Have you seen the Dark Knight Rises yet? If so, feel free to continue reading. If you’ve missed it – stop reading this right now, bookmark the page, buy yourself a ticket, go see it, be amazed, and then come back and read this.
One last time: This article contains spoilers for ‘The Dark Knight Rises’…do not continue if you haven’t seen the movie….
Ok, now for those of you who have seen the movie and are big Glenn fans, you may have noticed some scenes that could have been pulled from old ‘Glenn Beck’ shows where he was warning about the dangers of the ‘Occupy’ movement. And while Glenn certainly doesn’t think the screenwriters were ripping off his ideas, they certainly seemed to understand the dangers of a socialist movement that turns violent (which history shows they usually do).
“I went and I watched Batman and I have to tell you, I would like a royalty check, please. Because if it’s not almost every monologue we’ve done in the last three years. I mean, these guys have ‑‑ whoever wrote this movie has either really ‑‑ really knows what’s going on in the world and sees the world a similar way, or they have read The Coming Insurrection. Because everything that I say is coming is happening in this movie except it’s, you know, done with a guy with a mask in a bat outfit,” Glenn said.
For example, in the movie the villain, Bane, targeted the rich and the wealthy of Gotham City with rhetoric similar to that of the Occupy Wall Street movement. He continuously refers to them as corrupt liars who are oppressing normal citizens, and in several pivotal scenes escalated that rhetoric to violence.
Early in the film, Bane and his band of mercenaries target the Gotham Stock Exchange (with portions filmed on Wall Street), and brutally assault a trader on the floor while accusing the finance workers as being the real criminals.
GPD Special Operative: This is a stock exchange. There’s no money for you to steal.
Bane: Then what are you people doing here?
Even Catwoman, who wavers back and forth between hero and villain over the course of the film, delivers lines that could have been lifted from the Occupy talking points. At a fundraiser, she tells Bruce Wayne/Batman: “You think this can last? There’s a storm coming, Mr. Wayne. You and your friends better batten down the hatches, because when it hits, you’re all gonna wonder how you ever thought you could live so large and leave so little for the rest of us.”
But it’s when the violence really ramps up halfway through the film that a moviegoer could see scenes literally lifted from Glenn’s head. As the movie gets closer to it’s final act, Bane traps the police underground, breaks open the cities prisons, and orders the citizens of Gotham to take control of their city. The rich are dragged out of their homes – the exteriors of which appear to be from affluent New York City neighborhoods - and are killed in the street or taken before kangaroo courts where they have already been found guilty. Bodies are hung in the streets as warnings not to oppose the revolution. The police are called corrupt and the prisons are emptied. The top comes down, the bottom rises up, and everything is turned inside out. The system collapses, and something sinister rises in its place. It’s as if the Occupy philosophy were violently forced into reality, with the wealthy and influential forced into hiding as Bane and his goons enforce their own version of order.
And there is one man who saw that as a possible violent phase of the “Occupy” movement.
“Capitalists, if you think that you can play footsies with these people, you’re wrong. They will come for you and drag you into the streets and kill you. They will do it. They’re not messing around,” Glenn said back in October. ” If you’re wealthy, they will kill you for what you have.”
“Once you start going for hate ‑‑ and this is what Marxists always do. They always pit people against each other classes,” he said.
At the time, Glenn compared the rising Occupy movement, and its philosophy of class warfare, with other movements with Marxist influence such as the French Revolution, the Soviet Union, and Mao.
The filmmakers of Dark Knight Rises have even said that the class warfare themes were heavily influenced by A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens’s novel on the French Revolution. And while the ideas started to form before the “Occupy” movement, the impact those themes have today are clearly heightened due to the events of the past year.
Dark Knight screenwriter Jonathan Nolan wrote:
“Chris and David [Goyer] started developing the story in 2008 right after the second film came out,” he says. “Before the recession. Before Occupy Wall Street or any of that. Rather than being influenced by that, I was looking to old good books and good movies. Good literature for inspiration… What I always felt like we needed to do in a third film was, for lack of a better term, go there. All of these films have threatened to turn Gotham inside out and to collapse it on itself. None of them have actually achieved that until this film. ‘A Tale of Two Cities’ was, to me, one of the most harrowing portrait of a relatable, recognizable civilization that completely folded to pieces with the terrors in Paris in France in that period. It’s hard to imagine that things can go that badly wrong.”
Who was it that wanted to turn things inside out? This guy:
Top down. Bottom up. Inside out. That was Van Jones’s strategy.
But Glenn predicts that were the events of ‘Dark Knight Rises’ to actually happen in America, it would be Jones playing the role of Bane.
“But there’s a point where (Bane) gives the Van Jones speech that we’ve talked about a million times. He talks about oppression. And they have taken this land. Bane’s not for America. He’s not for Gotham. He’s saying, ‘They’ve taken this great city and they have ‑‑ and they’ve turned it into a land of oppression, and I’m going to free you. And this is a symbol of the oppression,’ and he points, and behind him is the prison. It’s like Guantanamo basically. It’s all prisons,” Glenn said.
“Van Jones, I’m telling you Van Jones will be the guy that gives the Bane speech. He will. If allowed, he will give the Bane speech in front of a prison, and he’ll open up the gates. And he’ll say, ‘These guys, they were oppressed. Let them be free. You’re free. The city is about to be yours again.’ And he opens them up,” Glenn said.