I don’t write film reviews or blog about them often, but I felt that I had to comment on the film Chronicle after viewing it today. I think it was very well done and is not what I expected whatsoever. I thought Chronicle was one of those teen Disney-like films. It was only after the buzz from people I follow on Twitter that I decided to go to Metacritic and saw it had received decent ratings.
Chronicle really hit home for me on a few points. It highlights the cruelty of our society as it pertains to bullying and domestic abuse. It gives the victim in the story the power to lash out, which he does to tragic ends. I found myself entirely empathetic with this character as he faced an abusive father, a dying mother and bullying in high school and elsewhere.
It takes special powers to make Andrew attractive to women. It takes having special powers for him to even have friends to begin with. Once this fact is known to Andrew it only antagonizes him more. I felt catharsis tinged with a little guilt watching our un-hero strike back at his father and the roughnecks who had wronged him.
I am someone who was the victim of adolescent and teenage bullying, so I hope you can understand my relation to the story portrayed in Chronicle. As a kid of Indian descent in a majority African-American and Hispanic area of the Bronx (a borough I often refuse to admit I’m from); I faced bullying on the account of my ethnicity. I was also bullied for my appearance which wasn’t limited to one race doling out the punishment. The difference between the fictional character Andrew and myself was the fact that I lived in a good home with loving parents. I did loose my father at the age of fourteen however.
Since the tragedies of Columbine and numerous other school shootings, bullying is now a subject which is given more credence by school administrators. That is a positive occurrence. While we don’t condone shootings or even the violence meted out by a character in a ficitonal movie; we can learn more about bullying and how to stop it.
As a result of the bullying I faced I am somewhat of a tortured soul you could say. I don’t put much worth into my appearance and I only truly value my intelligence and the capabilities pertaining to that. I am probably also a bit of a self-loather; a term brought more fully to my attention by the comedian Janeane Garofalo.
I often say I wouldn’t wish life on anyone and I still believe that. Human nature has left a lot to be desired, though it tries to change for the better. It still has a long way to go and we are an evolving species.