But here’s the thing.
When you read that Universal will look to reimburse cinemas for extra security costs over the weekend for the release of Straight over Compton, the hyped musical biopic of infamous rap group NWA, the pissed off Pitt
Of course people will consider the reasoning just. Racial anxieties in America are currently at their peak. The many protests that have featured in areas such as Ferguson as well as the violent disruptions have been well documented. I’m sure many could explain to me why people are nervous about a film in which the lead characters; who hail from the city with two groups of the most notable crime gangs, named one of their most famous anthems: Fuck
But shouldn’t we consider, just for a minute, the reasoning behind these protests? Why has so much tension presented itself? Why has so much anger flared up? One only needs to Google the words Black Lives Matter and read the many over the deaths of unarmed African Americans at the hands of armed Caucasian policemen. The protests that have occurred have yet again highlighted that Americas relationship with race is as convoluted and complex as its relationship with the same firearms being used to extinguish life. So quite strangely, the more black people killed or mistreated, the more protests occur. The more protests occur, the more conflicts flare. The more conflicts flare, the more studios worry about the (black) entertainment they release.
Annoyingly, I find this all gets a little Manson’s Helter Skelter. Was 8 Mile placed under such scrutiny when Eminem was at the height of his powers and notoriety? A film which treads lightly upon a gang culture within a multi-cultural, depressed town? Did any worry transpire when its infamous star (whom George Bush stated was “the most dangerous threat to American children since polio”) went on to pick up the best song Oscar? Nope. I doubt anyone would have believed that a woman who attack a man with pepper spray during a Mr Turner screening either. Mr Turner: a three hour period piece about a talented British Painter. Not one for frisking and metal detectors.
Can we also highlight that the shocking murders caused by
I ask because in the years I've spent watching dashing white heroes, shoot and kill aliens either intergalactic or foreign. It's always considered for the right reasons. And no one believes that they the violence off the screens and into reality. When I read the articles and reports for the likes of American Sniper, I see no tightened security measures. Only the records they've broken at the box office. Of course, there's the political fallout, but no pre-emptive action taken. Looking at the articles that surrounded that movie, it's safe to say that a lot of fans of that movie seemed to enjoy guns.
Of course not every gun carrier in America is a troubled, unhinged person. And not every fan of of films with gun violence is going to start popping off like it's the 4th of July. That's a spiteful
This isn't to say that violence couldn't happen. Even looking from the outside in, tensions do appear to be running exceedingly high and I hope that no one does something to justify the already, clearly high suspicions. But here we are, looking at a carefully worded statement of heightened security over an "urban" film (sigh) which looks ready to do well at the box office. This to me speaks volumes. I do not wish to belittle the large and complex issues that a beautiful country (and it is beautiful)