June 25, 2009, - 4:10 pm

Johnny Depp: “I’m a Big Fan” and “Hope People Root For” Bank-Robbing, Cop-Killing Murderer

By Debbie Schlussel

When I was a kid, one of the best syndicated re-runs of “The Brady Bunch” was an episode entitled “Bobby’s Hero,” in which Bobby Brady idolizes Jesse James. Mr. Brady, disturbed that one of his sons would idolize a criminal and murderer, forces Bobby to learn about the real evil embodied by his romanticized hero from the old West. It finally hits home when Mike Brady introduces son Bobby to a man whose father was murdered in cold blood by his “idol.” (The full episode can be viewed in three parts here, here, and here–thanks to reader Yitzchak.)

If only we could go back 36 years and force actor Johnny Depp to have the fictional Mike Brady as his father. This is what I mean when I talk about the importance of good fathers in kids’ lives in America. Say what you want about “The Brady Bunch.” That was a TV father who did what many Americans don’t do for their kids today . . . including, apparently, Johnny Depp’s father.

Depp plays John Dillinger, the 1930s serial bank robber in “Public Enemies,” the movie which debuts in theaters, next Wednesday. It’s one of the big 4th of July holiday releases.

Sadly, Depp–who has a history of making anti-American statements–is just as clueless on the cold-blooded creep he plays. He’s now idolizing Dillinger in the same way little Bobby Brady idolized Jesse James. And, with it, he and his castmates play the same old left-wing class warfare politics, which somehow makes bank robbery “cool.”

Johnny Depp chuckles when he hears that his cast mates say he has a swagger similar to 1930s bank robber John Dillinger.
He thinks so, too.
“Oddly,” said the star of the legendary criminal, “I’m a big fan.”

Depp chatted about the folklore-like merits of Dillinger at the Los Angeles premiere of Public Enemies. . . .

“Especially in that era . . . everything was going against the common man. People like John Dillinger came back and were anti the establishment in their own special way,” Depp said. “I actually hope people root for him, too.

Sadly, co-star Christian Bale, who plays FBI Agent Melvin Purvis who went after Dillinger, drinks the pan-criminal Kool-Aid, too.

Bale said . . . moviegoers will naturally fall for the criminal’s charm.

“Especially because this is a gangster who really has the heart of the common man, too,” Bale said. “It’s like today, there’s a recession and like now, people back then felt there was this great sense of injustice and that these fat cats were just screwing them over. And Dillinger was somebody taking it back.

It’s like Dillinger was the right man at the right time and he seemed almost to have a cause. It’s a question whether that was really the case, but you can see how easily the people felt about that and gravitated toward that.”

9/11 Truther idiotette and co-star Marion Cotillard spouts the BS, too.

The cast also chatted about the Robin Hood-like quality that Depp brings to Dillinger.
He wasn’t really that bad,” cooed Oscar winner Marion Cotillard, who portrays Depp’s love interest in the film. “People will love this guy.


Here’s a reality check: John Dillinger was not a nice guy. He was a murderer. He killed a police officer, Patrick O’Malley. And he was a cop killer in more ways than one. When fellow degenerate friends of his sprung him from jail, a sheriff, Jess Sarber, was killed. And death and maiming, including of female bystanders, followed him everywhere he went.

This is America’s new folk hero? It reminds me of the sickening worship of Charles Manson that continues to simmer within America’s younger demographic.

When I first wrote about how I was looking forward to this movie, readers contacted me, hoping it wasn’t going to romanticize Dillinger, and it looks like their fears have been realized, based on what we’ve seen so far.
Reader Mark, who wrote:

Did you see the 1973 movie, “Dillinger“? I watched it on TV recently, twice. The first time, I was thinking that you don’t see movies like that too much any more, as it did not, over all, glorify the robbers and demonize the federal agents.

Did you ever happen to hear Woodie Guthrie’s “Pretty Boy Floyd“? I guess that presaged the coming of romanticizing evil.
Nowadays, everybody wants to be an outlaw.

