On my way to London (and just before) I watched two rather striking movies. Well, they weren’t particularly striking, but they had something that sparked my interest. Nigerians.
Both District 9 and X-Men Origins: Wolverine have rather negative depictions of Nigerians. The former makes them arms, flesh and drug dealers in the alien district in South Africa and the latter turns them into the initial, random group of ‘baddies’ that Wolverine’s team faces off against and in the process display their mutant abilities. Both show Nigerians as black market dealers, as against the main law, as bad guys, but also interesting, as sub bad guys. In both movies they are not the main adversary, they’re represented as the fly that gets in the way, but not the bad bads (who are, in both movies, governmental agencies and the good guys are the rebels).
The second is something that has annoyed me for a long time, but was brought out in different way on the plane. Americans leave the movie early. By early, I mean before the credits finish rolling. This is not true of all Americans, I’m told, as Los Angelinos stay to the end to see their fellows. However, it’s quite different from Japanese where the movie does not end until the lights rise at the end of the credits and people do not leave until that point.
This observation has a few minor asides:
a) certain movies use gag clips or extra info during the credits to keep people in the audience (one such is Austin Powers), but the question then is whether people pay a whit of attention to the names as they are paying attention to the continued movie.
b) what about the difference between movies with the information at the beginning and the information at the end?
But the plane brought out something even stranger. X-Men Origin: Wolverine’s credits were fast forwarded through. The credit roll went up fast and it was unreadable, but it did go. Why? Is that adding insult to injury, just satisfying legal obligations? Or is it something else?