First and foremost, the crew here at Movie Guys offer our condolences and prayers to those affected by the recent tragedy that occurred in Aurora, Colorado. It was a senseless, unfortunate event that has cast a dark shadow over what we love and enjoy. In a world where there is chaos all around us, in every corner of the earth, Movies are the one true escape and art form that can bring people together, unleash and perform the impossible and the one true safe place that should shield us from the terrible awfulness that occurs all around us. Movies have so much purpose; they can awe and inspire us, takes us to worlds unknown and explore the very minds of their creators. They also educate us, show us our potential and abilities, as well as show us sadness turned to joy. Movies make us laugh and help discover ourselves, Movies are, in the words of Willy Wonka (Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory,1971), pure imagination. It is a truly sad state, when going to the movies is a fearful activity, hopefully this tragic event will be a onetime occurrence and we will be able to continue, like generations before us, to go to the movies without fear.
With that said I wish to focus on the ideology that seems to surface in the wake of events like this, the finger pointing and biased blame put on the entertainment industry. Every time something like this transpires, almost immediately the violence is said to have stemmed from Hollywood’s portrayal of violence onscreen, in video games and to a lesser extent lyrics in music. While I personally to agree that there is a lot a violence in entertainment today, however, I believe that it is no more violent than what you could find on your nightly news or that can be accessible on the internet. Additionally, millions upon millions take in violent movies and video games every year and if critics are correct in their assumption that Violent movies and games breed violence in people that watch and play them, then theoretically should we not be seeing events like this occurring in larger numbers across the globe? And if that be the case, then when I pop in Sleepless in Seattle should I not then be traveling between New York and Seattle in the hopes of tracking down the one person that I need to fall in love with? Or if I watch Old School, I will suddenly feel the urge to strip down to my birthday suit and streak through my neighborhood? Or by watching Supersize Me, start an all fast-food diet? These ideas are for the most part absurd, which what I say about Violent movies leading people to commit atrocious acts Its not a good argument or reason to blame Hollywood.
While I am not saying that Hollywood is totally guilt free, because they are not, because as I stated earlier, movies do have the ability to inspire us and they can show us how to do things, like create the perfect murder or shoot a gun, they show us these things with the logic that its viewers understand that what they depict is fiction and that we all have the common sense to keep reality and the worlds they create separate. There is no one from Warner Brothers or Paramount Studios standing at every movie theater entrance to provide us with a disclaimer about what will be depicted nor are they forcing us to watch. That’s what the rating system is for, to provide that information and provide that guideline. Aside from revamping the current rating system, Hollywood has done everything it needs to combat the few of us unable to segregate films and reality and it should be proud of itself and shouldn’t be thrown under the bus every time some lunatic shoots innocent people.
Now the question remains, What does this mean for future of movie going experience? This is not an easy question to answer, since there are many different routes you can go in that regard, from posting security and metal detectors at every theater entrance and exit (which can be costly) or nothing at all and write off the tragic shooting as a onetime freak occurrence. Personally, I would not mind seeing one or two changes to the current system but installing various security devices like metal detectors is a little extreme. I have never been a fan of fans dressing up for a night out at the movies, mainly because I don’t understand the purpose in dressing up as your favorite character for all of 2 hours but I believe that the days of dressing up for your favorite character are numbered because of this incident or at the very least, restrictions and rules will be implemented to prevent smuggling of weapons in costumes. Has this travesty ruined the movie going experience? Yes. but has it hampered it to the point that people will stop going? No, currently however, people are rightfully scared to go, but once the understanding that this was an isolated incident and should not happen again, the trust will return and the shooting will be nothing more than a tragic memory. The movie going experience will change, but not a drastically as some have predicted it will. It should be business as usual by year’s end.
Special Guest Movie Guy Writer