VIA William Brandon Shanley
Hello Friends, Family, Associates, and Citizens--
One of America's most popular films was Back To The Future---the idea that what's to come was visible in the past. In New Hampshire's Republican primary, some political leaders advocated grounding our politics in the Magna Carta (of 1297) not just the American Constitution because of its universal principles.
I am William Brandon Shanley, a New Haven based filmmaker with deep philosophical leanings who believes that to understand the fundamental conflicts of our times, we need to appreciate the brilliance of an all but forgotten thinker of an earlier era, Dante Alighieri, a poet and moral philosopher whose Divine Comedy took his readers on a provocative, even unforgettable, journey through what he called "The Inferno" (what we call Hell), "The Purgatory" and "Paradise" to create a world based on the highest aspirations of humankind--reason, philosophy, science, technology, and love--that has eluded generation after generation of Americans and people around the world.
Dante's work was prophetic and became one of the great works of world literature. But, I and my collaborator, the incisive Webster Griffin Tarpley, an economic historian, author and frequent TV commentator, believe it is also a guide to understanding the major wars, depressions, genocide, assassinations, starvation, and death by preventable diseases that have plagued humankind from then till now.
Our fact-based "Back to the Future" explores and acts out, in a modern docudrama style, all of these issues against a 700 year background. It's a reality sweep that leads us through the Hundred Years War, the Black Death, the Thirty Years War, the British East India Company, the War of 1812, the Opium Wars, the creation of Marxism, the American Civil War, the assassination of Lincoln, World Wars I & II... the Vietnam War, the assassination of JFK and other progressives of the 60's, 9/11, the War on Terror.
Most documentaries focus on single events, but America's Divine Comedy connects hidden dots and causal weaves to show the connections, in a larger and deeper frame, between where we have been and where we are going.
We do this by creatively exploring human psychopathy to find patterns that bring our dark past into our emerging future, by unearthing and explaining suppressed facts, missing links, and documentary evidence.
We show how a "dynasty of death" migrated from Medieval Venice to England in the early 1600's and slowly came to America in the early 1900's. Its mindset that can only be called "evil" then infiltrated US institutions and is rapidly transforming our own country from a democratic republic into a what is raipdly becoming a fascist-style empire.
America's Divine Comedy is a thoughtful and artistically edited collage combining dramatic performance of significant highlights of The Divine Comedy, motion picture and news clips, 700 years of music and art inspired by the Divine Comedy, as well as dialogue excerpts with more than 30 notable and brilliant Americans, including Noam Chomsky, Russ Baker, James Bamford, Hedrick Smith, Helen Thomas, Danny Schechter, Walter Pincus, Robert Parry, Chris Hedges, Ralph Nader, Peter Dale Scott, David Ray Griffin, and many others.
Few films even attempt to present a serious if fast paced chronology on this scale that fuses history and current affairs. It is destined to be an eye-opening and unforgettable story that will challenge the conventional wisdom and raise our awareness to a new level.
I have been making this film for four years while speaking to many of our top intellectuals, journalists and even conspiratologists. When you search for a new synthesis you can't limit yourself to talking the same predictable path that many filmmakers have taken before.
We believe, as journalists, that to get at deeper truths, we have to go deeper than journalism!
I want the audience to be surprised, even amazed, by a rich new layered look at the origins of our current crisis. When was the last time that you saw a film that blew your mind and punctured your safe assumptions about where our world is headed? I want this film to intrigue, and engage.
Making America's Divine Comedy has been more than a labor of love. We have been raising money on line and in person to finish the film this year. I'm trying to raise $15,000 to make possible the completion of my four year effort, I am sure many know how tough it is working on an independent project of significant historical and contemporary value without financial support.
You can help. If you're ready to see history and contemporary reality in presented in wholly new way, will you help us complete our work and get the message out by supporting our IndieGoGo Crowd Funding Campaign?
If you're not able to support our campaign, will you kindly consider helping us get the word out by circulating this message widely to your network of friends?
Will you help us tell this largely suppressed story? You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org and 203-497-9334 if you want more information.
William Brandon Shanley
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