I’m a big fan again, I swear!
The worst part about not being a fan of Force Awakens or The Last Jedi in the Twitterverse is that I’m immediately lumped in and generalized with the rest of the haters. Except some of the haters… just kind of need to grow up.
I was at Fantastic Fest and kept joking with my friend that I was going to have a “real talk” with Rian Johnson about The Last Jedi (I never actually planned to do it, if anything I’d just pick his brain about filmmaking in general since I’ve loved all his other works). Around the time of his arrival my friend pulled me aside and said “Don’t say anything about Last Jedi.”
I reaffirmed that I had never intended to, and he mentioned that the Alamo Drafthouse brought in extra security after Rian Johnson received some death threats – are you fucking kidding me?
I liked it. Don’t get me wrong.
I love how strong the story is, a true story, about these former-strippers turned robbers. It’s a rare female-drive anti-hero flick that does so many things right. Except sometimes… it’s messaging gets a little mixed.
Hear me out.
Through the narrative framing of Destiny (Constance Wu) telling her story to a journalist (Elizabeth played by Julia Stiles) we hear a lot expository dialogue about how we’re meant to “feel” about the crimes these women are committing.
There is one thing that always draws me back to South Park and that is the unbridled authenticity of co-creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone.
Have I always agreed with their social/political commentary? Nope, but I don’t take it too seriously when I don’t because, after all, it’s South Park.
In our current world we approach controversy and skeptical news events from the perspective of: “How do we, as a community, feel about this?” Outrage plagues social media, and outrage over that outrage plagues our day-to-day conversations.
For those who need a quick update and any and all things “Joker controversy” The Thrillist has a great breakdown here.
From the beginning the “Joker will inspire violence” controversy was silly and entirely manufactured. At any moment ANY work of art (Music, Movies, Shows) can influence violence. The thing is though it’s been disproven in study after study that the weight of that influence is minimal.
Art has been a scapegoat since paintings and books were considered demonic and often burnt. Again, influence and desensitization are applicable, but to a degree that is fractional. If someone is troubled enough to commit a massive attack of violence – some other more fucked up shit has happened to them in their life.