The Anarchist Cookbook (2002)

anarchistcookbookposter

The Anarchist Cookbook
Directed and written by: Jordan Susman
Recommended? hahaha no

It’s a good thing most of the movies about us are absolute crap and no one watches them.

What if someone took everything awful about Fight Club (the machismo and misogyny, the too-easy political nihilism, the cliche masochistic bromance) and mixed it with everything awful about SLC Punk (the oversimplification of anarchism, the obvious fact that youth doesn’t last, the yay-for-selling-out ending), amplified it, and turned it into a movie?

You’d have The Anarchist Cookbook.

The Anarchist Cookbook is the worst movie about anarchists that has ever been made. Some movies misunderstand us (SLC Punk). Some movies vilify us (El Bosc). Some movies condescend to us (The East, No God, No Master). This movie intentionally warps our words and practices, alternately mocking us and reviling us.

My guess is he hung out with some anarchists and no one slept with him (can’t imagine why) and he took it personally.

It seems obvious to me that this is a personal grudge on the part of the filmmaker. My guess is he hung out with some anarchists and no one slept with him (can’t imagine why) and he took it personally. The filmmaker clearly knows enough about us to know where to try to jab us.

The film has: sleeping in college libraries, flying signs, anti-fur protests, a treesitter discussing how to dispose of human waste up in a tree, scamming food from fast food joints by complaining about a fictitious order, arguments about how it’s not violent to fight against a violent system, an anarchist bookstore, and little pithy signs like “there are no rules but smoking is prohibited” and one that says “there’s no private property, but this is close to it” over a guys journal. Yup, I’ve seen all of that. It even has a grown man who uses anarchist rhetoric to justify his sexual attraction to children — a jab at Hakim Bey you’d have to be at least tangentially present in the anarchist scene to know to make.

The anarchists’ mantra is a mix-mash of misunderstood quotes, “property is theft and destruction is creation,” combined with some shit from left field like “only sex and love are commodities.”

In the first half of the movie, the main conflict is how the protagonist can’t get laid. He’s in love with his friend the promiscuous misandrist, who uses sex as a weapon. Her life-ruining slutty ways are contrasted with the promiscuous male character’s ways. It straight up says that how unlike the woman-slut, who hates men, the man-slut “loves” women. Yet he treats getting laid as conquest and it’s best when women don’t even speak a word of english. It doesn’t get better from there.

In the second half of the movie, the main conflict is how the nihilist has taken over, addicted everyone on hard drugs, and allied with numerous white supremacist gangs to spike trees and burn down the black student union.

Yup.

Good thing the protagonist has a republican girlfriend who teaches him that the republican party are the true bastions of liberty and responsibility.

Good thing the protagonist has a republican girlfriend who teaches him that the republican party are the true bastions of liberty and responsibility, so he turns in the nihilist, collects a bunch of reward money, and hitchhikes off into the sunset.

The last thing he does is refuse the advances of a gay redneck.

That’s why The Anarchist Cookbook is the worst anarchist movie ever made. I guess that’s fitting, what with name and everything.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.