On this week’s Movies vs. Capitalism, hosts Rivka Rivera and Frank Cappelllo are joined by Lever reporter Matthew Cunningham-Cook for an educational (and terrifying) conversation about Stanley Kubrick’s satirical masterpiece Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb.

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A rough transcript of the episode is available here.

Over the last year, tensions between the United States and Russia have risen to Cold War-era levels as the U.S. continues its proxy war with the world power over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. While the Red Scare may be over, the U.S. has entered a new era of nuclear brinkmanship.

Within this context, the MVC team unpacks the historical parallels between Dr. Strangelove and what actually transpired during the Cold War. Matthew explains how one of the film’s main characters, Brigadier General Jack D. Ripper, was loosely based on eccentric anti-communist Air Force General Curtis LeMay.The team also explores the influence of the right-wing anti-communist John Birch Society on 1950s American politics, and the origins of the nefarious Operation Paperclip, in which the U.S. intelligence community recruited former Nazi military officials and scientists to help defeat the Soviet Union.

For next week’s movie, MVC will be watching Paul Verhoeven’s Robocop.

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