Douglas MacKinnon

Aside from belittling the film, Lee and Lowry seemed to share the same disgust that the mall in the movie was actually full around the holidays. Lee called it a mall “located in some economically vibrant fantasyland,” while Lowry said the film “should yield quickly diminishing returns after a more solid opening than most actual malls are seeing in this economy.”

Really? A quick question and point about their belief -- or insistence -- that based on the non-stop negative media narrative about the economy, the mall should be as empty in the film as they seem to think they are in real life. Do these reviewers ever step into a mall? Were they in any malls during the holidays? Are malls, like the films of Adam Sandler, Kevin James, and Rob Schneider, never seen or visited by the proletariat? Because, at least in the malls I was in during the holidays, were just as packed as the fictional mall in Paul Blart. As for that non-stop media narrative that the economic sky is falling, a top investment banker I know in London tells me that the media negativity is creating a self-fulfilling prophecy. Their reporting is contributing to and indeed fueling, some of the economic downturn.

Leaving that reality aside, the more pertinent question at the moment is, what would our nation -- or the world for that matter -- do without those who are convinced they are smarter, more refined, more well-read, and more entitled than the rest of us? If these people did not exist, would The New York Times, Variety and other media outlets simply implode? Would we really be the worse for their absence?

Different people like different films for different reasons. All should be respected. To the utter amazement and disdain of these reviewers, Paul Blart: Mall Cop has become a certified hit. Get over it. More than that, climb down from the Ivory tower from time to time and actually speak to those in line to see the movies of Adam Sandler, Kevin James, and Rob Schneider. If you do, you will find that you are speaking to a representation of the vast majority of the people in our nation.

Don’t worry. If you find it too traumatic or disgusting, you can always climb back up to your tower, take a shower, and then rip the next bourgeoisie movie that offends your lofty station in life. In the meantime, I’ll be anxiously awaiting the sequel to Paul Blart: Mall Cop.

Douglas MacKinnon

Douglas MacKinnon is a former White House and Pentagon official and author of The Secessionist States of America. (Skyhorse Publishing, 2014)

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