teen requested we go get some dvds this weekend so got Battle Royale II, Brother (Takeshi Kitano), Kiyouki no Sakura, Blue Spring, Ping Pong, and a Korean teen movie: Chingu / Friend. I picked out Bruce Lee, Game of Death and the Oshima film: Night and Fog in Japan (about a young couple who are involved in student and left wing unrest in Japan in 1960, originally released in '60). 80 bucks of bloody beat them up videos. Almost all the ones the teen picked out focus on teens involved in violent situation.
when i was young i never shied away from "situations." i was a skinny guy who ran with the toughies. I was often "tested." I was shot at a couple of times, both times i faced down or disarmed the guy. kicked in the ribs so much that I could not get out of bed for several days (but during the fight I kept getting up until my opponent gave in; i.e. he got exhausted and tire of knocking me down). attacked by knife and 2 by 4 wielding assailants. yet i am concerned to see the teen so focused on these depictions of violent characters made to appear heroic. even if they often die, they have "beautiful" heroic death.
Perhaps my youthful screamishness has returned. I remember as a preteen convincing my parents to take me to a double feature of Corman/Poe Tales of Terror and Pit and the Pendulum at the drive-in. I was about 10-11 years old. My younger brothers (1 and 2 and 4 years younger) fell asleep. I found the swishing blade in Pit and the Pendulum so scary (I hate anticipation) that I lay down in the back seat and feigned sleep so I could surrepticiously cover my ears and avoid the scene. My imagination was far more gristly than what was showed on the screen in those days.
In my early 20s i was ready for depictions of total explicit pain and dismemberment. I think I somehow felt that "society" should see and know "the worst." Perhaps I could not anticipate "the worst" being so widely embraced.
And then there is this jesus movie, the Passion. I'll eventually see it, but won't rush out for it.