Letters to the Editor

Movie choice

July 28, 2012


To the editor:

I was just pulling out of Topeka Library’s parking lot when news of the Aurora, Colo., shootings began broadcasting on NPR. It was one of those moments, like Kennedy’s assassination and the attacks on the twin towers in New York, that in its unimaginable terribleness, stops time, indelibly marking the place we were when it occurred forever in our memories.

A later NPR report indicated that, despite the shooting, “The Dark Knight Rises” had been the No. 1 box office draw last weekend. This film should be immediately pulled by the production company. There is already more than enough violence in the real world. Why do people need these terrible films, with their sinister, sadistic plots and characters? Heath Ledger’s early death from drug overdose, as well as James Holmes’ shooting spree cannot be separated from the nightmare effect that these dark films have on the sensitive minds of their actors and viewers.

Please, out of respect for those whose lives were lost, do not patronize theaters that are showing this movie. It’s time to stand up for decency and integrity in our entertainment venues. It’s time to stop production companies from making films like “The Dark Knight” by refusing to go see them. Since it seems that the money is the driving force behind any movie, those that have no audience will soon be taken off the market.

Think hard before you step out the door to your next movie. Ask yourself why you want to see it. If you are simply seeking “entertainment,” try the classics. There are better films than “The Dark Knight.”


acg 1 year, 8 months ago

Violence isn't new. What is new to the past ten years is how bombarded we are with "information". Between our phones and our computers, we know way more about what's happening around the world instantly! And so do our kids. I can remember a few of the instances mentioned above happening when I was young but not clearly. I didn't sit down to watch the news at night, I didn't have a phone that alerted me to stuff, I didn't have a twitter account or instant access to videos of people acting like idiots. Our kids do. They emulate our behavior because that's what kids are all about. If we think we're raising a whole generation of lazy, whiny, violent weenies, we only have ourselves to thank. BTW, my kids don't have phones, or facebook or twitter accounts. They still ride their bikes and play outside. Crazy, eh?


asixbury 1 year, 8 months ago

Violence is prevalent. Maybe seeing it on TV and movies prevents some from doing it in real life. They get to experience their fantasies through video games and their imaginations, instead of actually doing these acts. I grew up with violence all around and never once thought to do something violent. Most people know the difference between reality and fantasy. If you don't like the violence, don't watch it, but don't try to prevent other people from enjoying the movies. Now this country's hang-up with nudity is a whole different issue.

Connecting this movie with the act of some crazy guy is ridiculous. If he is set on violence, he will seek it out, whether or not Batman played. That's like they used to say in the 90's about how Marilyn Manson caused the Columbine massacre: ridiculous connections and completely absurd.


jaywalker 1 year, 8 months ago

"Why do people need these terrible films, with their sinister, sadistic plots and characters? Heath Ledger’s early death from drug overdose, as well as James Holmes’ shooting spree cannot be separated from the nightmare effect that these dark films have on the sensitive minds of their actors and viewers."

Please forgive me, the LTE annoyed me so much I haven't bothered to read any response as yet.

Get a freakin' grip! It's called life, shiitake mushrooms happen. So if some nutball chose to shoot up "It's a Wonderful Life", let's burn some books? And trying to tie in Ledger's overdose in any fashion is just plain silly.

Welcome to 2012, Marilyn. Personally, I'd appreciate if you opened your mind a touch before you wrote another LTE.


BucklesRouge 1 year, 8 months ago

Yes, let's ban a movie that's trying to make viewers think about society (violence and all). It's people like the woman who wrote this letter that is the problem with America!


Flap Doodle 1 year, 8 months ago

Maybe Spielberg could buy up all movies and digitally replace all the guns with flowers....


classclown 1 year, 8 months ago

Apparently I've been out of touch with reality. I hear about this movie being the third in a trilogy and I accept that. But what in the heck is the second movie and when did it come out? I can only remember the first.


jafs 1 year, 8 months ago

I did at first skip over the part suggesting banning it, but apparently many others skipped the parts suggesting that people make different choices, and stop going to these sorts of movies.

It's very worthwhile, in my opinion, to be aware of the effects of one's choices on one's mind, body and spirit, and choose activities that have a positive effect on those.

We've stopped going to these kinds of movies for a while now, and limiting our exposure to violence on tv as well - there's some interesting research showing that our systems (mind/body) can't distinguish between reality and fantasy on a certain level, and so we're affected almost as if we're living the movie.