Sadly, they do. Gangsta is in. Good is out.

Reader OldSchoolW warned:

Michael Mann’s films have never been known for their accuracy.

And if Dillinger is the hero these guys make him out to be, looks like this movie will be equally as inaccurate.

I’ll be seeing the movie, Monday, and posting my review at just after Midnight on Wednesday Morning. Stay tuned.

In the meantime, I repost the trailer here:

11 Responses

Now hang on there a sec … Jesse James? You can’t equate a man resisting the federal District of Columbia’s violent aggression against it’s own citizens to John Dillinger’s murderous and pointless spree killing. In fact, I would equate the Union’s pointless Civil War spree killing to Dillinger since it wasn’t for anything, like Dillinger, than Money.
The Black Flag in my handle is representative of Bill Quantrill. But rather than argue the War of Northern Aggression in this respected forum, I will quote H L Mencken’s note on the Gettysburg Address … since we’re all fond (these days) of supporting the basic human right to political self-determination …
(quote) The Gettysburg speech was at once the shortest and the most famous oration in American history…the highest emotion reduced to a few poetical phrases. Lincoln himself never even remotely approached it. It is genuinely stupendous. But let us not forget that it is poetry, not logic; beauty, not sense. Think of the argument in it. Put it into the cold words of everyday. The doctrine is simply this: that the Union soldiers who died at Gettysburg sacrificed their lives to the cause of self-determination ñ that government of the people, by the people, for the people, should not perish from the earth. It is difficult to imagine anything more untrue. The Union soldiers in the battle actually fought against self-determination; it was the Confederates who fought for the right of their people to govern themselves.

BlackFlagQ55 on June 25, 2009 at 5:21 pm

To contrast: Richard Widmark (one of my favorites) starred in a 1947 movie called “The Kiss of Death” in which he played a sicko criminal called Tommy. He became famous for his role and received much notoriety. In an interview, he stated how he detested that character, Tommy Udo, and consequently hated the movie so much that he never saw it.

Rick on June 25, 2009 at 5:33 pm

Evil should never be glamorized or celebrated. A good movie is one in which the villain always gets his just due. If we are going to begin looking at the bad guys in a positive light on the big screen, we’ve lost as a society.

NormanF on June 25, 2009 at 6:33 pm

I call these anti-values.
Hollyweird and the cesspools our urban areas have become have festered these for some time now.

SamAdams on June 25, 2009 at 7:15 pm

John Dillinger was a hardened career criminal. He did not care a whit for the poor or downtroden. Mr. Dillinger killed people, practically imprisoned the owners of the Little Bohemia Lodge, and did many other horrid things. He was quite adept at armed robbery, but since when was that a virtue? A compliment like that is only a step down from calling someone a competent rapist or murderer. If John Dillinger was a hero, so were Bonnie and Clyde and Al Capone.

Worry01 on June 25, 2009 at 10:39 pm

The gangster is almost always glorified in the movies.
I have never seen a Jesse James movie where Jesse isn’t shown to be a great guy.
Most lists of great movies have “The Godfather” as one of the greatest.
There is nothing to be admired about any mafia types. Sucking “protection” money from poor hardworking people. Murdering any one they want at will on the tiniest bit of suspicion they might be a snitch.
My grandfather was doused with lighter fluid and burned to death in his bed, probably as my great grand father was forced to watch.
There is nothing romantic about any of these animals. Death to them all.

smg45acp on June 26, 2009 at 8:45 am

You are aware that the Confederacy thought it was right to Black people like my great-grandfather?
I’m all for state rights, but let’s not pretend that the Confederacy was benevolent or innocent. Confederate soldiers were as bad Nazis in terms of defending an evil institution (e.g., slavery) instead of opposing it.
Sadly, this “defend the Confederacy’s evil no matter what” mindset is a precursor to the moral relativism we see in too many movies.

