Sunday, February 26, 2006

Mr. & Mrs. Smith

The movie, "Mr. & Mrs. Smith," has many of the same elements as "Grosse Point Blank," a 1997 film where John Cusack plays the assassin. "Grosse Point Blank" has an R rating for violence and language. "Mr. and Mrs. Smith" rated a PG-13. Still the same violence but not the strong language. For elements of humor, "Grosse Point Blank" wins out.

Both movies were shoot-em uppers like few others. The characters fire over walls, around corners, with no aim but great success. People die all over, but with minimum blood loss. These movies both seem to come out of the glory days of westerns. It seems like the same Indians are getting killed over and over again.

We live in a culture where violence is considered part of life. We eat, breath and wear it. We are fascinated and entertained by it. But it is nothing like reality. The reality is that people are killed and maimed by violence. Gang members and innocent bystanders die in our streets. Young men and women, children and older people die in war. Violence in movies and on our TV screens insulates and desensitizes us from these realities.

If we understood the realities of violence, would we be so eager to go to war? Maybe not. But on the other hand, real violence genders hate. And hate is the great opium of war. It makes men foolish and uncaring. Hate engenders war and makes us killers.

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