1. Arts and Entertainment

United 93: The Real Web Story

I’m continuing the kick on United 93 because as both art and historical record, it’s unrivaled. I tried describing it to my parents, who plan on seeing it, and the best I could come up with is that it entirely fulfills its potential. It is everything that movie should be. Now, I can understand why many wouldn’t want to see it, but for those considering it, it’s a must – especially on the big screen.

Meanwhile, I spent a fair amount of time on the movie’s site. There are two things Universal Pictures does especially well with the site: community and philanthropy. To tackle the latter first, the film homepage prominently links to the Flight 93 Memorial Fund, encouraging donations. Nice touch – and it takes away the feeling that this could be sensationalist (in terms of perception; the movie itself does an even better job at allaying this).

More importantly, there’s community. The film’s message board had over 11,000 posts as of late Sunday night, divided into three categories: The Movie, Tributes, and alternative Theories. Almost all posts were in the first and last categories. There were 1,942 registered users. The best part: the boards are uncensored. The newest registrant registered under the handle "I Hate Gay People," and many of the posts are flat out offensive for all sorts of reasons. However, the boards also allow some who saw the movie to voice their heartfelt reactions, and it can be cathartic, especially for such an emotional subject.

Perhaps there’s another conspiracy theory worth investigating though. Atop the board is this message:

We apologize for the removal of the message boards – due to technical difficulties all previous threads have been inadvertantly deleted. We invite you to renew your dialog and discuss your thoughts on the film.

Did the message board crash, or were the posts shot down?

Can’t wait to see the movie version of that one.

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