June 13, 2015

Nightcrawlers is a more dramatic rendition of Anchorman 2. The latter’s unanticipated profound brilliance in satirizing the remediation of news, a product that is presented to convey truth about the world the audience viewer inhabits, is nothing more than another occupation in mindful distractions away from that same world, which is never always hospitable to the subject which inhabits it. Nightcrawlers presents an honest portrayal of the production of culture then, centered around not sufficiently the chase for profits, but the reason the profit motivation leers towards shock and awe over meditations more serious than sensual.


We must say then that it only reveals a failure in the education of the average person. For presumptively, a proper education will find the crashes and burns and blood each news segment is craving to deliver to its local audience – as truly the only undifferentiated product local broadcasting has in the entertainment marketplace – uninspiring and indeed distortionary to how the world normally is. This genuine waste of energy, as it displaces the mental efforts of the viewer away from more contemplative, enriching, aggrandizing, must be the result not of a brute fact that the average person has such a low threshold for tolerating distractions as a consequence of a lower cognition, but the failure of the culture to inculcate a higher producing mind, i.e. an intellectual one. We can’t fault children for being starstruck by such theatrics; what is disturbing is when the majority of adults are arrested in their development toward wanting such sensationalism.


In any event, we have Lou who incidentally finds himself a perfect machine part in the sausage factory of a less polished reality tv. By the end of the film, we are left with no doubt that he is a sociopath. And terrifically, the film does not allow us to sympathize with him at all. We find him as a thief in the beginning of the film and a murderer as it ends. The role of being a documentarian of human catastrophe fits him suitably, as he is fearless in breaking rules and unfazed about embellishing reality to create a better story. Even more, he doesn’t mind physically hurting the competition. Why? Because he seeks to become more powerful. To rise the ranks as it were. And this, being the first on the spot at the scene of a car accident, for some reason is his only opportunity to do so.


Power is a curious thing. He discards humans like fast food wrappers all to gain in prominence within society. Yet Nightcrawlers does not reveal to us any sort of social anxiety, any resentment at the world. That is to say, we don’t feel his satisfaction in being recognized at the news studio, nor in his production company’s name being labeled on the latest news reel he delivers. This is to be expected with a sociopath, who doesn’t feel the world owes him anything, and that his sole concern in life is towards self-gain.


The film will easily be misconstrued as being anti-market, with proud hands jutting an indictment toward the character as a result of what the market creates. Truthfully, however, his sociopathic tendencies will inevitably lead him to self-ruin, judging by how reckless he is with the law. But regardless, what is not seen is how typically a sociopath can achieve self-worth and prominence in a society non-violently, meaning, through the conduct of commerce as opposed to violent force and theft. The unintelligent ones may be found in federal penitentiaries. All to say, the fact capitalism organizes a society toward allowing such a human to contribute ought to make anyone its staunch advocate. Such a market opportunity would be nonexistent anywhere else.



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