in about 100 words or less
In my previous Silent Film Musing, I noted early cinema’s preoccupation with education. On the same theme, Rev. W. H. Jackson penned an article entitled: “The Omnipresent Revolver” in The Moving Picture World (1915:51) suggesting that some movies are a bad influence on society. He noted that a young man from New York was “recently arrested for holding up at least five different tradesmen and after robbing their cash boxes”, boasting that he “learned the secret of gun fighting by studying the tactics of the moving picture gun fighters.” Jackson concluded that this is “without doubt a piece of effective educational moving picture work which was never intended.” I wonder what Reverend Jackson would have to say about the current problem of gun violence and our modern “educational films” such as Scarface (1983), Heat (1995), The Matrix (1999), and Kick-Ass (2010)? (Klaus Ming January 2016).