I remember a friend of mine who liked to play "Mortal Combat" - doing so clearly increased his aggression.


ivalueamerica 1 year, 8 months ago

Clearly, based on this persons arguments, we should all choose not to read the Bible.


hedshrinker 1 year, 8 months ago

Ms. Roy's opinions may be debatable, but spare me yr outrage(FredMertz, etc) at her citing the public library and NPR as examples of her intellectual elitist perspective. I believe there's all kinds of sanctimonious posturing, much of it by folks who want to show their populist/gritty attitudes by" getting down with the folks" and making fun of people with some education. That's sort of like Mitt Romney trying to show how he's just one of the guys. I don't pay to support most of the big budget drivel that graces the Southwind screen, but don't want to prevent others fr doing so . I certainly do encourage others to spend their entertainment $$$ and especially time doing something that might be more uplifting, in that it might make one think or laugh (with, not at) or feel hopeful about humanity or point us in a positive direction. I don't find fear and violence and noise entertaining at all .


beatrice 1 year, 8 months ago

The Bible is pretty violent. Better not read it. Might make me want to nail somebody to a cross.

Somebody once went gun crazy at a Luby's -- better not eat at restaurants. Another went gun nuts at an amish school -- better not attend schools (or buy amish goods). Another went coocoo for cocoa puffs while armed at a military base -- better not support the military. And don't even get me started on mailing a letter at the post office.

Regarding the overdose of an actor, Elvis also died of an overdose -- must have been the Westerns he was in.

Or maybe the theater was just the setting and the movie could just as easily have been a G-rated family pic. Remember, the shooter had not even seen the film yet. Blaming the film is like blaming the play for Lincoln's assassination.

No, I won't avoid theaters showing this film. I completely enjoyed the first two Batman movies in this latest triology and look forward to seeing this latest film in a theater setting.


Agnostick 1 year, 8 months ago

I'm sorry, but the letter is correct. Right on, Ms. Roy! We need better movies. Movies that teach us about important things, like God, and how Jesus died for our sins.


Phil Minkin 1 year, 8 months ago

Brilliant ! Focus on a movie that MAY have some vague. tangential connection with 2 deaths rather than doing something about the easy availability of assault rifles and acquiring 6000 rounds of ammunition (easier to get than getting a package of Sudefed at a drug store) that are responsible for 100's of deaths. Next we can stop NASCAR races to cut down of traffic fatalities.


Leslie Swearingen 1 year, 8 months ago

I saw the movie and throughly enjoyed every moment of it. I will also buy it when it comes out on DVD. There is no valid reason for this movie to be pulled. Respect for those who were killed? No, because this is a business and a public space. What happened does not make it hallowed ground.


chootspa 1 year, 8 months ago

I think the production company should pull all movies by Jodie Foster, since Hinckley shot Reagan to impress her.


Jaded_one 1 year, 8 months ago

Let's ban the movies but not the assault weapons yeah that's the ticket...we will always have violent movies, video games, cartoons, TV shows, government etc. welcome to a free society. I love this Country to death but it is what it is...


Roland Gunslinger 1 year, 8 months ago

Movies cause violence and makes it acceptable by our youth?

Please tell me what movies they were watching during the Crusades.

Please tell me what movies caused the death of 30,000 people in Paris in 1572 (St. Bartholomew’s Day Massacre)

Massacre of Thessalonica (7000 dead)?

The Civil War?

The Lushan Rebellion (36,000,000 dead)?

Taiping Rebellion (up to 100,000,000 dead)?

Face it- humans, by our very nature, are violent creatures. Stop blaming entertainment (movies, books, videogames, music) for things that have been occurring from the very beginning of mankind.


Abdu Omar 1 year, 8 months ago

For once I agree with JAFS. Violence on tv and movies and other places is getting out of hand and is instilling in some children the idea that violence is acceptable. I am very much a classicist in that I like classical music and the like, but certainly we can find a much more enlightened form of entertainment than violence and murder. Can't we?


Liberty_One 1 year, 8 months ago

It's funny that I'm reading this LTE before going to see it today.


geekin_topekan 1 year, 8 months ago

I wonder if "Deliverance" is included in Marilyn's mental list of acceptable movies. It's funny, I have seen "Deliverance" a hundred times and have never once considered going to the Kaw in search of campers to sodomize. "Saturday Night Fever" did not make me want to wear platforms or join a ministry. "Taxi Driver" did not make me want to shoot a politician or impress Jodie Foster.

However, "All the President's Men" did spur my interest in Journalism;"The Cabbie" did make me want to drive a taxi; "...and Justice For All" did spark an interest in law school.

I am sorry about the quotation marks, I have no idea how to italicize or underline.

Carry on.


Brock Masters 1 year, 8 months ago

Talk about wanting to take us back into the dark ages. Let's burn the books and the movies. The people must be protected from themselves.


dogbait 1 year, 8 months ago

Like the remake of the classic "Psycho"?


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