This, my dear readers, is a very important week for me. Not one, but two of my favorite shows are having their series premieres! My beloved “Supernatural” premieres on October 8 and the spectacular “The Walking Dead” on October 13. I am very much looking forward to crying over attractive people covered in blood and dealing with the apocalypse again. Apologies to my roommate Aviva; she has had to deal with my jumping up and down/hyperventilating/making weird noises/general fangirling for the past few days.
On to the topic of the day: does everyone know what this weekend was? Tufts Homecoming! I know that all of my fellow students were out having good, clean fun on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. I’m sure they’ll be thanking every deity that there is no class on Monday after a weekend full of such, ahem, festivities.
Yes, friends, this Monday we celebrate the man who began the trend of colonialism and instigated the disenfranchisement and demise of an entire race: Christopher Columbus. All of America receives a day off from work to ruminate on the contributions of racism, guns, and smallpox blankets to the modern United States. If you have a headache or feel nauseous for whatever reason on Monday and want to avoid your workload, I invite you to take the time to appreciate Columbus Day through the wonderful medium of film.
I have compiled a list of some lovely movies celebrating the wonder that is colonialism in honor of that revered Italian explorer. I am proud to present “The Best Movies to Watch on Columbus Day”:
1. The Mission, starring Jeremy Irons and Robert De Niro. This film focuses on a Jesuit priest (Irons) and a former conquistador (De Niro) fighting to protect a remote Latin American Indian tribe from falling under the rule of Portugal. If you’re looking for a feel-bad yet educational movie about why white people suck, this is your film. I first saw it when I was fifteen, and I cried hysterically for about half an hour after finishing it. It will make you want to go back in time just to punch Christopher Columbus in the face and stop him from ever discovering the Americas. In all seriousness though, it is an awesome movie.
2. Pocahontas. After you’re done crying over The Mission and feel in the mood for some catchy music and historical fallacy, this is the thing to watch. You get all the fun of colonists marginalizing native peoples in a selfish quest for gold, plus some lovely romance and animation. If you can get past the fact that the real Pocahontas was like ten when she reportedly saved John Smith, then it’s a fun watch. If you say you don’t feel in commune with nature when Pocahontas sings “Colors of the Wind,” you are a liar.
(Here’s “Colors of the Wind” for your lip-syncing pleasure.)
3. Avatar, starring Sam Worthington and Zoe Saldana (come on, like you’ve never heard of the highest grossing movie of all time). This is actually a beautiful representation of the evils of colonialism, shown in the form of cool special effects and weirdly attractive blue people. An evil corporation attempts to conquer and destroy another planet’s peaceful people in order to exploit their resources! Christopher Columbus would be proud.
4. The Patriot, starring Heath Ledger and Mel Gibson before he went publicly insane. We honor American colonialism by watching Heath Ledger be attractive and fight the British. It is our patriotic duty to do so (forgetting the ironic fact that both Gibson and Ledger are actually Australian).
That should give all of you hungover—I mean, sick—procrastinators something to do while you avoid your work. This has been the first of many themed blog posts to come telling you what movies to watch during every holiday, obscure or otherwise. I can’t wait to tell you what I recommend for people who get scared easily on Halloween. Until then, I have some Winchesters to swoon over.