This is concerning Michael Moore Jr's. letter to the editor and his comments about a recent performance of Keaton's silent film, The General (1926), which was delivered with panache by the ArMack Orchestra (Mailbox, Nov. 16).
First, hat tip to all parties involved in mounting a performance of this great classic film. As one who has compiled many silent film scores and taken part in live performances here and elsewhere, I appreciate the hard work and dedication it takes to bring these performances to fruition. Now, what Mr. Moore needs is a better understanding of what this film is about.
The film is not, as Moore suggests, a hurrah for the Confederacy. It is instead, a parody of an episode taken from a page of Civil War history that's more concerned about telling a love story; throw in a spectacular train collision and you have a film classic worthy of performing without cautionary notes. The Civil War happened and the abolitionists won. Should we try to blot out all memories of these facts to suit a few who can't appreciate that it resulted in the Emancipation Proclamation?
Franklin Stover, Eureka