Thursday, March 14, 2013

Online Assignment #2

I’m not a big movie watcher, so I have not seen any of these movies talked about in the article.  In fact, the most recent movie I can think of that I’ve seen that has a historical context is Saving Private Ryan.  Based on what I remember hearing from teachers and family members, the war scenes in the movie were accurate, however, the “saving” part of a soldier was extremely exaggerated.  Apparently, there was no large battle over a bridge to save a soldier as in the movie.  Speilberg had taken a less exciting story about the war and turned it into an action packed and emotional filled movie.

               For movies, I believe that their accountability to the truth is based on the type of movie created.  If a director is trying to produce a historically accurate film, then the movie should line up with the facts of history.  This makes me wonder about movies like Lincoln and Zero Dark Thirty which appear to make historical claims.  If the directors of those movies want to make a historical movie, then by all means they should maintain to the facts.  However, if these movies were to be based on entertaining the audience, then I believe it to be fine to make movies for entertaining and not on historical fact.  However, if these movies were based loosely on historical fact, but not entirely, then the producers should make a disclaimer that the work, while based on history, is not entirely accurate.  

            In the end, I believe that the film makers need to be held accountable for what they produce.  Whether or not the film is based entirely, partially, or not at all on truth, there needs to be some sort of communication to the audience on what kind of movie it is.  Movies are another form of media, as is television, radio, and newspaper articles.  I agree with the article that journalists are meant for finding the facts, but disagree that movies can less accountable to the truth due to needing to create an exciting film.  If a movie is made to be exciting, then by all means make it interesting.  However, make sure the public knows the movie is fictional.  I’m not sure if Saving Private Ryan would be as interesting if it didn’t have its increased action and drama.  In any case, I find the movie more realistic because I can feel the drama the soldiers felt on D-day, even though I know the actual plot of the movie is exaggerated.  Even though I know the work is untrue, I can appreciate the movie’s success in letting me see the consequences of the World War.  

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