Posts Tagged ‘addiction’

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SMOKING POT LEADS STRAIGHT TO THE WHOREHOUSE IN ‘SEDUCTION OF THE INNOCENT,’ 1960

Can this happen?

Yeah. Some dumbasses can get themselves hooked on heroin. Some genes are more prone to addiction too. If you’re extremely addictive in nature be extra careful.

Is marijuana some crucial link and “gateway drug” in this alleged chain?

No. Of course not. We’ve seen plenty since this 1960s propaganda offensive.

Don’t do heroin. Don’t do meth. Learn about these substances, what they do, and why they hurt you.

Don’t tell lies either. Or your credibility will evaporate.

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The second I saw the poster I knew I was seeing this film.  I think of the 1990s as the golden age of indie cinema, underrated and perhaps in need of revisiting.  Many geeks overrate the 1970s, chock full of nostalgia.  But most 70’s films don’t hold up at all, unless you’re into bell bottoms and corporate funk.

High Art is one of the first serious lesbian dramas to get some distribution in theaters.  It’s a fascinating character centered story about some New York artists and publishers, and I just couldn’t look away.  Ally Sheedy returns as an aging, retired photographer who is now addicted to heroin and floundering away.  The younger Radha Mitchell discovers her living in her building, and tries to convince Sheedy to come and take photographs for the magazine she works for.

As Syd (Mitchell) is drawn into Lucy’s world (Sheedy), her own life is set in relief.  Living a boring lower level TV yuppie life with her boyfriend seems cold and un-engaging compared to the twisted life that Lucy has lived.

The two are thrust together to work on a series of photos for the next issue.  Of course Syd is eventually seduced, leading to the film’s climax, a series of provocative photographs of the two in bed, photos never meant to released.

 

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Reviewing Flight (2012) has compelled me to think back and acknowledge where some real self-destruction and cinematic genius had coalesced. Sid and Nancy is as good a place to start as any.

Based on the real life of Sid Vicious, the bass player of The Sex Pistols, we see how raw and unhinged addiction, the music industry and love can all be.  Throw them together and it’s a ride you won’t soon forget (unlike Denzel’s public service announcement for AA).

Roger Ebert was a big booster for the film:

“[Sid] was handed great fame and a certain amount of power and money, and indirectly told that his success depended on staying fucked up. This is a big assignment for a kid who would otherwise be unemployable. Vicious did his best, fighting and vomiting and kicking his way through his brief days and long nights, until [Nancy] Spungen brought him a measure of relief.”

It’s a fascinating descent into complete shyte.  These two, playing off of one another, expose the senselessness of their reckless ideology, its self-destructive mandate.  On a spiraling death plummet, but not without an original stain on the pavement, Sid and Nancy live forever in infamy.

 Trailer From Hell: Sid and Nancy

Other selections in the sub-genre include Johnny Depp’s Blow, a fantastic modern history of the drug trade and one of his most underrated films.  The allure of prohibition is more than just substance addiction.  Drugs have been a thorn in the side of society for so long, and their outlawing provides for a significant underground economy, including the predictable wars and mayhem associated with avoiding capture and prosecution, the creation of warlords and the casualties produced with increasing territory and profit margins.  People get caught up over their heads in so many ways.  Blow is also based on a true story, and Depp’s range is on display here.  Speaking of Depp, what’s a more mind-bending drug fueled descent into madness than Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas?

While Blow tackles cocaine, the larger problem today is arguably crystal-meth.  Spun is a twisted indie take on that menace, and also underrated / unknown.  Powerful performances, powerful situations, and the filmmaking is sharp as a shiny new hypodermic.  Spun is an experience, a trip to take, much like Requiem For a Dream.  There are just so many great drug addled explorations once that Pandora’s Box is pried open.

Yet another addiction drama with a twist is Rush, with Jason Patric and Jennifer Jason Leigh.  Undercover narcotics officers get hooked on their own contraband.  The lines between law and outlaw are blurry indeed.  Denzel’s previous drug film Training Day also explored that territory.

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Clicking on the Sid and Nancy imdb page instantly prompted me with Oliver Stone’s The Doors, which is another groundbreaking intense exploration of addiction and self-destruction – and pretty much true, and significant.

Others in this genre include Less Than Zero, with Robert Downey Jr. and Bright Lights, Big City with Michael J. Fox.  I’ve given a nod to The Wackness with Ben Kingsley, and even Charlie Bartlett (Downey again) had more complex characterization than Flight.

Perhaps the crème of them all is Phillip K. Dick’s A Scanner Darkly.  Mind bending exploration of addiction, prohibition and the images are presented like no other film you would have seen (except perhaps Waking Life).


If you watch all these films, you will instantly see why Flight comes up so banal and inconsequential by comparison.  It’s relegated itself to the cheap, disposable dustbin of obviousness and even preachiness.  Flight is far too simplistic and simple-minded to bother talking about any further.

Full film online now, narrated by Morgan Freeman.

Breaking the Taboo: Ending the UN’s War on Drugs (58m)

“If you can’t control drug use in a maximum security prison, how can you control drug use in a free society?”

Listen up, screwheads. I know this blog is being monitored by some people not here of their own personal curiosity.

PORTUGAL legalizes all drugs. They treat anyone arrested with drugs as an opportunity to help that person. They offer treatment to addicted persons. RESULT: Drug use declines across every single category.

Further evidence for provincial American authoritarians who don’t even know where Portugal is.

During the early-to-mid-1990s, the Clinton administration ordered and funded a major cocaine policy study, again by RAND. The Rand Drug Policy Research Center study concluded that $3 billion should be switched from federal and local law enforcement to treatment. The report said that treatment is the cheapest way to cut drug use, stating that drug treatment is twenty-three times more effective than the supply-side “war on drugs”.–Wikipedia

This was, of course, ignored. But is, of course, empirically true and proven in Portugal and other nations. Outlawing the personal use of mind-altering substances also VIOLATES THE US CONSTITUTION, AMENDMENT 9:

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.