I recently saw Apocalypto (by Mel Gibson) on tv, though it's been around for years.
It was colourful and brought the ancient Mayan culture to life. In using the Mayan language, it seemed to be respectful of the indigenous people. Mel Gibson even employed university experts to make sure he got it right.
However, I immediately began to see a kind of sub-text to the show.
The written comment at the very start of the movie was begging to be interpreted:
It said essentially that a people are destroyed from the inside before they fall to an outside power.
So, could it mean the Mayans fell to the Spaniards because the Mayans were rotten and corrupt?
According to Wikipedia, the film showed the Mayans are wasteful of natural resources, and of human life in sacrifices.
It also was said to be a parable for modern, wasteful societies.
So, more interpretation: Gibson is a strong personality and not afraid to express his 'radical' version of Catholicism and its interest in suffering and pain (see his other film, The Passion of the Christ, blood and guts on a stick). Apparently, Gibson said his film was about visceral fear and much like the Christ film, he hit the spot. The violence was more realistic and thus scarier.
But, that's not the point. I suppose he actually wants to say that
in order to say that, no matter how many thousands of the Mayans (and others) that were enslaved or killed by Europeans, they were savages who would have suffered one way or another because that is the fate of savages.
So, he is trying to excuse the inexcuseable.