Today’s world can be really ugly. Talking politics has the high likelihood of turning volatile among family, friends or co-workers quickly. Whether you support the president or not, everyone has an opinion on him.
Many are so entrenched in their beliefs, both liberals and conservatives, that they are unable to see their faults. Surprisingly a 1995 movie titled “The Last Supper” does exactly that and it rings true to this day.
The dark comedy stars Cameron Diaz, “Black Hawk Down” star Ron Eldard, Courtney B. Vance and Ron Perlman and focuses on highlighting the flaws with both conservatives and liberals through a fantastical plot. Five graduate students accidentally end up killing a Neo-Nazi at the start of the film and as a result, they come to the conclusion that taking those who harbor hate out of the world by killing them is a justifiable act.
They stand on the moral high ground of killing ultra-conservatives claiming they are making the world a more accepting fate. Throughout the film, they equate it to the philosophical question of if you could kill Hitler before he rose to power, would you do it?
It is easy to say the film criticizes conservatives much harsher than they do liberals given their uses of hardline conservative caricatures. There’s the Neo-Nazi, a gay-hating priest and a rape apologist to name a few. It’s an extreme example and surely doesn’t say that all conservatives are like this but does bring up the question of what the extreme far-right brings to the table. Before conservatives take to their keyboards to rip this film apart though, it’s criticism of liberals is just as harsh but simply more nuanced.
It reveals the moral high-ground that liberals commonly stand on while arguing and how given they think they are always the smarter and more caring side, they are justified. Throughout the film, the five constantly argue that what they are doing is just because of the possibility of the murdered right-wingers’ potential to do evil.
It brilliantly shows that through preaching they the defense of tolerance, they are in fact committing the same crime they are killing to prevent. It shows the hypocrisy that is prominent among liberal discussion in the current landscape.
The movie doesn’t go out of its way to say conservatives are bad people or liberals are murdering hypocrites. Its main point is that both sides hate each other so much that it ultimately leads to the defeat of their main arguments that hold merit.
It points to this being fanned by the media that panders to their drive to hate the other side and why we shouldn’t always believe those who are the loudest and ardent defenders of our views we see on TV.
Mostly, the movie forces the viewer, conservative or liberal, to recognize the extremities of whichever side they align with and may even have traces of themselves and just how ridiculous they are.
The film is low-budget and short and certainly not a masterpiece of cinematography, editing or score but its message is interesting enough and the comedy has the quality that makes “Last Supper” worth a watch.