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March 24 2006

V For Vendetta

I hate to say it, but I’m not big on going out to the theater any more. It always seems more hassle than it’s worth. Ticket prices are climbing, snacks are over priced, if you have to go to the bathroom you can’t pause it and so on. Hollywood wonders why theater attendance is down, and like the music industry, they are quick to blame piracy. Well, like the music industry, I would like to say how about lowering your prices and making better quality films instead of releasing total schlock? Just a thought.

So, all that being said, it takes a lot of convincing to get me to go to the movies any more until I have total faith in a project. While I loved the graphic novel of V For Vendetta, the writer, Alan Moore, had his name removed from the project because he didn’t like the changes they made to it. To Warner Brothers defense, Alan Moore removes his name from everything (he also wrote the books From Hell and The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen were based on) because he is…well…to be blunt, a bit wacky. Here’s a picture to scare your children with. After glowing reviews from some friends (thanks Farah and Rachel) of mine, I decided to head out to the theater on a slow work afternoon and see it.

Wow.

Really, that’s the whole review “wow”. The script was done by the Wachowski brothers, the creators of the Matrix Trilogy, which it is well known, I thought was just a horrible series of movies, so I was really hesitant about how this film would be. Overall I think they kept the best bits of the original work, added a few things that I thought worked well and cut a tremendous amount of sub-plots that were really unnecassary to the main thrust of the story. The changes are significant, enough to make it almost like another work, but with the same basic theme of “governments should not be allowed to run wild over it’s people.”

The big question you are left with when this movie ends is have you just rooted for a terrorist or a freedom fighter? Is V someone fighting for the betterment of people, or is he a run of the mill terrorist? Honestly, if you see the movie, the answer is obvious, he is a freedom fighter. Once the plot is fully revealed, and you know what all this goverment has done to it’s people, there is no way you can view him as anyone but someone fighting for a greater good. I don’t want to say too much so as not to spoil anyone who has not seen it, but believe me, it would be impossible to convince me that V is evil.

Going back to what I said about Hollywood should improve the quality of movies, this is a prime example to me of what films should be. Three times I got goosebumps during this movie. THREE TIMES! I don’t remember the last time a movie did that to me! (for the curious folks the scenes were Lady Justice, Dominoes and Parliament…if you’ve seen the movie you will know what all of those scenes are) This film is filled with power, hope, a message and a meaning. It is NOT just a blow-them-up action film, it is a story of accepting your fellow man and that rejecting him can lead to nothing but trouble. That, as the movie tag line says “People should not fear their goverments, goverments should fear their people.” Do not just sit back and take what your government says as the gospel. If you disagree with it, speak out! Make your voice heard! Do not grow complacent just because you are comfortable with the way your life is going. Do not sit back and think “Oh well, this is how things are.”

There is so much more I would like to say, especially the journey of Evey’s character, but I don’t want to spoil the movie for anyone planning to see it. I may revisit this subject after the DVD release, because I really believe this is a film that is going to be on my mind for quite awhile.



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