Ayn Rand Redux: Atlas Shrugged Part 2 Set To Fizzle This Fall

The second installment of the threatened cinematic trilogy of Ayn Rand’s insipid novel Atlas Shrugged is set for release in October of this year, a month before the presidential election. The release date was deliberately chosen by the producers for its political significance despite the fact that they haven’t even begun production.

John Aglialoro and Harmon Kaslow, reprising their roles as producers, claim that part two is fully funded. And why shouldn’t it be? Part one, which ran for all of five weeks last year, was universally panned by critics and theater-goers, and earned back only one-fifth of what it cost to produce and distribute. This dismal performance was achieved despite a massive effort on the part of right-wing media and Tea Party activists to prop up the film.

Everyone from Andrew Breitbart, to the Koch brothers, and John Boehner, and, of course, Fox News, joined the hype campaign with the vain hope of turning this turkey into a hit. The day care kiddies at Fox & Friends spun the story so hard they must have gotten nauseous the next day when the producers contradicted their phony hoopla and publicly admitted that they had a bomb on their hands.

The hype has apparently already begun with an article by Paul Bond in the Hollywood Reporter that inexplicably describes Atlas Shrugged part one as having “earned a respectable $5,640 per theater.” Respectable to whom? That is an even lower take than the unmitigated theatrical disaster of Sarah Palin’s Undefeated, which pulled in only $6,500 per screen before shuffling off to an early video demise. By contrast, Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth did $70,000 per screen; Michael Moore’s Capitalism: A Love Story did $58,000 per screen; Banksy’s Exit Through The Gift Shop did $21,000 per screen.

Adding to the irony is the fact that under Rand’s philosophy this film project should be abandoned. The obedience to free market principles demands that failures such as this be relegated to history’s garbage heap. But conservatives always exempt themselves from the rules they apply to everyone else. So the [dog and pony] show must go on. Here’s a peek at the promotional trailer just released that features absolutely nothing from the actual film:

Wow. Compelling stuff. The promo begins with Glenn Beck and features snippets from six people who don’t do much more than mention Rand’s name. Five of the six are Fox News personalities (how did Phil Donahue get mixed up in this?). Who do you suppose this film is being targeted at? The rest of the promo shows a clip of Rand that conveniently leaves out her notoriously anti-American, atheistic views. Perhaps this would have made a better promo:


4 thoughts on “Ayn Rand Redux: Atlas Shrugged Part 2 Set To Fizzle This Fall

  1. That just friggin’ kills me. There is no actual incentive to make this film, it won’t make money, and it will be terrible in terms of overall quality, yet the Randroids still crank it out, failing to pay attention to their own “philosophy” of market fundamentalism. So pathetic that it’s hilarious.

  2. Ein Rand sounds a lot like ein Nazi.

  3. I read Atlas Shrugged as a part of a college report in government. This was ten years ago, mind you. Anyway, my initial assumptions were that is was a masterful work. I drew plenty of comparisons between some of the characters there and the GOP. The GOP love to disguise there manipulations as charity and love. They use guilt and religious incantations with brutal precision.

    I drew upon Rand’s notion of human selfishness as a means of describing how humans love and sacrifice for one another.
    A naive example would be Martin Luther King selfishly wanted a
    more egalitarian society. He selfishly wanted for others to live happily.

    The complexity of human desires and emotions such as compunction cannot be so simply defined. I see that now. There is much more to it.

    Looking back on it now and with help from your site Mark, I realize much of the characters in Rand’s book were cold and loveless. They were shallow beings struggling to hold back their misanthropic contempt. All that existed was the individual ego, selfishness of the highest order, and an overwhelming urge to win no matter the cost. It was a book by a sociopath for sociopaths.

  4. What critics fail to mention is that this film (and the novel) presents the strongest indictment against crony-capitalism of any film. Even liberals (who are pretty dumb) understand the harm crony-capitalism does to this country. The essence of Rand’s philosophy is that individual rights – everyone’s, not any chosen few – are more important than any social program that some charlatan will try to sell you. Without freedom of choice and respect for the individual rights of others, everything is lost.

    Mark’s article is nothing but cheap entertainment for the mindless.

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