The controversy surrounding the film, recently added to the Netflix catalogue, and the pandemic, have meant far more viewers than the most optimistic estimates predicted
The controversy and the pandemic have meant that film The Wasp Network, recently added to the Netflix catalogue, continues to be seen by far more viewers than the most optimistic estimates had predicted.
This has occurred despite the fact that some involved in the film’s story have vowed to ignore it and continue to call for a boycott, while seeking legal redress “for damages.”
But they expose themselves and, in the solitude of their homes, watch the movie on Netflix, eager to know how they appear in the film. Then they explode, their anger providing clear evidence of a broken pact among criminals, as is the case with Ramón Saúl Sánchez, an old sidekick of the terrorist Posada Carriles and counter-revolutionary linked to the first groups determined to return Cuba to its pre-1959 conditions.
Sanchez is offended, because the film “is more a political project than a cinematic story,” a statement that invites one to imagine a science fiction plot, with the French director Olivier Assayas, the producers from different countries, technicians, actors, and Netflix itself, involved in an international conspiracy interested in advocating Cuba’s right to defend itself against terrorists in Florida, nurtured and protected by the United States government.
What really bothers the Omega-7 terrorist group’s explosives expert is that the film presents him as one of the many who have made counterrevolution a lucrative business, and it is true that more than a few of his type are trying to shake off the image of “patriot” swimming in dirty money, that does not dignify the cause.
Hence, Sanchez, also a member of the Alpha 66 group (with a bloody record of violence against the Cuban people) is indignant about the uncomfortable position in which the film places him and claims, with an air of offense, that a good amount of money came out of his pockets to unite Cuban families. A statement he attempted to substantiate with an example of his generosity, saying, “Once, I even had to pay an $800 bill for calls to Cuba,” according to Internet posts.
Quite a reminder of the “who’s who” adventure to be found on social media, sampling reactions to The Wasp Network. This is how Carlos Alberto Montaner, an old terrorist and CIA agent (with a documented record) became a “political analyst” while remaining a violent counter-revolutionary.
He was someone else who, “without really wanting to,” watched The Wasp Network, because – in keeping with the ideals of an intellectual who questions everything – he could not believe the argument that the film “was pure propaganda paid for by Havana.” In other words, supposedly devoid of prejudice and ideological positions, the analyst saw the film, later considering this a mistake, since, in effect, “It is propaganda paid for by Havana,” a risky slander – he should know better – since he too could be sued by the film’s producers and, on this occasion, not without good reason.
Once again, cinema and art, in their historical implications, are eclipsed by extreme positions that prefer bonfires to analysis. Hatred, cursing, contempt, empty arguments, savage attacks, crude propaganda launched against those who simply give a frank opinion, as Spanish Vice-President Pablo Iglesias learned. After writing, “Saw it. Heroes. Great movie,” with total frankness, he faced the never absent, furious paid response, waving torches, out to set social media on fire.