April 2, 2006

The tangled web

Two movies about sin: The Master Spy and Shattered Glass. One might say the sin is lying, but really lying is just one knot in a terrible tangle of betrayal and role play and unstable emotion. It is maybe better to say these are movies (both based on true stories) about lives becoming nightmares. They join some classics: Prince of the City, The Falcon and the Snowman, and the great Frontline documentaries on John Walker and on the My Lai massacre. These are close to indispensible viewing, since moral philosophy has some strong temptation to look at missteps and failures in isolation, as individual and discrete acts and traits. But I think the place to start is with portrayals of disaster. If moral philosophy is to be of any practical use, it must provide some guidance for avoiding disaster. These movies are good starting points for that meditation.

Posted by shea0017 at 11:22 PM