Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Four Lions

I won tickets to see an advance screening of Four Lions last night, so after work my boyfriend and I headed to the cinema and took our seats, unsure of what we were going to see, knowing only that it was a comedy based around terrorists by comedian Chris Morris.

It is a darkly, darkly funny movie, it had me constantly bent over in my seat roaring with laughter, at the somewhat outrageous actions of the primary cast. I wouldn't recommend it to everyone, just as I wouldn't recommend a David Lynch film to all my friends, but for those of you with open minds I think it is definitely worth the ticket.

I've read a few reviews since watching it that have said it trivialises the 'terrorist issue' but I really don't agree with that. The 5 terrorists are given personalities, back stories and families but it doesn't set out to justify their actions, rather it forces us to see them as humans and not demons. And isn't that one of the serious problems facing us at the moment?  It is common in western society to simply see anyone who follows Islam as a terrorist, or anyone from Pakistan, Iraq, and Afghanistan etc as conspiring towards our downfall, even if their family has lived in Australia (or England or America) for many generations. The fear that has been present ever since September 11 has clouded our judgement and stopped us from seeing individuals, instead we see a dark monster, a demon who endeavours to end our lives.

People have a right to be angry over September 11 or the Bali bombings or any other terrorist activity which has resulted in the death of innocent people, but there is no use letting this anger worsen. I've often thought that it isn't until you can laugh at an issue that you can move past it. This movie raises the issues facing our society now and by doing it in a way that promotes laughter, and recognition of the characters as people it soothes some of the anger and hurt that has been raging for so long and allows us to begin moving forwards.

I have only respect for this movie and what it set out to do, but I will not be surprised if I hear friends speak negatively against it. Perhaps it is too soon to laugh at this issue, maybe the wounds are still too fresh. But there is no use continuing to tip-toe around the issue and letting the anger fester. Please at least give this movie a try.


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