Review: ‘V for Vendetta’ is incendiary entertainment

Review: ‘V for Vendetta’ is incendiary entertainment
- By Tony Robinson
KATU Movie Critic

“V for Vendetta” is a comic book movie, but I don’t want to stigmatize this film by calling it such. It goes way beyond what anyone might think a film based on a comic book would be.

In fact, depending on your point of view, this might be the most important film ever adapted from the funny books.

Set in the near future, the story takes place in an England that is ruled by a fascist dictatorship. Civil liberties, ethnic diversity and sexual diversity no longer exist.

A young woman named Evey (Natalie Portman) is out late at night after curfew when she runs afoul of a group of brown-shirt styled police thugs who attempt to rape her.

Evey is rescued by a mysterious mask-wearing man named "V" played by Hugo Weaving.

Evey soons finds out that V is much more than her rescuer. He is a revolutionary who has launched a campaign to bring down England’s oppressive governing regime.

In addition, V also has a secret and personal vendetta against a select group of individuals. Evey faces an important decision. Is her new acquaintance a liberator or a terrorist.

The comic this movie is based upon was written in the early 1980’s by comic book legend Alan Moore.

It was a reaction to the conservative British administration headed by then Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. The story was very British but the filmmakers have updated this story for the post 9/11 world.

Adapted for the screen by the Wachowski Brothers, who authored the Matrix trilogy, this film is incendiary.

The ideas presented in this film are very contemporary for the world we live in. The story touches on fascism, racism, sexual discrimination, religious intolerance, privacy, personal freedom and the price people will pay for protection from the outside world.

This film will be offensive to some as it takes shots at the Iraq War and at conservative television personalities types such as Bill O’Reilly.

Some will find it very offensive. Others will herald it. I personally think people will be talking about this movie. They’ll talk about it; they’ll debate about it and may even argue over it.

It presents ideas and discusses topics about our war on terror, and that is not always the most popular topic for people to think about.

As far is V is concerned, what is he? Is he a terrorist, using bombs and guerrilla tactics to bring down a government? Or is he a revolutionary who uses bombs and guerrilla tactics to liberate the people from an oppressive regime?

In today’s day and age, it’s all about point of view. One person’s criminal is another’s martyr.

“V for Vendetta” forces the viewer to think about this dichotomy and decide for oneself. I think that this is the perfect blend of entertainment and social commentary.

You will definitely get your money’s worth and be entertained for two hours, but I think you’ll also have something to take home with you.

This is a film that will stay with you and give you something to ponder. That’s what a good movie does and I can’t wait to see it again.

“V for Vendetta”
Rated R