Hollywood’s gun fetish

SO I just watched the trailer for “Gangster Squad,” and it goes something like this: Gun, gun, shot of phallic-looking building, Ryan Gosling, gun, firefight, is that Nick Nolte?, firefight, guns getting handed out like candy, someone getting hit with a gun barrel, guy pointing gun in other guy’s face, gun, gun, firefight, explosion, raid involving guns, casings falling cinematically to the floor.

It’s two and a half minutes long, so I left out a lot of guns.

Less than a month after the Newtown tragedy, this is what Hollywood is peddling, without shame: A firearms-glorifying culture that competes, inside our brains, with the impulse to stop the spread of actual firearms. A few weeks ago, the group Mayors Against Illegal Guns posted a video featuring outraged-looking movie stars, urging the public to rally for gun control. Someone soon reposted it on YouTube, spliced with images of those actors shooting guns onscreen.

The blanket charge of hypocrisy wasn’t entirely fair. Some of those scenes were actually trying to spoof gun culture. Sometimes violence is used in the service of art. And studios wouldn’t make these movies if the public didn’t want them, right?

Well, maybe, maybe not.

(Read the rest of my Boston Globe column here.)

The honest acceptance speech

Inspired by the Golden Globes. Written very quickly, in a burst of amusement and mild disgust. This column originally ran in the Boston Globe on January 15, 2013.

 

I WON! I won! And here I am, up here, looking down at all of you, and I’m so nervous! It’s terrifying to be adored during award season! I just don’t know what to say!

Luckily, I prepared this acceptance speech.

First, I have to thank this esteemed body of voters, which has been giving me these awards since I was a child. People say this is a second-tier award, but I don’t care, because everybody wants one anyway. Just look at that pop star across the room, glaring at me. She lost a few minutes ago, and now her soul is turning black.

Next, I’d like to thank my team: My manager Bob, my publicist Sue — I adore you, Sue — my folks at ICA, my peeps at CVS, Ms. Prunetta, who makes all of my daily style and juice decisions, and Orville, who gets my groceries.

(Read on.)