Thursday, November 02, 2006

Just Cause and Rope- movie review

Just Cause


Somehow the movies that arrived yesterday for j. and I respectively both had to do with murder. We're not big fans of whodunits and only watch the occasional thriller, so this seemed like a strange coincidence.

Rope is a Hitchcock film, something to ponder on rather than excite. The thesis is that morality only holds true for the masses and the upper crust, the inteligentsia, may do as they like up to and including murder. Jimmy Stewart is true to form. When confronted with the practical reality of his idealogy, he admits his error.

Just Cause had me cutting off the blood flow to j.'s hand and even covering my eyes at one point. I think Ed Harris deserved an Oscar for being creepy to the max. It included a plot twist that separated it from the ordinary. In addition, the Everglades are downright creepy.

Two questions arise.

Number one: who decides who has value in society? Is it the intelligent? That's mostly a matter of breeding. The social elite? A combination of birth and fakery. The educated? The employed? The nice guy? If we were going to start pruning the undesirables from the world, who would decide who goes first?

Number two: should we use the death penalty? It comes down to a question of who gets to decide again. We've decided to trust a jury of ordinary people to decide guilt or innocence. We already know that innocent people get convicted and guilty ones go free every day. I'm not ready to trust justice to the caprice of fate, but is it right to take a life for a life? How about a life for two lives, or three or four? Who decides?


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