Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Cool in a Different Sense
With this week's film being RoboCop, the theme of cool is 'Cool Satire'. Now you might ask yourself why the theme is 'Cool Satire' and not just 'Cool Coolness'. Let's face it, RoboCop is one cool movie, but in class we found out that the movie is a satirical look at the way that big business is in the 1980s. Now most people can see why someone would speak out about the way that the businesses were trying to just grow bigger and bigger. When it comes to satires in media, I see that there are two types:satires, like this one, that have a back meaning to the story that they are telling, and satires that deliberately poke fun of the subject that is being shown.
RoboCop is definitely the first type of satire. It uses its excellent action movie tricks to draw people in, then... POW satire. This type of satire has gone back far into history, from aincient Egypt and continues to today. Writers such as Jonathan Swift, John Dryden and Alexander Pope wrote satires in early England. Novels have been written by Orwell, Dickens, and many more, but my favorite would have to be Animal Farm. I believe I have mentioned this novel in the blog before, but it would have to be one of my favorite all time books, and definitely my favorite saterical work. It is one of the first political satires ever written. Orwell wrote it after the Spanish Civil War, and was pointed at critiquing Joseph Stalin. This book showed the horrors of the Stalinist regime. By sticking the story behind the story of animals on a farm overthrowing their owners, the message is out front, but not at first thought of. This is one of the best satires of all time.
The next group of satirical movie is one that comes out and makes fun of there subject right out. Such movies include the "Scary Movie" type of movies that are not cool by any means, but they get there point across by being as cheesy as they want to be. The point that they make is that [insert movie genre here] is getting to over the top, and they make no sense any more. Other movies/ TV shows such as Airplane, History of the World, part 1, and The Colbert Report use a direct satire, normally as comedy, but they get there point across. Sometimes there point is only comedy, but I think about one of my favorite cartoons of all time, Histeria!. The show uses satirical humor to allow people to learn history. Believe it or not, I have learned more history from this show than from most history teachers. Satire is a powerful tool in the right hands, and it can be cool.