The same with comedy. We loved Red Skelton. Today's comedians use
vulgarity because they lack talent and skill.
My father with his 4th grade education, who became a lumberjack as a teen
(CCC's) and served in WWII didn't swear. He told me swearing was the
last resort of a weak mind.Personally I think swearing only has a
place if there is a need for shock and awe. That only works if it is very seldom
used. What swearing often does is tell everyone in hearing range your education,
cultural and moral level. After three decades of managing people I still
haven't found a reason to swear, although I did raise my voice towards one
employee, once. I also haven't worked at a company where it is tolerated,
although I know some companies still allow it.
Chris:Having written more than twenty screenplays, winning and
placing at more than fifty film festivals and contests, including a few
Christian film festivals, I have mixed feelings about this topic. I think the
use of profanity is entirely contingent on the subject matter. Though I will
agree, unimaginative scriptwriters rely too heavily of gratuitous profanity.
And, you're correct; profanity has been particularly abused by free cable
channels like FX. I was a bit shocked, with how cavalier they have become with
the F-word. However, in crafting adult material, such as a biopic screenplay I
wrote about maverick writer Charles Bukowski, the material sometimes calls for
rough language. My advice to other writers is that they strongly consider their
audience and judiciously use foul language.
Brave Sir Robin: I beg to differ. You have utterly failed to draw any
connection between lazy script writing, foul language, and shallow faux
'reality' and real emotions, real people, and social problems
reflected in this so-called 'reality' spread across the land in the
form of stupid, unfulfilling, self absorbed, self loathing movies! Hollywood
entertainment is avoidance of thinking to the max. Many of those attending
can't read or write, but they can sure avoid 'life' in all of its
forms by attending the 'reality' presented.
The U.S. Supreme Court Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons with regards to the
Copyright Act, that once you have bought something, you own it, and you can
resell it. This means that if you buy a book and your underline passages or tear
pages out or black out words you do not like, you can still legally sell it.Moreover, in 2005 congress passed the Family Movie Act which
specifically protects the choice to filter movies (after Hollywood had sued
every filtering company out of business). Now they are trying to do the same
thing again. They will lose at the Supreme Court however.
I agree, it's lazy writing, and it happens in modern books as well as
movies. I've read some life-impacting classic books where emotions are
strongly conveyed through skillful writing. Book and script-writers now rarely
seem to have to skill or imagination to convey emotion except through profanity.
What a shame.
@Light and LibertyEverything you said is all well and good, but
you've totally gone off subject. The discussion was about whether bad
language means the screenwriter is lazy, and you went off about morality, sin,
and protecting the children.All of those things are great points and
a worthy discussion (for a different article), but completely unrelated to the
matter at hand.
People here are hypocrites when they justify 'foul language" in a movie
and talk about how important it is to show 'reality', as if Hollywood
shows 'reality'. Does Hollywood ever show the reality of the
consequences of having an abortion? violence? An affair? drug use? Illicit
sex? Consequences of sin? Hardly, if at all! So, if they all are for showing
'reality', how come they only want certain types of
'reality'? Hollywood is entertainment, pure and simple. If
Hollywood can't figure out how to entertain without showing
'reality', what is its use? Oh, I know. Corrupt and desensitize
people, kids, etc. from the 'realities' of life. When I go to a
movie, I want to be entertained or find some meaning in a movie, not thrown
overboard with fruitless, meaningless, ugly, stupid, foolish depictions of stuff
that I don't care to hear or know about. You can show all of the above
mentioned life issues without offending my spirit. So, until people say
'no' to all the garbage by making better choices (Oh, maybe visiting
the widow would work!), then other options are readily and happily available.
I love all the streaming content. There is so much more variety now.Let's face it people from different areas, social circles, sub-cultures,
etc.. use language in many different ways. No sense being too prudish about
it.I can't wait to take my kids to see Guardians of the Galaxy
II. We watch a good number a PG-13 movies together, and my kids don't go
around swearing. My son did once at school about 4 years ago, we had a good
talk, and it never happened again.My guess is that my wife and I
have more influence over our kids than mass media. Perhaps people should spend
more time with their kids and worry less about the art and craft of
"They're just words, in the end. You empower them to be what they
become."I completely agree, which, for the life of me, is why I
can't figure out why I don't hear the word "energetic" more
often when a character wants to convey a vulgarity. Or "yearling" or
"dainty" or "stamp" or "robust" or "tire" or
No. Certainly not always. I didn't watch 'Sopranos', for
example, for a cleaned up version of the life of people in the mob. They use
what we call foul language. A lot of people do. They're just words,
in the end. You empower them to be what they become.
"Foul language is just lazy screenwriting."Eh, possibly, but
not always.For example, if I were making a movie about inner city
street gangs, would I include foul language? Yes. And if I did, would that be
lazy screenwriting? No. Because I'm trying to capture the way inner city
gang members actually talk, and that does include bad language.
@harrison bergeron"What makes it worse is that anyone who tries to
clean up these movies is sued out of business."Not true at all.
If you bought the movie and modified it for your own use, the studios
wouldn't give you a second glance.However, if you modify a
movie you didn't create, that you hold no rights to, then you remove the
parts you find offensive, then try to profit by reselling that modified movie,
the copyright holders will rightfully prevent you from doing so.
Wasn't funny or clever in Guardians 2Just gratuitous
grossness for no reason.Half agree with Chris Hicks-- it IS
lazy.Also a natural byproduct of the crass gutter minds of some of
Ya, swears and nudity are naughty and we lose the special feelings when we hear
them and see them
What makes it worse is that anyone who tries to clean up these movies is sued
out of business.