Fred2 on June 26, 2009 at 10:47 am

Great post.
Without fail, there is an outcry against gangsta rappers like 50 Cent getting movie roles. However, there is little condemnation of the “Godfather” making Italian gangsters sympathetic.
Shouldn’t “Godfather” and its various knockoffs get as much flack as gangsta rap?

Fred2 on June 26, 2009 at 10:51 am

Dear Fred2 – God Bless you, amigo. I want you to think on your comments in the coming days as the federal military District of Columbia acts in the coming days of Cap and Trade, Global Warming legislation, folding knife legislation, enforced Census for Communist front organizations, enforced mandatory federal registration and payment into Nationalized Healthcare whether you want it or not, the further nationalization of key private sector infrastructure business and Lord knows how many more items of federalization I can list. Seriously, I want you to think long and hard about what you’ve posted.
Because surely you can recognize that exactly what drove the South to the ultimate dire redress is taking form in front of you, again. So what will your answer be, then? Meek bowing to a tyrant regime from a district separate from the fifty states? Or, redress?
There are no clean hands in war. There are no clean hands in politics. There is nowhere to stand where all is righteousness. The crimes of the federal district actually do fill volumes, but are rarely mentioned in government schools or state media. Our gracious host, Ms. Schlussel … her people, her race has so much to answer for that your statements painting the Confederacy as Nazis can equally be applied to her people, but you don’t dare. I support the Israelite people 100% and will do so with my life if need be, but that doesn’t absolve deeds of the past, does it? Shall we discuss the clean hands of slavers on the African continent who waxed fat from selling their own to Dutch and English slavers? No … we can’t do that. That’s unacceptable.
The real story of Jesse james is quite a bit different than the acceptable, media driven picture of him. Just as the real story of Bill Quantrill is different or Nathan Bedford Forrest. NBF – self educated millionaire. Such brilliant audacity as a cavalry leader than his tactics are still taught in military war colleges. Founded the Klan to keep the Union honest in his patch of the South then walked away from it and disowned it when it’s members turned on the Negro instead of hewing to the original mission. During the war, freed his slaves and they willingly volunteered to fight alongside him and did so valiantly. Not to further enslave their own, but to repel an invading ravaging criminal army from the District. How is it that an uneducated freed slave gets it and quite well educated modern commenters do not?
Jesse James was no hero, but he damn sure was going to make the Union pay dearly for what they’d done to his property and family. As I hope, any Real Man would do.
And you, sir, almost surely will get a chance to make that choice under the Obama Administration. Can you step up when it happens?

BlackFlagQ55 on June 26, 2009 at 11:25 am

If you want to see an outstanding film that shows mobsters as the loser punks they really are, I suggest you get the DVD (or wait for Turner Classic Movies to show)
William A. Wellman’s “The Public Enemy” (1931), starring James Cagney.
Wellman too was disgusted with the glorification of the mob in film, so he made this to show them as they really are.
Great shocker ending!

mplumb on June 26, 2009 at 2:23 pm

It is interesting to see the lives and actions of people who are notorious, but it is quite another thing to sympathize with them. There were people who thought John Wilkes Booth, Charles Guiteau, Leon Czolgosz, and Lee Harvey Oswald were heroes, but they were not. These were marginal and psychotic men who tried to make up for their own limited accomplishments by snuffing out those who had done or achieved more than they could ever hope for in their lives. John Wilkes Booth was probably the most capable of the lost, but his hatred of the Union and love of slavery poisoned his mind to anything other than the destruction of President Lincoln. His insanity was quite clear in that he peformed his dirty deed after there was essentially no more Confederacy to defend. Generals Robert E. Lee and Joseph E. Johnston considered Booth’s act of assasination to be abhorrent. Even many people who loathed Lincoln in the South realized that what John Wilkes Booth had done was more out of personal pique, rather than concern for the former Confederacy, and damned him for making their future even bleaker. The other assasins do not even rise to the level of Booth, but were practially freaks rather than men. Conspiracy theorists should always consider the possibility that it just takes a lucky jerk to kill someone important sometimes.

Worry01 on June 26, 2009 at 11:47 pm

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