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Don’t Resist The Hive Mind

27 February 2012 @ 19:37

It’s rare for me to recommend a film which can only be seen if you buy it, but such is the case with Ladd Ehlinger Jr’s Hive Mind [full disclosure: though we have never met in person, I consider Ladd one of my Friends In The Ether].

The movie landscape is filled with films produced by people who are either committed Leftists or want to strengthen their bona fides with the ‘right people’. It is, therefore, an unusual event indeed when an explicitly conservative movie is made in these days of the Left’s post-march through all of our institutions.

By ‘conservative movie’ I mean those that celebrate and/or defend the values, traditions, and history of Western Civilization. In other words, films that portray the normal and decent as good.

Often a film that we conservatives end up enjoying was not intended to do so. I think that sometimes the creators of them are too dumb to understand what they have wrought or so successfully seek to hide their subversive message in a seemingly conventional story that it gets totally lost. As with all works of art, the public will decide for itself just what a work means – it is out of the hands of the artist once it gets released.

Franklin Schaffner and Francis Ford Coppola wanted Patton to be a film that showed the General to be, ultimately, a crank, but we came out of the theater thinking otherwise.

Peter Jackson, Fran Walsh, and Philippa Boyens are your conventional soft Commonwealth Leftists, yet they could not mutilate or sufficiently dilute J.R.R. Tolkien’s traditional conservative [and Catholic] message in The Lord Of The Rings.

Hive Mind is a film made by a libertarian-leaning conservative that cannot be seen as anything other than a rousing defense of freedom and liberty and the importance of resisting Tyranny, especially that which seeks to enslave the mind.

As Ladd said on a recent interview [I paraphrase]: ‘What would happen if Rush Limbaugh were the last free man on Earth?’ That statement tells you that there’s no pussy-footing going on in Hive Mind: this filmmaker is clearly on the side of the angels.

In the tradition of Rod Serling and Gene Roddenberry, Ladd has set his film in the future where he can make points that are relevant today, but far enough removed so that, perhaps, those who might be turned off may stay to the finish.

The story centers on Doug Trench, a man who was in our time a famous conservative radio talk show host, one on a par with Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and Mark Levin. For twenty years he has been hiding in a secret bunker. The reason he went underground is because the rest of the people of the world have been absorbed into the Hive Mind, ‘a universal collective consciousness’ devoid of individuality. Back in our day, Apple release the iMind, a version of the iPhone and iPad you could swallow and, thus, become fully connected to the world at all times.

Many, especially celebrities, willingly let the iMind begin to do their thinking for them and, fairly soon, this Hive develops a collective Mind of it’s own – a gentler version of The Borg of Star Trek fame, if you will. I use the word ‘gentler’ because these Lefties don’t wage violent war. In fact, they spend a good deal of their time worrying about saving the Earth from environmental damages. Most men have been eliminated because the male of the species has a bigger carbon footprint. Oh, and no one wears clothes anymore [the film is safe for teenagers].

Doug decided to resist the Hive Mind by locking himself away in a bunker, away from the insidious clutches of the collective, but, after twenty years of being there, he has gone a bit mad, as anyone so long in solitary confinement would – but he’s not as mad as we first think.

With his supplies, especially of whiskey, running out, Doug decides to make one last radio broadcast – the last free one that will ever occur on Earth. He’s going to go out with a bang, doing what he does best. But will it be with his boots on, fighting the Hive Mind, or will he be absorbed into the collective?

The bulk of the film is taken up with Doug’s delivery of the broadcast, the content of which will cheer any conservative soul, especially those who enjoy listening to Rush or Mark Levin. Doug takes no prisoners in his verbal battles with the Left. He’s one of us, but complimented by a big dollop of broadcast excellence.

In his seeming madness, he acts as though his producer Zackster is still alive and carries on conversations with him. Through these we learn that Zackster was actually his companion at the beginning of their internal exile, but the Hive Mind got his closest friend [trivia: the picture of Zackster on the wall that Doug talks to is Ladd].

Another bit of trivia: Doug mentions in the film that Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize. The film was shot about six months before he actually did. Ladd is not only a writer, director, producer, and editor, he’s a Goddamn prophet [I am shameless].

As I said above: this film is an inspiring defense and celebration of freedom and liberty

Most such explicitly message-laden movies are boring pieces of propaganda [think Song Of Russia or Avatar or Che], but not Hive Mind. It grabs your interest from the first frame and never releases it’s grip. The suspense – will he or won’t he be absorbed by the Hive Mind – doesn’t let up until the last frame.

My only quibble is the opening sequence, which is a bit confusing in it’s unusual structure. Instead of concentrating on the montage before me, I spent some distracting time trying to get with the rhythm of the Director. After seeing my first Shakespeare play, I began to read detailed plot summaries of future ones so that this dislocation would be lessened as I got myself in-sync with the language – it worked. Unfortunately, with this type of film, to do so would ruin the suspense that I think necessary to maintain for enjoyment’s sake the first time your view it. While I did read as many reviews as I could before I watched Hive Mind, I still found the beginning jarring. But this is, as I said, a quibble, and a minor one at that. Once the credits are over, Ladd sweeps you away into the bunker and you never really look back.

One of the best compliments I can pay a film is to have no desire to pause it while I’m watching it. That means it’s so good that I don’t want to break the mood. So, I would highly recommend that you visit the necessary and raid your fridge and bar before you start the film. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride.

A word of praise for the late actor, Greg Trent, who is the star of this picture. He achieves a tough victory: making a person who, on first impression is unlikable, into a sympathetic character, one you end up cheering-on and rooting for. I would have loved to have seen Ladd and Mr. Trent work together again. Onscreen they made a crackerjack team.

You can click here to purchase a DVD of the film and I would urge you to do so for the sake of your own mental health. Doug Trench is one of us, fighting the good fight against the collective.

  1. 29 February 2012 @ 04:57 04:57

    Forgive me for going off topic with the first post, Bob, but there’s a real story breaking in Australia today about the idiot mockery directed at a courageous solder by two media cretins.
    Tim Blair – Circle Jerks.

    • thecampofthesaints permalink
      29 February 2012 @ 07:52 07:52

      I’m on it – thanks.


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