18 April 2011

Objectively awful

The movie adaptation of Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged was released this week. I've never read the book, and I'm not particularly interested in doing so (I don't read much fiction, and the book is insanely long and generally regarded as subpar literary work). But even if I were totally into Objectivism, this movie looks to be a total box office bust. It came in 14th with only $1.7 million, and the review aggregate on RottenTomatoes.com is 8%. For the record, Catwoman with Halle Berry sits at 10%. Something tells me the sequels (it's supposed to be a trilogy) ain't gonna happen.

For the record (and at the risk of inviting a long debate that I have no interest in getting into) I don't particularly love or loathe Ayn Rand, who inspires an almost cult-like adoration among her followers (I always think of the bodybuilder Mike Mentzer, who was obsessed with Objectivism). I've studied some of her philosophy and have been pretty underwhelmed. Most of the things I think she's right about were borrowed from other philosophers (like Nietzsche), and most of things that are unique to Objectivism (her views on art, morals, economics and self-actualization) are the things I think she's wrong about.

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