Hollywood isn't known as a place for a 'conservative' frame of mind. I think Sean Penn reminded us of that quite nicely during his Oscar acceptance speech when he endearingly referred to the crowd of tinsel-town elite as "You Commie Homo-Loving Sons of Guns". But that doesn't mean our Red-state friends don't like to go to the movies just as much as their liberal brethren -- so what's a Conservative to do? Well, the National Review has come to the rescue and compiled a list of The Best Conservative Movies. And how does a movie arrive on such a list? According to NR, "Conservatives enjoy these films because they are great movies that offer compelling messages about freedom, families, patriotism, traditions, and more" -- because I guess it is impossible for someone with Liberal political views to care about those things. So even though the political leanings of the cast and crew reportedly did not come into play for the list, I'm not sure I believe the addition of David Mamet's The Edge wasn't inspired (if only a little) by the filmmakers political 180 earlier this year.

Now for the list itself, well, there are the obvious choices like Red Dawn, 300 and The Dark Knight that are praised for their themes featuring individuals fighting against a terrorist, invading hoards, and a chorus of naysayers (sound familiar?). But the rest of the list isn't so obvious, and there are some weird selections in the bunch. Juno was noted for being pro-life (but punished for its heroines "unrealistic level of self-confidence"), Brazil for its tale of bureaucracy run amok, Groundhog Day for promoting small town values, and The Incredibles was even noted for bringing a little Ayn Rand back to the kiddie set. Personal politics aside, I have to wonder just what, exactly, some of these people were on when they included Ghostbusters on the list (I know, I know, an EPA guy is a bad guy, but c'mon, leave Dr. Venkman out of this).

After reading NR's list, I'm still not convinced these films resonate more with someone who has a certain set of values and beliefs. Were audiences really thinking about G.W. Bush and Dick Cheney when King Leonidas and Bruce Wayne were saving the day? Probably not. Maybe there really are no such things as conservative movies, or liberal movies for that matter. Maybe there are just movies, good and bad, and it's the audience that brings our politics to the table. What do you think....