Michael Moore urges Malibu, Democrats to get ‘new blood’

Controversial documentary filmmaker Michael Moore made an appearance at Diesel, A Bookstore in Malibu Tuesday evening. Arnold G. York / TMT

The controversial documentary filmmaker makes an appearance at Malibu’s bookstore.

By Vicki Godal/Special to The Malibu Times

Diesel, A Bookstore was packed Tuesday night when Michael Moore, the controversial and provocative documentarian of movies like “Fahrenheit 9/11” and “Bowling for Columbine” as well as the author of several books including “Stupid White Men,” arrived in Malibu for a rare public appearance.

Moore, who was in town to promote his newest book, “Will They Ever Trust Us Again,” began his lecture with the lack of Democratic leadership in Malibu and in California as a whole. The crowd that filled the bookstore was a cross-cultural mix of Malibu. One young student in front of the crowd surrounding Moore wore a T-Shirt that read, “Bash Bush,” which seemed to be the general mood of the gathering. However, Moore refused to go down the road of Bush bashing, instead urging, in fact, castigating, them to better prepare for next time.

“Why is it that the Democratic Party in this state is so pathetic? It’s such a blue state, bluer than blue and you’ve got a Republican governor and you just got through having a Republican mayor in this town,” Moore said. “What is going on here is a complete lack of leadership…and it’s time to throw out the old hacks of the Democratic party and get some new blood in there…That’s where it’s gotta start.”

Moore, whose “Fahrenheit 9/11” is the highest-grossing feature-length documentary ever made with $250 million in ticket sales worldwide, pointed out a totally unanticipated phenomena that occurred as a result of the film.

“One of the biggest things I would hear when people came out of “Fahrenheit 9/11″ back when it opened were remarks about people not remembering seeing things in the news. Like, ‘I never saw that egg hitting Bush’s limousine during the inaugural procession, did you see that on the news?’ The film outed the mainstream media for not doing their job,” Moore said. “I think it’s absolutely disgusting that people have to rely on a guy in a baseball cap without a high school education to tell you these things. Something is wrong with this picture. You should not have to pay $9 at a movie theatre to see what you should be able to see for free on NBC and ABC evening news every single night.” Taking a post election breather after touring 63 cities in the swing states during the last month of the presidential campaign, Moore is now preparing for an Oscar campaign that he hopes will earn his documentary a best picture nomination. With four more years of Bush, Moore also plans to make a “Fahrenheit 9/11” sequel before the next election.

Moore said that he’s worked since his film “Roger and Me” to try to create movies that people want to go see on a Friday night as opposed to the typical documentary.

“Too many documentaries aren’t that and I wish they were. If you just want to make a political point, you can just run for office. If you want to give a sermon, you can be a preacher. I’ve chosen to be a filmmaker. So what that means is that first, honor the art of cinema before the politics,” Moore said. “The art comes before the politics. If you put the politics first, the art suffers and then they turn it off or they get nothing out of it as they sit there bored to death in the movie theatre.”

In January, Moore begins work on a new documentary about U.S. healthcare and pharmaceuticals, tentatively titled “Sicko.”

Michael Moore has won an Oscar for “Bowling for Columbine,” an Emmy for “TV Nation,” the Palme d’Or at Cannes and the British Book of the Year 2003 award for “Stupid White Men.” He lives with his wife in northern Michigan.