„Why are they making all these stupid fucking movies?“
Whether you want it or not, media is omnipresent in your life. It stimulates your world view and drives you into a corner and you are most likely not to realize it. Is the fiction you see on your TV actually reality? And is the news really covering everything you need to know? How much influence do you think you have on what your brain takes in?
This film makes you rethink these answers.
The fact that this film was banned in Ireland and that other countries have temporally put it on the index speaks for itself. As does the fact that you can find it on various online sources without any trouble. Fancy some sick scenes in high resolution?
Natural Born Killers (1994) is a film directed by Oliver Stone, based on a story by Quentin Tarantino. It is unmistakably set in the US and draws on a satire of society and the power of media. The film’s content consists of highly violent scenes and does not beautify the dangers of the modern lifestyle as other Hollywood movies tend to do. The story of
Natural Born Killers is the story of Mickey (Woody Harrelson) and Mallory (Juliette Lewis). Two individuals that are “naturally born mass murderers” and are victims of their traumatized childhood. Their tale begins when Mickey murders Mallory’s parents with her and when they then set off to their adventure that culminates with 52 victims in total. There is no reason for their killings, no logical pattern. But they always leave one person alive. One witness to tell the story to the media. Wayne Gale (Robert Downey Jr.) serves as the representative of mass media in their tale. He appears obsessed with the mass murderers, builds a metaphorical shrine around them, reports new killings like a live coverage of an “important” football game. Eventually, or rather instantly, society gets hooked on the sensational news. Mass murderers. A couple celebrating their killings and purely enjoying it. And the media being up to date with anything those bloody valentines do- surely, this is something worth following. Following turns into glorification and what once was brutal reality is now nothing but the story of two celebrated TV Stars in their natural habitat. Yes they get caught by the law eventually; but then again- not really. The satire reaches its climax when Wayne interviews Mickey within the prison and suddenly it is not as relaxed as the face of media thought it would be. One should think that the media is put off by finding itself in a moment of crisis, but no, Wayne embraces it and will pay for that. In the end the camera is the only witness left. The tale found its end.
This film has to be seen as highly controversial and it surely isn’t an easy one to watch. Seeing it reaching Hollywood status (www.hollywood.com !) while mocking the media seems a bit off. What one can’t deny, however, are the very appealing concepts of film making. Black and White vs colour, comic book style, multiple angles etc… When you watch this film, try and find the use of all of it. Is there any?