Instant Perfection? Reality is Neither! Part 1

Movies have spoiled us in a weird way. (I like a lot of movies, and there are some extremely talented people involved in making movies, but that’s not the point!) Maybe it’s action or romance. The action hero adroitly executes whatever moves he needs to and usually manages to say the right thing to the girl, too. The romance guy certainly thinks of all the right things and does them smoothly and saves the day if required. It’s not the unreality of the scenarios or the bankruptcy of defining one’s moral codes by fiction, though, that I’m thinking of. Instead, it’s the instant perfection of it all.

Does the action hero need to master a martial art? Two minute training montage. Knock out (or blast to red mist) six bad guys/monsters in three seconds? Pow! Whap! Blam! It’s done, flawlessly. Jump from the helicopter to the moving train? You get the idea.

I know that the movie is make-believe and fiction. There’s a vast crew of people who work to create that illusion. There are dozens of specialists to concentrate on all the appearance: lights, costume, make-up, hair, props, sets, etc. There’s a person in charge of the action, and stunt doubles to do the parts that are hard to even pretend. Someone else wrote down what to say, and they even let the actor study and rehearse as much as he wants. Yet, caught up in the illusion, I forget all that and just see the final product.

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