Jay Cronley: Crazies blaming movies is just crazy
BY JAY CRONLEY World Staff Columnist
Sunday, January 27, 2013
1/27/13 at 4:46 AM
I wrote a novel about a guy who dressed up as a clown and went to rob a bank.
When the cops surrounded the place, the robber took off his clown suit, and he and some friends went outside pretending to be hostages in need of medical attention. They were given coffee and cookies and comfortable seats.
Then when the police refocused on the bank, the guy who had been dressed as the clown, and his friends, left with the money - not a bad comic illusion in anybody's book.
Spike Lee seemed to like the plot so much, he made something similar called "Inside Man" with Denzel Washington.
Get with the program: One week after a Bill Murray movie based on my novel was released, somebody dressed as a clown robbed a bank in New Jersey. I remember thinking: I wish the crook hadn't done that.
But nobody was hurt. The robber didn't take off the clown suit and was arrested.
When you write something with a criminal twist, you are for all practical purposes showing the cops how to defend against such an act.
But with the nuts increasing in what must be record numbers, the relationship between the creative people who deal in graphic violence and the public should be routinely updated.
"Bullet to the Head," starring Sylvester Stallone opens this weekend.
Walk at sundown anyone?
Tell it to the judge: One of the first to try to blame an outside influence for a criminal endeavor was the man who used the "Twinkie Defense," saying too much sugar caused him to kill San Francisco politician Harvey Milk. The defense worked to the degree that the killer was only convicted of manslaughter, not murder.
Violence and sex are what you put in films when you run out of quality material. It's much simpler to write "She shot his head off," as direction, than it is to write original dialogue.
Numerous lunatics have claimed that the film "Natural Born Killers" caused them to gulp drugs and slaughter any innocent in their paths.
A lawsuit about this one actually made it to court, to a Louisiana judge, who said that there was no proof that the filmmaker had intended to incite violence. The lawsuit was thrown into the swamp.
And just this week, a 17-year-old male near Dallas said that a remake of the film "Halloween" had motivated him to murder his sister and mother.
The right to freedom of speech has to win any debate about creativity. The crazies can make any freedom seem costly.
Original Print Headline: Crazies blaming movies is just crazy