Thu. Feb 20th, 2020

The culture in the land of Trump and the alligators



There is a scene in I will go by Martin Scorsese in which Jimmy Hoffa (Al Pacino) and Frank Sheeran (Robert De Niro) meet with Hoffa union leader and rival Tony Provenzano (Stephen Graham). Provenzano is late, a thing that Hoffa can not stand, and then enters the room, lined in the pastel colors of Miami art nouveau, dressed in white shorts, also white moccasins and an unbuttoned printed shirt. Accessories: a cigar and sunglasses.


Since the dispute between Al Gore and Bush Jr. in the 2000 elections, the state has been easy prey for comedians






– So you dress for a meeting? – Hoffa incredpa.


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– So you dress in Florida? With a suit? –Provenzano responds, causing the viewer to go back and release a “wooow”, because the viewer has seen many Scorsese movies and knows exactly what happens to those who are ready to go.


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Before pouncing on him to beat him, Pacino makes one thing clear: yes, he puts on a gray suit with a tie and tie for a meeting, in Florida and in Timbuktu.


Beyond the Art Basel media, some artists try to capture the chiaroscuros of the place

It’s funny to hear Pacino say that because everyone remembers the actor with an outfit equal to or more extravagant than Provenzano’s in another film that distills essence of Florida, The price of power . Tony Montana with a bloody Hawaiian shirt, Tony Montana in a white suit and a maroon shirt with fewer buttons even than Provenzano’s. A combination of men’s tailoring that preceded the Miami uniform in the eighties in a decade, the loose suit with rolled up sleeves worn with a shirt underneath worn by Don Johnson in Corruption in Miami .






Only ‘Moonlight’, Oscar-winning movie in 2017, escapes the usual clichés

Think what Hoffa thinks, here the one who is right is Provenzano. You don’t go with a gray suit and tie for Florida.


The call sunshine estate He has been occupying broadband for a few years. No one was surprised when last October Donald Trump announced that he was no longer an official resident of New York. Although he was born in Queens and built his empire of gold leaf in Manhattan, the president has gone to register in Florida, where the famous Mar-a-Lago is, a mansion of 126 rooms (or 118 according to where it is consulted; normal, to from ninety one is discounted). Trump bought it in 1985 and later transformed it into a private club. That is, when he retires there, which he does very often (he has spent more than a hundred days since he was president, compared to the twenty he has spent the night in the Trump tower in Manhattan), he is not in a private winter retreat Like those who have had other presidents also in Florida – Richard Nixon in Key Biscayne, Harry Truman in Key West, John Kennedy in Palm Beach – but staying in a kind of luxury hotel, sharing the pool and spa with anyone that can afford the $ 70,000 tuition and $ 4,000 annual fee paid by members. Mar-a-Lago is more than the site of his recreation, it is, as he told Francesc Peirón in The vanguard Laurence Leamer, the author of the book Mar-a-lago, inside the gates of power at Donald Trump’s presidential palace , “The place where he learned everything.” There he faced the Palm Beach aristocracy based on dollars and perfected that of being both an extreme elite and the greatest anti-system.






Trump, who also held in Florida the rally in which he announced that he would be re-elected, has become a resident for tax purposes. Inheritance is not assessed there, so that your five children would save giving the state 16 percent of their fortune when they die. But still there is something narratively appropriate in this movement, because Trump thus becomes the über-man of Florida, the definitive Florida Man. That meme, the Florida Man, became popular as of 2013, when the Twitter account @_FloridaMan emerged, dedicated to posting news starring guys from that state run over by their dog for stepping on the accelerator, or arrested for giving beer to a crocodile , or for supplanting the identity of a policeman to have discounts at McDonald’s. According to a newspaper investigation Miami Herald It is not that weirder things happen there than in, say, Ohio, but there are more lax laws that allow journalists to obtain information from the police that are protected elsewhere. Whatever .


Movies and TV series do not resist reproducing all the topics and jokes about Florida

The truth is that, especially since the dispute between Al Gore and George Bush, Jr. was settled in Florida in 2000. because of some butterfly ballots – the teleserie Recount HBO took that to fiction eight years later – the state became an easy prey for American comedians, who have made it their running gag , in his most reliable continuous joke. Comedian John Mulaney explained in the Seth Meyers show why comedians so much: “You would never ride Florida on purpose. You would never organize a dinner and say: we are going to invite a lot of older Jews, a few gays cool from South Beach, a group of conservative Cubans, an opossum, an alligator, twelve serial killers and the richest people in the world trying not to pay taxes. And at the end of the dinner everyone decides who is president. ”





Meyers himself made a segment last October in which he tried to resist the siren songs of the joke about Florida. “I will not do it, they are too easy,” he repeated, but in the end he gave up
to the evidence and ended up answering the headline “a man from Florida was arrested yesterday for dancing naked in a McDonald’s”: “Great, now I have to find someone to cover his shift, said the manager.”

It is likely that state residents are starting to get tired of a stereotype spread by people with expensive college degrees living in New York and Los Angeles. As the journalist of The Tampa Bay Times Craig Pittman, “tragedy wears the mask of comedy. It is not that you are reading the part of the police, you are seeing the result of a state that is number 49 in mental health spending. ” 49 of 50. Pittman is the author of the book Oh! Florida , which bears the subtitle: How the rarest state in America influences the rest of the country .

The recent series Become God in Florida , which Movistar + has just issued, does not dodge almost any of those clichés. The protagonist’s husband – a Kirsten Dunst who was nominated for the Golden Globes for her role as a water park employee who ends up making millions with a pyramid scam – dies in the first chapter swallowed by an alligator in a swamp and she ends up hunting to the animal and tearing off the skin. At the center of the action is FAM, a fraudulent company that has sect elements, the economic and social inequalities of the state are perceived
and everything is bathed by a radiant sun and a layer of moisture that is perceived even in the fried hair of the actors.





Although it has much less dramatic (and traumatic) load, the series, which Yorgos Lanthimos was going to direct at the beginning – archiving in “frustrated television projects for which we will always sigh” – plays with contrasts similar to those of the film The Florida Project (2017). Yes To become..
. begins in a park of pools and slides, Sean Baker’s film takes place in the miserable motels that are located on the periphery of what is sold as “the happiest place in the world,” Disney World. These establishments, where families who have been expelled from the real estate market are staying for seasons, have names dotted with Disney magic: Magic Castle, Futureland. In Magic Castle, precisely, live Halley, a single mother, dancer and intermittent waitress, and her six-year-old daughter. The film, which deflated upon arrival at the Oscars, received the mandatory comparisons with the film that did take it – the Oscar – the previous year, and also contains scenes of child poverty in sunny Florida, Moonlight . Local critics highlighted the Barry Jenkins movie that was the first time they saw that Miami in the cinema, a very different one from the miniseries Versace , for example. The characters, many of them black Cubans, move through the dilapidated residential complexes of Liberty City (the neighborhood in which Jenkins grew up) and the Virginia Key beach, predominantly African-American.





Some artists are beginning to capture similar scenarios in their work, and many of them have been finalists in the last six years to the Florida Prize that delivers the Museum of Contemporary Art in Orlando, which exhibits every year to ten creators of the area. For example, the landscapes and interiors of Amer Kobaslija, born in Bosnia and resident in Orlando, which shows in his canvases how the citizens of his state of adoption (arrived with his family as a refugee after the Balkan War) domesticate nature and They put her to work. The gigantic trees are used to wind dozens of plastic floats in them. More bleak are the photos of photojournalist Lola Gomez, who portrays the ravages of hurricanes and the opioid crisis in Florida. Despite the efforts of these artists to reflect their land with all their



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