Tuesday, August 31, 2010

bullets (over hollywood)

i found this commentary amusing, interesting and sad. enjoy.

Stop or I'll shoot! Not that this will hurt you:

Near the end of "The Expendables," Sylvester Stallone is shot at point-blank range, drops to the ground moaning -- and a few minutes later is totally fine. In the recent series finale of "24," Jack Bauer is stabbed in the stomach and bleeding profusely, then shot through the shoulder at close range -- and an hour or so later, beats up a huge strong guy, then runs away to escape the country, showing no effects from blood loss or wounds. In the season finale of the new FX series "Justified," the anti-hero, Boyd Crowder, is shot at close range with a sniper rifle and not only doesn't bleed but 15 minutes later drives away, completely fine, to chase a bad guy. In "Salt," Angelina Jolie is shot at close range yet, a few moments later, can kill a huge trained assassin with her bare hands, then shortly after that is able to jump from a helicopter into the Potomac River, swim to shore and run through a forest.

[+] EnlargeStallone/Rourke
AP Photo/Chris PizzelloAt age 64, Sylvester Stallone needs about three minutes to recover from being shot. After he turns 65, it may take a bit longer.

In the first Beverly Hills Cop movie, at the climax, Eddie Murphy is shot at close range, then a moment later is completely fine and telling jokes. In the series finale of "Miami Vice," Tubbs is shot at close range, then when seen the next morning not only is totally fine but is stylishly dressed in an expensive silk suit. In "Die Hard 4," Justin Long is shot at close range, and 30 minutes later by the movie's chronology is completely normal -- and Long plays a meek, timorous person. In that same movie, Bruce Willis falls 30 feet from an apartment window into a large trash bin, then the same day falls 40 feet down the elevator shaft of a power plant, then falls out of a crashing jet fighter (don't ask), then is shot twice -- yet is completely fine despite receiving no medical treatment other than gauze pads taped over two bullet wounds. And Stallone? In the 1997 movie "Cop Land," his character is shot at close range, then drives from New Jersey to the Wall Street part of Manhattan without treatment or, apparently, any effect on his body.

These are only some of many examples. Increasingly, action movies show the hero or heroine being shot yet suffering no ill effects -- while, needless to say, bad guys who are even sneezed on drop to the ground instantly dead. (In the egregiously overrated "The Dark Knight," the Joker stabs a huge muscular thug with a pencil and the guy dies in two seconds. Stallone is lucky he was only shot, not attacked with a pencil!) Maybe this is part of overall Hollywood unrealism: With the advent of computer-generated special effects, trivial stuff like physical law has ceased to matter, so why should bullets act realistically? But there's a disturbing aspect. Hollywood sells violence, violence, violence -- and then with movie stars, people the public empathizes with, suggests: Hey, bullets don't really do any harm, you'll be fine 20 minutes later. So fire away!

from Greg Easterbrook's article on ESPN.com (Tuesday Morning Quarterback)

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