Random Thread for October, 2017


As you all know, I live in Las Vegas. I was awakened by a text from my sister at about 3 in the morning (she lives in New Jersey) asking if I was okay. I was wondering why the concern when she told me about the shooting. I went back to sleep but got more texts, so when I woke up at 6 for work I put one of those damn “I’m okay” things on Facebook.

I hardly ever go to the Strip and certainly not for a country music festival, but I’m only about ten miles from where it happened. No one is safe, as long as these kinds of weapons are legal. And no “good guy with a gun” could have taken out a target on the 32nd floor from the ground. What I fear is happening is that we are becoming numb to these attacks. In 1966, Charles Whitman, the sniper at the University of Texas tower, killed 17. It was world-wide news. Today it’s small potatoes, because he was using single-action rifles, and his shooting spree lasted over 90 minutes. You can kill 17 in less than 17 seconds now.

The American fetish with guns is so strange and so deadly. We’ve got to get over it. If you’re keeping guns because you’re afraid of the government, well, you and your AR15 would be vaporized by an Apache helicopter. Guns in the home are statistically more likely to be used on family members than against intruders. “Responsible gun owners” are constantly being shot by their toddlers. It’s enough.


About Jackrabbit Slim

Location: Vegas, Baby! I’m much older than the other whippersnappers here, a baby boomer. I tend to be more snobbish about film, disdaining a lot of the multiplex fare for “cinema.” My favorite films: Woody Allen’s oeuvre (up until about 1990), The Godfather, The Graduate, A Hard Day’s Night, Pulp Fiction. Politics: Well, George McGovern was my political hero. I’m also a prickly atheist. Occupation: Poised to be an English teacher in Las Vegas. For many years I was an editor at Penthouse Magazine. My role on this blog seems to be writing lots of reviews and being the resident Oscar maven.

11 responses »

  1. America & Australia have many similar cultural differences but the attitude towards guns isn’t one of them. I think the vast majority of Australians just don’t get how attached such a large section of the US population are towards gun rights.

    When the Port Arthur massacre occurred here in 1996 that led to an almost universal gun buyback scheme and severe tightening of gun laws… and this occurred under a conservative PM who was otherwise very supportive of the US on issues (including the Iraq War).

  2. A vast majority of Americans don’t understand how attached America is to guns – but we know exactly why we are. Money. Corporate control of one of the largest corporate overlords we have: the NRA.

    We allow a corporation to destroy our food to sell chemicals. We allow a corporation to arm so many to kill so many and we pass laws called ‘stand your ground’. We allow corporations to buy our politicians and our supreme court says those corporations are people.

    A majority of Americans are against it, but unfortunately, a very few control it all. For money.

  3. All those best pictures won because everyone was scared of the most powerful man in the business. He made and broke so many people, controlled so much, that it took twenty or so years(?) for this to happen?
    It’s no secret what a horror show the man was, so I only wonder why it took so long to come forward with – some of these allegations are insane. Masturbating in front of people and making them watch? What?

  4. Sharon Waxman ran a piece about Matt Damon and Russell Crowe helping to kill a NYT story about a Weinstein assault in the early 00’s. I have a feeling you’re going to hear about a lot of those in the coming weeks.

    On the flipside: I’d imagine you’re going to see a lot of high profile talent stay silent on this because Harvey undoubtedly knows where all the bodies are buried on an entire generation of filmmakers,

  5. Oscar-winning cinematographer Walter Lassally passes away at 90.

    His career is full of noteworthy productions – groundbreaking ‘kitchen sink’ British early 1960s films, the Best Picture winner Tom Jones, Zorba The Greek (his Oscar win) and numerous Merchant Ivory productions. In that context that he was the cinematographer for the Matthew Modine/Phoebe Cates raunchy 1980s teen comedy ‘Private School’ seems an oddity to say the least.

  6. HAGEBOC comes early this year!

    Between Thor and multiple Holiday-themed films opening the first week of November, we’ve got to get started early. Since we’ve got a couple of weeks I’m open to any suggestions re: format, scoring, maintaining participation, etc.

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