Chichester Cinema, New Park,
25th International Film Festival
George Galloway stands in front of his audience, looking dapper in trilby and tailored outfit, to introduce what might be termed his personal vendetta against his, and our, former Prime Minister. The film begins, and dressed in almost identical trilby-hatted style; Mr. Galloway guides us through the life and times of Mr. Blair, puncturing every over inflated smile. Oh, and how he used to grin from ear to there, winning over what our narrator suggests would be his future allies in pre, and perhaps most importantly, post ministerial years. Watching the early footage, was a reminder of the elation that greeted the demise of the Thatcher era. We, and George, no doubt, walked the London streets the morning after Labour’s triumph with smiles as wide as Blair’s. Little did we know what lay beneath that benign, angelic, exterior. Mr. Galloway suggests; a Killer, or certainly a man capable of making a kill, or two, or…..three main atrocities; his exploits for future financial gain whilst in office, his continued hunger for wealth from whatever source ever since, and his part in the unlawful killings in Iraq.
Interview after interview, with the likes of Will Self, Clare Short, Stephen Fry, and other notable Blair Bashers, gave us more ammunition, for surely we would be the Squad to fire upon the Blindfolded Blair in the end. Or maybe, George, would lead him the Gallow(s)way. At the very least, he must be tried for war crimes, for propagating the mistruths which led to the end of Iraq as they knew it, and the beginning of Isis as we now know it, surely this will come to be. But then, what of the other George, the one of two in a Bush? Isn’t the former US President as guilty as the one our George has in his clenched hand? Blair and Bush are inseparable when it comes to the destruction of Iraq, so come on, George, extend your tour to the US, if you dare. Michael Moore, watch your back!
18 years of the Tories, and Ma Thatcher’s rule, which Britain still tries to recover from, spurred the rise of a New Labour. One, unfortunately, that was far from the ethics and ethos of the old, and one that gave birth to a wolf in sheep’s clothing, and a smile that broke a million hearts and lives. A man who now dallies with the rich, powerful, and famous, without any apparent selective process, apart from the draw of the dollar. With sister-in-law, Lauren Booth, espousing her hatred for him, Tony’s family life must be in tatters, and with Mr. Galloway escorting his film around the country like the star of a ‘Mission Possible’, I suspect Mr. Blair is sleeping very uneasily just now. This may not be the final nail, but his name is certainly on the coffin.
Final thoughts on Mr. Galloway: his stalwart ‘man of the people’ ideals of his youth have been somewhat blurred by his champagne socialist lifestyle, not to mention his cringe-worthy appearance on Celebrity Big Brother. The Killing$ of Tony Blair does go some way toward his redemption, though I fear his obsessive pursuit of retribution for all, may become a jail sentence, of a kind, for him too.
Chichester International Film Festival review by Kevin Short
Illustration Nick Victor