Over the last few weeks, I have watched White House chief strategist Steve Bannon’s grim oeuvre of nine documentaries. I hesitate to call them films since in their visual style they would more accurately be classified as extended political commercials, some running to nearly two deadly hours. That these affairs are better viewed as advertisements is confirmed by the name of the production company: Citizens United.
Across this deranged corpus the intent of Bannon’s musical choices remains unchanged: frighten and dismay. Thus we hear ominous, creeping strings above ponderous, portentous bass notes when Bannon’s latest prophet, Duck Commander Phil Robertson (The Torchbearer, 2016) appears resplendent in full biblical beard and priestly camo-headband, journeying across the globe to reveal God’s truths from his own Louisiana swamp to the Acropolis and Auschwitz.
-- David Yearsley