Gonna Fly Now

Chris Farmer RSS / 21.10.2008. u 21:27

The year was 1976.

A disenchanted American nation was ready to vote in a Georgia peanut farmer as president, to put away the hallucinogenics which blurred out most of the late 60s and early 70s, to put away their anti-Vietnam War banners, and start over again. The morale of US of A was lagging by defeat in Asia, humiliation in the White House, and the beginnings of recession and the Energy Crisis.

Enter the Italian Stallion: Rocky Balboa

Rocky, the film of the year, was the story of loser made good. Many people called it the embodiment of the American Dream. How a down and out Philadelphia boxer moves up the ranks to challenge and defeat the heavyweight champion of the world is the kind of rags to riches story which is called "inspirational" and "quintessentially American."

Enter Toma Nikolic.

For his new radical party off-shoot, the Serb Progressive Party (SNS), Toma pulled out all the stops to do his first major rally in Belgrade. And as he walked into the hall, the music started to play. It was music that every middle aged American in Serbia (me, James Lyon, and a couple of embassy guys) immediately felt reverberating in the Great American Nostalgia. The music was at the top of the charts in US music in 1976 through 1977 and is still played whenever Great Feeling needs to be stirred. The theme from Rocky - "Gonna Fly Now."


Now many may wonder how the assuredly nationalist and allegedly ultra-nationalist Toma could ever possibly choose fanfare music which is the personification of the American Dream. One might have expected to hear Государственный гимн Российской Федерации (the Hymn of the Russian Federation) or at least a little of the 1812 Overture of Tchaikovsky. That's a moving piece of non-Western aligned ideological music. Isn't it?

But Toma knows better. Music is a powerful subliminal motivator. And this is not the first time that he has looked across the Atlantic for his inspiration. I still remember listening to Vangelis, the Conquest of Paradise, used in the movie 1492, when Toma was running for president in 2004. I thought the choice was amazingly strong, but I could not exactly place where I heard it before. So I called the Serbian Radical Party to ask.

At first they thought I was joking. But then I was passed from apparatchik to secretary to assistant deputy someone or other who told me that it came from 1492.

"You mean the movie about Colombus discovering America?"
"I dunno."
"Are you SURE?" I asked, a little taken aback.

The ostensible and less-than-subtle message seems to be that Toma's "getting strong now" and he's "gonna fly now." The words seem to work with the ambition, but the overall effect - that he and Aca will go ten rounds with the opposition in parliament - seems a little... I don't know... American, if you see what I mean.

But these American movies nearly ALWAYS have a Happy Ending. I guess this could be Toma's point of difference.

Gotta fly now.



Komentari (5)

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Aleksandar Stosic Aleksandar Stosic 22:23 21.10.2008


toma-rocky?! oh, my god...
very progresive, I must say.
simkke simkke 22:29 21.10.2008

It's me Toma

Hey, Shekiiiiiii......It's me Tomaaaaaaaa

Aleksandar Stosic Aleksandar Stosic 22:54 21.10.2008

Re: It's me Toma

adriane, adriane!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
simkke simkke 23:06 21.10.2008

Re: It's me Toma

And, if you can change...and if i can change...everybody can change!!!

dali76 dali76 03:39 22.10.2008


American stile that Mr. Nikolic has begun to pursue in his political career can be view as a political paradox, but certainly not as a surprise.

This could be even more obvious when Mr. Nikolic during presidential debate, according to many, made better impression than his Democratic opponent and current president Mr. Tadic.
I had no problem to recognize changes that Mr. Nikolic has successfully made with regards to his prior image as a leader of ultranationalist party. Fortunately, this did not have outcome on election results.
The rhetorical speeches have always been a necessary component of most of American presidential campaigns.
The level of rhetoric’s mostly corresponded with stability in US in terms of political or economical situations.
With exception of Republican presidential Candidate Goldwater 1964) , these rhetorical speeches were clearly distinguished from ultra right extremism.
May be someone told Mr. Nikolic how Republicans lost election when Goldwater was their choice. Paradoxically enough, President Johnson who won against Goldwater thanks to his anti war campaign just couple months after inauguration led “American boys in that Asian war”.
So we can conclude that appearance has been a significant factor in politics, and Mr. Nikolic understood that quite well.



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