In 2018, Steve Carell (The Office) starred in a movie called “Welcome to Marwen.” It looked quirky and I like to think that I like quirky so I thought I’d watch it. But it wasn’t a must see rather a “eh, maybe I’ll watch that sometime.” The time came when it came to me via tv and there was absolutely nothing on. It turns out, the movie is way past quirky. In fact, it waves at quirky as it heads into surreal. The thing that takes it up a notch is it is, in fact, based on a true story. A story that may make you watch the movie with squinted eyes and the question “is this for real” playing in a loop in your mind. At least, that’s how I watched it. Part of it is not real, not real at all. Part of it is a lesson on being deceived.
The movie is based on Mark Hogancamp who has created an art form of photography using army men (yes, toy army men) as models. He has created a whole weird world with the army men. Including a famous photograph that has gone viral. I have seen it depicting the horror of war and promoting patriotism and supporting veterans. The trouble is the models are not people. They are toy army men.
Here’s the lesson of this little story. Be careful out there. While you’re scrolling, clicking on links, reading headlines you are going to come across some things that are blatantly not true. Some things are designed to manipulate your emotions and trigger certain responses. We have to learn to be truth savvy. Do a little digging. Don’t trust everything you see. The term “fake news” is getting thrown around quite a bit but it’s more than that. It’s also “fake facts” and “fake history” that we need to watch out for. Snake oil salesmen are still in business folks.