Alamo

Did anyone catch this? Had to miss it due to some scheduling conflicts.

Everything I’ve read points to it being terrible.

BoxOfficeMojo is reporting this cost $100 million to make, but only grossed $9 million last weekend! OUCH!

Am I the only person who finds the mythologizing and pride in land theft inexplicable? Especially when we lost? Maybe there’s a parallel to slavery there.

On a more serious note, it’s really funny how little actual facts you learn about Texas history growing up in Texas. The average high schooler there would tell you everyone at the Alamo was killed before surrendering, we did not steal the entire state, etc., etc.

McCullough- So the Mexicans, they deserved that land because they “stole” it from the Native Americans first?

Equating a war of expansion with slavery reflects something about the historical education of today, but I’m not sure what.

This just in: “The Alamo” bombs hard enough to turn the heat up on Eisner:

http://news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/nm/20040412/us_nm/media_disney_dc

So the US, which stole its land from the Native Americans, deserve its land if someone tries to steal it?

And that’s the most charitable interpretation. At the time we took the state (yeah, yeah, I know it was independent for a while, but it was founded entirely by US citizens, so in a broader context it was basically the US establishing a buffer state), Mexico actually had a better moral claim to the land than the US did, because it never had significant European immigration, and the post-revolution government wasn’t controlled by immigrants. Europeans are a whopping 9% of its population today; I’d imagine they were much less back then:

http://www.kmike.com/country/mxdemog.htm

To boot, the US colonists’s complaints to the central Mexican government are just strange:

http://www.lsjunction.com/events/conv1832.htm
http://www.lsjunction.com/events/conv1833.htm

I’m not wanting to start some huge political argument (I think you can theoretically justify the Texan revolution based on constitutional principles in Mexico, but it’d be a stretch, and most significantly, no one makes this argument), but taking pride in either the Alamo or the Texan revolution is very strange based on the facts of what happened. I think that so many people do is a result of the conscious myths distributed about it.

Just exactly what the fuck are you talking about? Perchance tell me how the Texans “stole” the state, or the US, if you are talking about them in the “we.” And how the hell would you know what an average Texas high schooler would know? Oh wait, you grew up here. Obviously you didn’t learn very much either way.

For someone who didn’t want to start a political argument, you surely could have done better by just saying it’s Bush’s fault and the Mexicans had WMDs.

And that’s the most charitable interpretation. At the time we took the state (yeah, yeah, I know it was independent for a while, but it was founded entirely by US citizens, so in a broader context it was basically the US establishing a buffer state), Mexico actually had a better moral claim to the land than the US did, because it never had significant European immigration, and the post-revolution government wasn’t controlled by immigrants.

Man oh man, are you way off the deep end of the pool here. Texas was founded by essentially ex-pats, and had asked to join the Union. Just because it was founded by Americans doesn’t make it any kind of buffer state whatsoever, the US government had nothing to do with it.

How the hell do you figure who had the right over Texas by the amount of European population in the government or the amount of immigration by Europeans? I’ve never even heard of this used as a justification for anything. Let’s not forget, the ruling classes and well-to-do of Mexico are Spanish in heritage, not Mexican (Indian).

The only moral justifcation Mexico had was that Texas was taken from them by force (by the Texans), and they negotiated a settlement of sorts. Any thought of reclaiming it in the future was eliminated by the United States in 1846-7 by essentially imperialist expansion and yet another military defeat.

The truth of the matter is that the Texans fought for what they believed were their rights under law, including slavery, and what they felt was overly-dominant Mexican rule (which was anti-slavery). After a series of short, sharp defeats in 1835, the Mexicans returned with what they thought was overwhelming force and absconed a series of massacres (the Alamo, Goliad) before being caught with their pants down at San Jacinto. Maybe if Santa Ana and other Mexican generals, and their policymaking, hadn’t been so fucking retarded, they might have won out in the end. The Texan stand in the Alamo, to gain Travis a little glory, the government time to draft a constitution, and Houston the ability to gather an army, is one of the great struggles in Texan and American history.

— Alan

And the Indians were just one big old homogenous mob, right?

I’m sure Texas has been controlled by dozens of groups over the past thousand years. Which one of them gets the official McCullough seal of ownership? Spanish people, of course.

The Texans lived there at the time. That’s a pretty strong claim. Then they won in a war. Might doesn’t make right, but it makes truth. And the natural state of international relations is anarchy.

The sheer bizarreness of your demographics claim is so great I can only assume you are joking. Because Mexico had all those former Aztecs and Mayans, they deserved land that the tribe their second class citizens used to belong to never owned? Forgive me for the horrible sentence, but Jesus, that’s the most ridiculous thing ever.

The Alamo is celebrated because it was a heroic defense against huge odds. People like sacrifice and bravery.

See?

Guess I’ll be the first post an actual comment on the movie. I thought it was descent, say a B- grade. It felt too long, and could have been trimmed down some(the siege dragged on too long before the battle). Liked that they showed Houston beating Santa Ana afterwords

Shouldn’t you do that over in P&R, just for symmetry?

Yeah, and they recently lost Pixar, too. Disney is definitely hurting.

I say, what better time to release a movie about a Texan who stupidly got himself involved in a hopeless battle with no exit strategy?

Really? I would’ve thought it was the other way around. Just like how we freed the Iraqi’s from Saddam with our might making the war right. But no matter how strong the USA is, it hasn’t made any WMD’s appear out of thin air thereby proving Bush and his Administration’s claims true.

There’s no basement in the Alamo!

In the 300+ years of combined Spanish and Mexican governance they managed to settle the Texas frontier with only a few Presidio/Missions with perhaps 2 - 15k colonists. In less than 20 years of the empresario system Texas was definitively settled by well over 20-50k American and European colonists.

The Spanish attempts at colonization lacked in individual incentive and suffered from its catholic bureaucratic shortcomings. Although one might argue theirs was one of accommodation and synthesis with native peoples this was usually a reflection of its inability to extend its centralized power out of its ethnographic boundries (see the history of the Pueblo revolts).

Whatever the specifics of the political history, Texas was for all purposes founded at the time of Austin’s colony, and since the Anglo settlers had no intention of integrating into Spanish/Mexican religious or political culture, conflict and partition were inevitable.

Very true; missionaries were frequently the building blocks of any of the colonies throughout the combined Spanish/Mexican lands and they were extremely small; I doubt the largest numbered more than a few hundred combined missionaries, maybe a few soldiers, Indians of various types, and other settler-type inhabitants, even in the early 1800s. Mexico was partially wanting to make use of the land and make some money, and it practically invited Anglo colonists by the bushel. The extreme differences in culture, governmental rule, and race were to be huge points of conflict that probably could have been seen miles away.

Despite the tanking of the movie in general, most of the reviews from normal folks have been fairly decent. Not wholly great, but decent - decent enough I think to see in a theater.

— Alan

Best film featuring The Alamo ever.

THE STARS AT NIGHT
ARE BIG AND BRIGHT