I was still in my teenage years, perhaps fifteen or sixteen, when my eyes were first introduced to Pulp Fiction; Reservoir Dogs and films like Scarface. Innocent eyes, I should say. Not because parents didn’t care about the MPAA and the definition of the R, PG, G, NC-17 etc, and films to me were always that one great getaway. I was aware enough that smoking and drinking was not going to get me anywhere in life. Parents were always behind me, helped me in any way possible with all of their strength. I will, forever, be grateful for their efforts towards my education and understanding of life. Understanding of life, I believe, every man on earth must think about. See, I was fond of films like I am today, and parents were aware that my most favorite toy was the screen of cinema.
‘Don’t learn the negative points, but the positive ones from films’ is the exact phrase that fell like pearls, shining from my father’s tongue. Watching violence in films at that age didn’t bother me or parents as they believed in me. I mentioned the titles in the above paragraph, for its makers are not afraid of portraying violence, drug use and cursing. If memory serves me correct, in Scarface, the character of Tony Montana uses the F-word about 72 times. The graphic violence of Pulp Fiction; Reservoir Dogs, as we know are one of the main reasons the films are famous for, besides their artistic points and the tasty dialogue, of course. I don’t want anyone to get me wrong. To be honest; I cherish till this date the titles that I mentioned. As an aspiring screenwriter, I comprehend the significance of reality. Cinema captures what we see and hear in reality, the only difference, actually, let me put it this way; the only wall, that invisible wall that some at times fails to see, is that reality at first on paper is written from an artistic point of view. – Then the film-maker follows the steps of that screenplay.
Art is a line that not many dare to cross, and when one decides to cross, especially if one is a writer or director, he/she must not step back and stay in the corner. Art I believe is a land that knows no boundary. Alfred Hitchcock enjoyed by presenting terror, he became the master of suspense for no reason. The list of names after Hitchcock will get lengthier, starting with Eastwood; Tarantino, De Palma; Oliver Stone; Antoine Fuqua and from Polanski to Mel Gibson. These powerful names are behind some of the most powerful films in history of cinema. As I sit and look back at times, not only at the oeuvre of these great auteurs, but at cinema in general, and when I mention the term ‘cinema, I mean, films from the era of Hitchcock to the contemporary work of auteurs of this generation, like Ben Affleck; Christopher Nolan; Rian Johnson; Andrew Dominik; Neil Blomkamp, the list can go on, in their body of work what we really see, and if not yet perceived thoroughly, is rage of artistic medium. Besides such rage, there is always a way of communication with reality, as if the screen is breathing and the viewer feels and conceive the notions of these artists body of work.
Cinema is full of anger as in Scarface, Tony Montana, conquers almost the whole city, we witness the character’s success and his failure. Reservoir Dogs presents the anger in men, who are angry with the society. The Town depicts the anger and rage of two friends against their present; past and future. From Nolan’s Memento to his recent work, Batman Trilogy, the audiences are clearly witnessing the definition of rage and anger; from the point of view of the film-maker and screenwriter, of course. The actors, when it comes to cinematic anger, in pretty much all of these films, are the middle men. The essentiality here is how artists dare to take what reality presents and how, each of these artists respectively, in their artistic formats, capture the essence of this tragic world and to the audience they present on the screen the definition of their society through form of entertainment.
Are these film-makers/writers angry at the reality? – The answer to this question really depends who you are going to ask. If you ask me, I believe that yes, some of these artists are in fact quite angry at the reality. Tarantino in his films always present violence, and often he angers others, as some don’t like the style of violence he is fond of when he makes his films. Inglorious Basterds and his Kill Bill films are pure violent work of art, full of anger, as his characters are out to take revenge. His latest work, Django Unchained, is once again proving to us all that what artists at times feel is that there are many things in this world that are not equitable. Spaghetti Western and slavery are two different worlds entirely. But, what Tarantino, as an artist is trying to convey is that through art anything is quite possible to achieve, I don’t think Tarantino is portraying slavery as the new genre, he is showing slavery, the evil deed of some man, in a western genre to simply dictate that reality, which is written in the pages of history, was rough.
I believe cinematic anger is essential, and without it, cinema will not survive. No matter from which angle you look at it, conflict in story is the main ingredient. Therefore, it is important for artists to rely on reality. What some, I believe must learn from films is the difference between negativity and positivity. Remember, films are much livelier, so when kids watch them, I believe parents should say, son, let me know if you can filter the negative from positive and positive from the negative points.
Author I Rohan Mohmand I Founder & Editor in Chief I He’s a film enthusiast, screenwriter and a news reporter at Mnightfans.com. He’s also the co-founder of Robopocalypsemovienews.com, who writes a column on film at Cinematicimpact.com.