Jamie Foxx is one of a bevy of Hollywood celebrities who appear in a new video urging Washington to come up with a plan to end gun violence. Chris Rock, Amy Poehler, Cameron Diaz, Jennifer Aniston and Will Ferrell join Foxx in pleading: “For the children of Sandy Hook, we demand a plan.”
But of course, like liberals everywhere, they’re talking about more controls over you and me — not what they do in their own lives. Or even more significantly, the on-screen violence that pays many of them so well. A majority of the films that received a Best Picture nomination this year are replete with bloodshed. Take gun violence out of Zero Dark Thirty, Django Unchained, Argo, and Lincoln and there wouldn’t be much a movie left. Hey, murder and mayhem sell.
The ultra-violent flick Django Unchained has already raked in more than $129 million at the box office. Foxx plays a revenge-seeking ex-slave.
While hosting Saturday Night Live last month, Foxx bragged about all the bloodshed in the Quentin Tarantino-directed movie.
“I kill all the white people in the movie,” he boasted. “How great is that?”
That’s actually a bit of an exaggeration. Django doesn’t kill all the white people — just a whole bunch of them.
And, of course, all of the violence in Django Unchained and others like it is portrayed with as much realism as possible, which these days means very realistically indeed.
But movies are just one source of the mindless violence that permeates our society these days. Cable television has always been known for pushing the borders of sex and violence. Now, broadcast TV is following suit. “The Following,” a new series on Fox Television, literally wallows in blood as star Kevin Bacon tries to stop a serial killer and his cult of followers.
I’ve seen estimates that by the time the average teenage male reaches high school, he has witnessed more than 10,000 killings on TV and in the movies. If he’s a fan of ultra-violent video games — as was the case for Adam Lanza, the deranged shooter in Newtown, Conn. — that number is no doubt considerably higher.
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