Friday, January 04, 2008

Pirates of Distributism

I recently watched "Pirates of the Caribbean - At World's End," and was surprised to witness a paean to Distributism. The Nine Pirate Lords are the last hold-outs against the "East India Trading Company" which is on the verge of taking control of the Seven Seas through use of the British Navy and the sin-sated Davy Jones.

Cutler Beckett -- a scum CEO-type who will make and break any deal under the pretence of "It's just good business" -- seems to have absolute control, even over supernatural forces, which he uses to his greed and power lusts. Small ownership, whether human, mythological, nautical, or supernatural, all cave to the overwhelming conglomerate.

But if this amounts to a kind of watery Distributism against the state of servility to Big Business, an undercurrent (sorry) exists too: what C. S. Lewis called (in That Hideous Strength) the Normal. Decency, civility, a recognition of fair-play, loyalty, and even the Golden Rule are known, again as per C. S. Lewis (in The Abolition of Man), when one is done unto. Lewis said that all persons have the Golden Rule embedded on their hearts. We may not practice "treating others the way we want to be treated," but all of us know when we have been ill-used, as shown in the pirates' repeated phrase, "Not fair!"

To top it off, the film gives probably the funniest depiction of purgatorial suffering shown on the silver screen, which Johhny Depp pulls off hilariously as Captain Jack Sparrow in Davy Jones' Locker.

All in all -- thumb up. Enjoy.

1 comment:

David Nybakke said...

Good show Ath. My better half and I are inviting are Franciscan priest over to view this movie. He made mention that he had enjoyed the first 2 and so we took him up on it. I am glad to see your review - and giving it thumbs up.