Bowling for Columbine Essay

2345 Words Mar 4th, 2011 10 Pages
General Bowling for Columbine Notes


The Academy Award winning documentary film “Bowling for Columbine” by Director Michael Moore attempts to find a reason for the Columbine High School, Colorado shootings and leads to an investigation into gun laws and gun violence. Through a series of interviews, stunts, cartoons, commentary and media pieces, we are left at the end of a blunt and revealing journey wanting the answers to the various moral and ethical questions raised. Moore travels across America and Canada to get a broad pool of opinion and not only takes the trip to find a reason for the gun violence in the first place, but he takes the long road by not blaming the usual suspects (video games, angry music, and a bloody
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The use of the cartoon “A Brief History of The United States of America” is very effective in conveying the truth that America (particularly white America) is, and always has been, a society run by terror. It is first and foremost a parody of other similar cartoon style educational videos, and it satirises this format to present the truth. It tells a very simple and fast-paced story, giving the details of all the horrific things in American history since the arrival of the Mayflower. Some of the things it lists are; killing the “savages” (Native American Indians) because they were “scared” of their unfamiliarity, killing each other as witches because the were “scared”, possession of African slaves for 200 years for monetary gains and the coincidental formation of both the Ku Klux Klan and the National Rifle Association in 1871. A personified bullet does the narration of the story. This is a bitter irony in that it represents all the awful things in American history that the cartoon is set to inform us about. The last image of this cartoon is of a happy family. As the narrating bullet concludes “…and they all lived happily ever after.” each family member, including a baby and the pet dog, pulls out a gun and smiles widely. This black humour is a sick and emotive endnote that epitomises the extent of the American belief to take that law allowing one to own “arms”, literally. This cartoon is blunt, brutal and shockingly funny, as humour is consistent

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