Life is not kind. It just isn’t. For the best of us, it is a ten-round fight. A drag out brawl, where none are left alive. The best of us learn this young, and the unluckiest of us don’t learn it until we are old and force-fed some tragedy we have no way of coping with. While some people like to watch films that reflect a cartoon society of happy endings and perfect romances, most of us live in the real world. Where life is work. And love is work. And family is work. And the best artists know how to represent that human struggle honestly. The best artists shine a light on the shadowed parts of the world where we oft refuse to look, willingly. They shine a light on those corners, and they magnify them, and they grab our eyes and MAKE US look at them. The best artists know this. The Bosch’s and Shakespeare’s of the world. And the BEST artists are not confined to a canvas when trying to reflect that misery back at us. Here, for your consideration, are five directors who make incomprehensibly sad films, yet undeniably powerful and honest films as well. And just a word of advice, these are NOT the best directors to watch if you are depressed, just saying.
Generally, the people I know will ask my advice on the more fucked up films. Even though I pretty much watch everything (except for musicals and most rom-coms), I have sort of pigeon-holed myself as this ‘horror film” guy. And with articles like this and this and this, I can understand that, and I don’t mind. But the funny thing is, because I watch SO MUCH horror, I have honestly become a bit desensitized to it. And for that very reason, the scenes that stick in my mind as being the most disturbing to me are often not from horror movies at all, as is the case with all the examples on this list. The idea is, when you see someone get disemboweled in a horror movie, that is its place. It belongs in a horror movie. It is at home in a horror movie, therefore, not very shocking. But it is those dark moments in films that are NOT horror that really resonate with the viewer. Here are five movie scenes from movies that were not horror, that I found horrifying regardless. Be forewarned, I will make sure the movies are fairly old, but there may be some spoilers ahead.
Excuse me, kids, but why the fuck do you all have shorts on in Winter?
Christmas is a magical time of year, when we shuffle around, from store to store, spending our hard-earned money on people who realistically won’t like what we get them anyway. When we are not driving onto curbs to avoid “holiday lunatics”, or fighting our way through a store to get someone the “next big thing”, we all do our best to rekindle our innocence by watching the same holiday specials, over and over again, every year. We say we do it because we love them. But that is not why we do it. We watch them on the off-chance they will rekindle our faith in humanity, or perhaps give us back some of that innocence and purity we had in us when we first saw them as a child. The word is nostalgia, and at no time is that feeling more in the air than at Christmas time. But as you get older, and more and more of you dies inside, you begin to notice things in these specials you never noticed before. The following things I learned in horror last week, watching Frosty again, only this time through different eyes. Bitter, jaded eyes. Prepare to have your mind blown. Or to laugh at me. It will definitely be one or the other and no in-betweens.
The first thing I ever tell any music blog or magazine I write for is that I won’t lie. If they are looking for a reviewer who will slather pop artists in compliment and praise just to do it, they are looking at the wrong writer for the job. To me, music is sacred. It is the one thing that saved my life at my darkest moments, and if something sucks to me, I am going to say it. I won’t just say it to be a dick, though. I will say it if I feel it, and I will always give my reasons for that decision. In some cases, though, people hold their pop stars in the same vein as they hold their religious figures, and when you say something even SLIGHTLY negative of their favorite artists, they will let you know you are, literally, the worst person who ever lived and that it would have been better if you died in the womb. No, really, they told me stuff like that. Read on to find out how one review I did Somanymp3s would brew up a shit-storm the likes of which I had never experienced before.
If you have read the Game of Thrones books, you know what is going to happen next season on that show. There is no arguing that, you just know. The show will not deviate from what is written in the books. But the Walking Dead seems to have an entirely different approach to how it tells its story. Rather than follow the time lines or plot lines in the comic, they seem to be telling the same story, but doing it quite differently. For someone like me, who has read every issue now (issue 100 just dropped and had some unforgivably disturbing moments of awesome) the show is still new and fresh, but that doesn’t mean that it deviates entirely from the comics. Here are five potential plot points that COULD happen in season 3, based around the new characters and settings that were introduced in the end of season 2. Understand, this is all speculation. These are not show spoilers, simply because none of these are set in stone. Might be some spoilers for people who intend to read the comic, so read forth at your own risk.
Rap is one area of music that I truly have a mixed relationship with. In some senses, I love the genre. The flow of the poetry they write, and the ease in which some of them can spit it is impressive. Rappers like Immortal Technique, Lupe Fiasco, and a supergroup like WZRD, featuring Kid Cudi and Dot Da Genius (who’s debut album has exactly ZERO defamatory comments and expressions aimed at women) tend to break the mold, and bring real intelligence and a sense of respect to the genre. But for every one rapper or hip hop artist that respects women, there seem to be two who are quick to remind the gender that, to them, they are nothing more than sandwich-making-cum-receptacles. It is 2012, how about we break that trend? How about we buck them off the horse and tell them it’s no longer OK? Should the whole genre suffer because of some classless assholes? No, but those classless assholes should be called out, and it is our job to do that. Maybe THEN they will know that they’ve done something wrong. That this stuff should not be tolerated. We stop buying their records, and supporting their misogyny, and they stop making money. They feel it in the wallet. If that is where we have to hit these guys (and gal), so be it. But enough already. The world needs to grow up, and this needs to stop.
Anyone with a Facebook and a Twitter is all up in arms today, because everyone’s feeds seem to rest solely in between people joking about the Batman shootings, to people mourning the Batman shootings. And it seems some of this posts have started the great debate as to when is it “too soon” to joke about something, and what is sacred and should not be joked about, ever. And if you think there is a “right or wrong” answer to this, it really isn’t that cut and dry.
If you had a male friend who videotaped himself peeing on an underage girl, would you still be friends with him? How about if he was a pedophile, CONVICTED of plying a thirteen year old girl with booze so he could have sex with her? Or what if one of your male friends beat his girlfriend until she had blackened eyes that were swollen shut? Would you be cool with him then? No, if you are a normal, adjusted adult with a moral compass, you wouldn’t be friends with them. In some cases, you may even want to beat them relentlessly. So my main question here is, why is society so quick to forgive the same awful behavior when it is a celebrity involved?