The Untold History of the United States (Oliver Stone, 2013) is a ten chapter series that examines the American government decisions of beyond its official History. Oliver Stone has always been a rigorous critic of his country’s history, creating fiction films that are connected to real events, such as Platoon (1986), Savior (1986), JFK (1991), Born on the Fourth of July (1989) and Heaven and Earth (1993), to mention but a few.

In this recent documentary series, Stone makes a detailed review of the different governmental periods of the United States, adding disturbing information about each of them. Roosevelt was the last president to make correct decisions, but he began to indebt the State with corporations that would later have a decisive importance in American public life. Henry A. Wallace could have been the most democratic president in the history of the country, but he lost to Harry S. Truman, whose obstinacy to solve everything with atomic power led to the Cold War.

In another chapter we find out how John F. Kennedy, regardless of his messianic air, was actually out of control, a man of many excess. Nixon and Kissinger’s corruptions are narrated in great detail and with shocking images, especially the change of direction that foreign American policy took to become the dictatorial invader of Third World countries. Summing up the epoch of CIA financed guerrillas fought by counter-revolutionary movements, Oliver Stone sentences: “Vietnam was the war of the First World against the Third”.

The series evinces how the institutionalization of evil —which seems to come from the interests of international enterprises that in a veiled monopolist fashion control the financial market— results in a type of malevolent many-headed entity. One of its central heads is the corrupt State that, with ever-growing cynicism, increasingly works outside the shadow, as if it were a master of ceremonies of sorts —a television show host. Faces only give this being a personality, who has global control, and whose priority is now to strip the individual of his or her most elementary rights.

With his own voice in voice over, Stone guides us through this exhaustive investigation, occasionally giving the floor to historical characters, who speak in first person when it is necessary to emphasize a given subject.

It should be noted that the script is one of the main forces of the series, something which is not coincidental: remember that in films such as Midnight Express (Alan Parker, 1978), Conan the Barbarian (John Milius, 1982) and Scarface (Brian de Palma, 1983), it was precisely this which opened Hollywood’s doors to Stone.

Due to its contradictory and juxtaposed images, the discourse is convincing from a technical point of view ––an exhaustive banquet of visions that happened throughout all those years, a type of historical sub-plot: the “making-of” official history. Here, however, since the material is mixed with scenes from classical Hollywood films, the device is not exhausted; it reminds us that the great entertainment industry has been a palliative before the anguish of History.

This historical review is a new consciousness that invites us to examine chapters of different histories from an alternative perspective. A lesson we can never have enough of, especially in our age when we seek new structuring models without paying real attention to the true mistakes of the past —which, as Stone reveals, we unfortunately continue to repeat over and over again.

The Untold History of the United States (Oliver Stone, 2013) is a ten chapter series that examines the American government decisions of beyond its official History. Oliver Stone has always been a rigorous critic of his country’s history, creating fiction films that are connected to real events, such as Platoon (1986), Savior (1986), JFK (1991), Born on the Fourth of July (1989) and Heaven and Earth (1993), to mention but a few.

In this recent documentary series, Stone makes a detailed review of the different governmental periods of the United States, adding disturbing information about each of them. Roosevelt was the last president to make correct decisions, but he began to indebt the State with corporations that would later have a decisive importance in American public life. Henry A. Wallace could have been the most democratic president in the history of the country, but he lost to Harry S. Truman, whose obstinacy to solve everything with atomic power led to the Cold War.

In another chapter we find out how John F. Kennedy, regardless of his messianic air, was actually out of control, a man of many excess. Nixon and Kissinger’s corruptions are narrated in great detail and with shocking images, especially the change of direction that foreign American policy took to become the dictatorial invader of Third World countries. Summing up the epoch of CIA financed guerrillas fought by counter-revolutionary movements, Oliver Stone sentences: “Vietnam was the war of the First World against the Third”.

The series evinces how the institutionalization of evil —which seems to come from the interests of international enterprises that in a veiled monopolist fashion control the financial market— results in a type of malevolent many-headed entity. One of its central heads is the corrupt State that, with ever-growing cynicism, increasingly works outside the shadow, as if it were a master of ceremonies of sorts —a television show host. Faces only give this being a personality, who has global control, and whose priority is now to strip the individual of his or her most elementary rights.

With his own voice in voice over, Stone guides us through this exhaustive investigation, occasionally giving the floor to historical characters, who speak in first person when it is necessary to emphasize a given subject.

It should be noted that the script is one of the main forces of the series, something which is not coincidental: remember that in films such as Midnight Express (Alan Parker, 1978), Conan the Barbarian (John Milius, 1982) and Scarface (Brian de Palma, 1983), it was precisely this which opened Hollywood’s doors to Stone.

Due to its contradictory and juxtaposed images, the discourse is convincing from a technical point of view ––an exhaustive banquet of visions that happened throughout all those years, a type of historical sub-plot: the “making-of” official history. Here, however, since the material is mixed with scenes from classical Hollywood films, the device is not exhausted; it reminds us that the great entertainment industry has been a palliative before the anguish of History.

This historical review is a new consciousness that invites us to examine chapters of different histories from an alternative perspective. A lesson we can never have enough of, especially in our age when we seek new structuring models without paying real attention to the true mistakes of the past —which, as Stone reveals, we unfortunately continue to repeat over and over again.

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