Hollywood's Vietnam Moment

The Return of the Paranoid Style by Ross Douthat
The Atlantic, April 2008

"Conservatives hoped that 9/11 would bring back the best of the 1940s and 1950s, playing Pearl Harbor to a new era of patriotism and solidarity. Many on the left feared it would restore the worst of the same era, returning us to the shackles of censorship and conformism, jingoism and Joe McCarthy. But as far as Hollywood is concerned, another decade entirely seems to have slouched round again: the paranoid, cynical, end-of-empire 1970s.
"We expected John Wayne; we got Jason Bourne instead."
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Jennie Rothenberg Gritz is a senior editor at The Atlantic, where she edits digital features.

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