Sunday, December 9, 2007

Precautionary measures

So. Reviewers, they avoid spoilers in their reviews, right? That's because if we're going to see the movie, or read the book, or whatever, we want to find things out for ourselves. Suspense and all that. The plot unfolding before our eyes. That's part of the fun.

But what if you what you need to know is: DON'T watch this movie! Not because it's bad, but because it's the kind of thing that, if you watch it, it's going to hit every single one of your triggers and you're going to need a week to recover, never mind what it's done to that nice date night you had planned.

What we need is a website where you can plug in the things you want to avoid--children dying young, planes crashing into mountains, lovers separated eternally, household cleaners run amok, banjo music, cockroaches. Clowns.

You enter your terms in the field and out comes a list of books and movies you know you need to give a pass. Brilliant, right? If you put it together, I want a footnote.

10 comments:

Julia said...

brilliant idea, that.
But now I need to know what movie, unfortunately, inspired it. We were interested in seeing The Golden Compass, but didn't swing it yesterday. It's not that, is it? And I may still see Gone, baby gone despite it being something that will clearly push buttons. I am just a sucker for those Afflecks, you know?

S. said...

Julia, it was Atonement. And I think that the things it triggered for us are not triggers for you, at least not so far as I know, so you'd be okay with it. No dead babies or children dying young, anyway.

Based on having read the books, I think you'd be okay with The Golden Compass, esp. after talking to my staffer who saw it Friday and said they left out what is probably the most disturbing scene.

Magpie said...

Was it any good - or no because it pushed all your buttons? I haven't seen it (and no plans to), but the book is waiting on my bedside table, just coincidentally.

S. said...

Magpie, it *was* good. More's the pity. Because it triggered us just that much more effectively, you know? Also, A. says that if it had been bad we might have got up and left. Maybe.

jo(e) said...

That's a brilliant idea.

niobe said...

Now, I have to go read Atonement. I would see the movie, except, really, I don't do movies.

Sorry about the triggers.

kathy a. said...

that is a great idea! i don't see many movies. my triggers are varied: can't do vertigo, gun violence, etc.

elswhere said...

Oh, this is brilliant. As it is, I have to pre-read things for RW to make sure nothing Bad happens to any children.

Me, I'm mostly okay with things in books. But I really really don't like seeing people stick needles into their arms. Which I found out about 5 minutes into "Trainspotting."

Co said...

I don't think such a site would really be useful to me. If something really "triggers" me, I stop reading the book or leave the theater or sit through it hoping it will be cathartic and then never, ever read/watch it again. There is certainly evidence that relieving one's traumas is not productive for many people. I am thinking in particular of the graphic suicide scene in Monsters Ball (forgive me for that spoiler). Having witnessed an actual suicide at age 13, I really don't ever want to see that movie again.

But, and I can only speak for myself here, I don't feel the need to be too self-protective. I wouldn't be inclined to use the website you describe. I figure, life itself (let alone fiction) will confront me with additional traumas. Maybe having to face them occasionally and unexpectedly in books/films will actually make it easier to face the ones that will sadly and inevitably come up in my real life, too. Anyway, that's the way I look at it. Hope it's okay that I am offering a different viewpoint.

liz said...

Brilliant!!!