I'll admit it can take just one film to usually convince me to come to a film festival. In the case of this year's Berlinale, it was Jafar Panahi's Taxi. I knew I wanted to sit in that bursting at the seams press screening, first thing in the morning, to watch it. And, as is usually the case with my cinematic instinct, I was right.
In the absence of a common narrative shared by the U.S. and China, the two nations are likely to drift more rapidly apart. The relationship needs a new strategic concept for the future that is capable of sufficiently embracing both American and Chinese realities, as well as areas of potential common endeavor for the future, and to do so in language which is comprehensible and meaningful in both capitals. Trust builds on itself just as distrust builds on itself as well, compounding into deep enmity over time.
There has been a lot of controversy about the movie and its content, not to mention anti-Arab and anti-Muslim sentiments by thoughtless leftists and conservatives. The main issue is that we not make this about one particular party line, because in doing so, it distracts us from what is hiding in plain sight: America's love of war.