Matt's Blog

Am I Getting Too Old? Or Are Movies Getting Too Violent?

 

It’s mid October and we’re closing in on the end of another year but it’s just occurred to me that we’re closing in on the end of another decade.  At some point in the next few weeks, I’ll have to do up a blog on my top 10 films of the past 10 years.  It won’t be easy to choose but I’ll give it a crack.  Some films that have appeared on my top 10 lists have definitely aged better than others.

 

Movie Violence

 

I have just returned from a special preview screening of The Final Destination.  It’s the fourth in the series which began back in 2000.  I think all the actors from that first film are now living in a ditch somewhere.  It was a film that brought death to the characters and unemployment to the actors.  Well, maybe with the exception of Seann William Scott who is typecast now anyway.

 

You know you’re getting old when you think a film is too gruesome.  It’s not that I couldn’t stomach the violence but I just can’t believe how far the boundaries have been pushed.  There is no way that this could have been shown in a movie theatre 20 years ago.  Maybe not even 5 years ago.  How far can we go before we start a trend back in the other direction?  Just like I’m waiting for political correctness to take a back seat.

 

I know this film will be popular so I won’t give away too many plot details.  When I mean plot details, I mean death details.  There’s no real story – it’s just people getting killed one after the other – just like in the Saw series.

 

But it’s disturbing to think that our society can find a film like this “entertaining”.  One of the characters tries to kill himself before death gets to him first.  He tries sleeping pills but throws them up.  He tries to gas himself in the garage but it doesn’t work.  He tries to hang himself from the ceiling but it doesn’t work.  I can think of plenty of people who would find these scenes distressing.  To cap it all off, two friends rescue him (from the hanging) and the magically realises the value of life and treats himself to a bottle of champagne.  I didn’t realise depression was such an easy disease to cure.

 

I’m not sure which death scene was the worst.  Each seemed to come with a lot of blood and a lot of body parts strewn all over the place.  The way that the make-up artists and special effects crew have captured the look of a freshly extricated intestine is a sight to behold.

 

To each their own however.  I think that if you want to see a film like this, you should be entitled to do so… within reason.  If you want to be shocked and if you want to have guts flying at you in 3D, then this film is for you.  Soak it up.  Even I admit that it had its moments.  Sometimes we need a film to get the blood pumping.  I’d rather see this than a new Sandra Bullock movie.

 

Unfortunately, I have no idea how the Classification Board of Australia have deemed this an “MA” rated film as opposed to an “R” rated film.  That means that any 15 year old can see this without parental supervision.  It’s this ridiculous decision that raises my eyebrows.  I know they will tell you otherwise but I think there are plenty of people in the 15-17 year age bracket who shouldn’t be exposed to this kind of violence and gruesomeness.

 

I then compare this rating with the R ratings dished out to films like Y Tu Mama Tambien, Candy and Zack & Miri Make A Porno.  Did the fact that The Final Destination has a light-heartedness make a difference to those on the Classification Board?  I still don’t know how it’s different from films like Halloween, Hostel, Wolf Creek and the last two Saw movies.

 

That’s my tirade for another week.  I’m off to find something a little more conservative on the telly…