has been Granma's film critic for the past twenty years.)

October 9, 2007

Another Film Goes Down the Tubes

rolando.pb at granma.cip.cu

Tania Head’s story was perfect for the big screen, even if it was on a
subject as sensitive as the Twin Towers. Heroism, devotion to others, a
wedding ring, a boyfriend who dies trapped inside the blazing building just
days before marriage, Tania herself among the few survivors of the upper
floors above where one of the planes crashed...


Hers wasn’t the only story, but it had what it takes for the movies, real
life melodrama without the need for a Hollywood script. Only one problem
kept offers paralyzed: the image of Tania Head.

She had appeared so many times in newspapers and television that there was
no way she could be portrayed on the screen by a beauty like Diana Kruger
(Helen of Troy) or a bleached blonde Jennifer Lopez.

Hollywood looks for heroines, but more in the style of Jessica Lynch, the
beautiful soldier that inspired a film after a series of fabrications by the
US Army. The Pentagon intended to turn her into an idol of the war against
Iraq; however, Lynch not only said no, but denounced the alleged “capture
and rescue” as a publicity stunt. 

So, Tania Head’'s tale would have to wait a little longer, until her “not
very cinematographic,” plump image could be erased from the memory of
potential viewers.  And by waiting, the producers avoided repeating the
fiasco that happened with Jessica Lynch, who denounced that the US
government used her image to justify the invasion of Iraq.  

Recently the news surfaced that the story repeated for years by Tania Head,
ex-president of the World Trade Center Survivors' Network, was false. Acting
as a tour guide at “ground zero” in New York, tens of thousands people
—including Mayor Michael Blomerang and his predecessor Rudolph Giuliani—
heard her dramatic story of how while crawling through smoke and flames on
the 78th floor of the south tower, she found a dying man that gave her a
wedding ring that she later delivered to his widow. According to Tania, she
managed to escape thanks to a volunteer who put out the fire on her clothes
before going down the stairs.

“And where did you find the strength to make it downstairs, Ms Head?”
students and tourists would ask this guide capable of combining smiles and
tears in a very natural way. To which Tania would reply, “I thought about my
upcoming wedding, I was injured as I came down the stairs, but all I thought
about was my upcoming wedding. I never stopped thinking about my white
wedding dress and about my wedding with Dave (who died in the Twin Towers).

An investigation by The New York Times reporters and suspicions from her own
fellow workers helped set the record straight. Each of the details told by
Tania Head —and unconfirmed by those working with her every day, who were
reluctant to “upset her”— were false. There were neither a fiancé nor
injuries; no ring, or messages sent by people who later on would appear
among the victims. The university degrees she said claimed she had didn’t
exit, nothing was true. Even her name was a fraud. She had made it all up.

And, along with the hoax, another movie goes up in smoke as a result of
manipulation and lies. In this case, ironically linked to the downing of the
Twin Towers, an event shrouded in mystery, precisely because of manipulation
and lies at all levels.

Editor-in-Chief, CubaNews
writer - photographer - activist

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