Mandeville, LA – Rumors of War – Starring Ben Davies, Jennifer Cooper and Eric Roberts. Directed by Tom Tomborello. Rated 4 Reagan’s
It is not often that independent films can hit their mark in the genre of thriller/sci-fi or action, Rumors of War is that rara avis that hits the target, in the bullseye and even scores big against the civil religion that is the American State while standing reverent for Christianity. Anyone who has read Butler’s Lives of the Saints, Fathers & Martyrs, from 1st century Rome to 16th century London will sympathize with Rumor’s tastefully done acts of Christian marytyrdom perpetrated by metaphorical “Beast” Eric Roberts’ character Mr Zurn’s, black clad, police-state minions. Director Tom Tomborello keeps the pace brisk and mostly foregoes the now cliched, never-ending prope fugibimus videmus romps through actions scenes with hand held cameras for cleverly placed stationary shots.
Rumors plot centers around the lives of students in an American history class at an unnamed university and their mercurial instructor Professor Deidrich. We are introduced to Deidrich and the Zurn “yes man” Lee Richardson in the film’s opening moments in Deidrich’s lecture hall. There’s a “heck yeah” speech given by Deidrich after Richardson announces that all students will be required to to have RFID devices implanted into their bodies for “the safety of all”. This is made necessary and urgent by a series of bombings that claim a military installation and a shopping mall, allegedly perpetrated by “religious zealots”. Richardson is glib about the implantation to Deidrich’s Ron Paul like stand against them. Tomborello tips his and writer Philip Abraham’s recurring theme here that “the people want it”, the “it” being the “security” allegedly brought by volunteering to have NSA (Zurn) track your every movement.
(to be continued)