Stephen Spielberg is unquestionably one of the most important cultural figures in post-World War 20th century American history. He has been an Orpheus or poetic shepherd of generations of Americans who grew up in the 80s and 90s and has radically altered our perception of the world and ourselves.
I want to first point out that Stephen Spielberg is not a great director or artist in the same way that Shakespeare or even Francis Ford Coppola is a great artist. Spielberg never has and never could make a movie like Lawrence of Arabia. Nonetheless, Spielberg is a very good director and a genius in his own right who is very talented. Secondly, there are some morally redeeming qualities to his movies. He is critical of certain aspects of Zionism in Munich, for example, and in many ways Saving Private Ryan is a tribute to the Catholics and Protestants who fought against Germany in World War II—we all remember the scene at the beginning of the movie in which the priest is hearing the confessions of the dying GIs on the beaches of Normandy. Nonetheless, Spielberg’s movies are not only weird, but contain some very disturbing tropes and themes.
The first of these themes is breaking children away from their parents and often transferring their loyalty to another adult or even supernatural (or extraterrestrial entity).
Let’s look at the plot of The Goonies. The movie, although fun and hilarious, has a group of extremely foul mouthed boys who go in search of a pirate named “One-Eyed Willy”, a clear vulgar reference to the male reproductive organ. What’s more, as Jay Dyer has pointed out, there are other subtle phallic references in the movie. There is also a scene in which a young boy kisses a much older teenage girl in queer soft pedophilia.
This exposure of children to sexuality or at least the idea of transferring a child’s devotion from the parents to another being is present throughout Spielberg’s films. In ET, it is, of course, an alien who secretly befriends a young boy, introducing him to a risqué scene in a John Wayne movie that inspires the boy passionately to kiss a girl—clearly a hint of what Spielberg and all movie directors are doing in educating and molding their audience. What’s more, we see this unveiling of what TV and movies do in Poltegeist in which the young very blonde girl is awake a night watching TV while her parents are asleep when a hand comes out of the TV to touch her.The message here is clearly that while our parents were sleeping Stephen Spielberg has gotten us.
This motif of children going out among strangers to be educated and traumatized is also present in Jurassic Park. The boy and the girl in the movie spend the night in the arms of a stranger, Dr. Grant in a tree–it must be added that the young girl has a crush on Dr. Grant, and the boy also develops an attachment to Dr. Grant.
BFG also has a goofy looking giant who, once again, befriends a child. In Band of Brothers the viewer is ambushed by an unexpected sex scene of a young (once again) very blonde woman fornicating with an American serviceman.
Saving Private Ryan and Band of Brothers have largely shaped the vision of the European theatre for most Americans of my generation. However, in Band of Brothers there is a revenge scene, not included in Stephen Ambrose’s book, at the end in which a Nazi is killed, sending the clear message that even though the war is over, the Germans will continually have to suffer for it—Art Spiegelman in Maus does the same thing by having a cell of his graphic novel in which the Germans depicted as cats are morning the destruction of their country and one of the Jewish mice insinuates that they deserve to suffer a little bit too.
Indiana Jones beats and brutally kills Germans—the most famous being the big German who is chopped up with an airplane propeller in Raiders of the Lost Ark. These scenes reflect not only Spielberg’s revenge fantasies against Germans (who may or not have been Nazis) but also Spielberg’s own revenge fantasizes against the Chrsitian Americans who bullied him for being Jewish–he comments on this bullying in recent interviews. What is further disturbing if we follow Spielberg’s logic is that he is trying to get young Christian Americans to interiorize this hatred of masculine and aggressive European males or even to hate their own ethnic and religious identity. Incidentally, Sloth, a large retarded man with tuffs of blonde hair is welcomed into Chunk’s Jewish family in The Goonies.
Finally, Spielberg, while not as clearly an occultist as George Lucas, nonetheless seems to want radically to tweak the Christian beliefs of his audience. ET appears as a Christ figure with a glowing chest is a teacher and special friend to the young boy and girl in the movie. ET’s famous movie poster clearly is meant to replace God creating Adam. In Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, the chalice of Christ is merely a magical charmed object to be fought over—thus the belief in the Real Presence is overshadowed by a vague paganism—Henry Jones also cryptically tells Indy that he found “illumination” at the end of the film. In Poltergeist, the Jewish medium tells the Christians not to place their trust in their faith. Even movies like Jaws reinforce the idea that humans are weak fallible creatures who are pray to the natural and supernatural forces of the universe. Like much of the 80s horror genre, Spielberg’s movies are meant to shed the comfort and safety of children, to make them not to trust their parents or their faith and to let them know that they are very vulnerable to manipulation and attack form diabolic forces—wielded by Spielberg himself.
It seems to be the main messages that Stephen Spielberg wants to get across are as follows:
- Germans and Arabs are really bad people and should be killed.
- America is a fundamentally multicultural and multi-religious country whose job is to kill any ethnocentric European country.
- The world is full of terrifying forces that our Christian parents cannot protect us from.
- The real gods are ETs from another planet who want to be our friends and radically alter our understanding of the universe and religion.
- It is really important for children to know about and even experience sex.
- Kids just need to get away from their parents sometimes and hangout with adult strangers.
- The world is full of magical and charmed objects that can be used by humans to gain power or provide some sort of mystical experience.
- Jewish people are just as American as everyone else and are really funny and clever and are here to help us shed our racism, religious prejudice, and sexual mores.
My goal here has not been to destroy the childhood memories of others. I am a child of the 80s and would still rock out to Van Halen if they weren’t Satanic perverts (another story for another time) and play endless hours of NES if it would not come at the price of my immortal soul. My goal has been to unveil the evil that clearly is present in Spielberg’s movies.
In light of the increasing revelations that Pizzagate is just the tip of the iceberg of a large scale trafficking of children, the fixation in Spielberg’s movies on child sexuality is disturbing—whether or not Spielberg himself is guilty of any sort of sexual abuse. Furthermore, the prevalence of occultism could be shrugged off simply as the influence of George Lucas or Spielberg’s own dabbling in Jungianism and not a revelation that Spielberg himself is practicing Kabbalist or something—but it is present in his movies. Finally, Spielberg does not have to be happy about what individual Germans did to his people in the 1930s and 40s or happy about the how the Jews were on the losing end of a religious and ethnic war for much of the past 2000 years of Western Civilization. However, it is important to remember that a movie is never just a movie, and it is precisely because Spielberg’s movies are so alluring that they are so dangerous.