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July 17, 2006 | by  | in Opinion |
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Beware of Hippies

The story was really quite amazing. A small creature made its way out of its oppressor’s prison in a daring bid for freedom. Unless you have been living under a rock you will know the animal I am talking about. Jin the otter is an inspiration to animals, and even humans, everywhere. The fact is we need more heroes like her on television.

For weeks Jin was on the run after escaping from Auckland Zoo through a small hole in her enclosure. Her escape was nothing short of a miracle, and is indeed an example of animals’ ability to sometimes trump man. The more pressing question is why she decided to escape. The reasons why Jin decided to flee have varied from news report to news report, but these were all pretty boring.

Perhaps Jin, influenced by talk about the exciting new show on television, Prison Break decided that dead fish and noisy children were no longer enough to satisfy her natural urges. Perhaps the otter lovin’ she was receiving at the Zoo was below par. Or maybe something more sinister is afoot, and Jin was the guinea pig. Could a revolution be on the horizon?

A recent repeat of a ‘Treehouse of Horrors’ episode of The Simpsons showed the ramifications of a revolt by murderous dolphins. Now, I am not so far removed from reality that I believe something in a cartoon can be true. But what if, is always a great question to ask.

What if more Zoo animals escaped? What if they, with years of pent up frustration and anger at being ogled by hordes of tourists, first daters and primary school children, they decided to educate the wild animals of the world to hate man also? I put it to you that we would be screwed.

Imagine if all the possums, sheep, dogs and cats in New Zealand suddenly decided to fuck us up? They breed a whole lot faster than us, there are already more of them to start with, and their limited brain would ensure Kamikaze-style attacks would render even our most deadly weapons useless. That’s a pretty scary picture, especially if the birds go all Hitchcock and started dive bombing and pecking at our softest extremities. But the really scary outcome would be who the animals would potentially spare…the hippies.

All those dirty vegetarians with their ‘I’m too cool to eat meat’ mantras would be looked on favourably by the animal revolution leaders (Monkeys and Dolphins) and would be spared. Can you imagine a world where only hippies survived?

If that’s the case, give me more steak, because I would rather have my arms slowly nibbled down to nubs by ravenous mice than live in a world where the majority of people are hippies.

To any hippies reading this, I am sorry. I am sorry that you are a dirty hippie.

I started this week’s column with the intention of talking about Jin, and being a little cute. You know, writing one of those feel good pieces where the real story is the otter hero within us all. That would have been nice, but somehow it turned into a rant about hippies…which I think carries just as an important message. Beware, hippies are everywhere…

Any hippies or anyone else who would like to complain can contact me at Ravenous_Ryan@hotmail.com

DVD Review

Gobshite (2003)

I really wanted to review Beetlejuice this week – but all the video stores I went to had either sold their only copies or lost them years ago. Watch this space: I will hunt it down if it kills me. So instead I raided the special interest section at Video Ezy and found this little gem.

Gobshite is perhaps one of the more violent and sadistic films I have ever seen. At first the in-your-face, over the top violence, along with the constant interruptions by FILM 101 pretentious camera angles and styles made Gobshite seem like it was trying to be something it wasn’t – good. But as the story progressed and the director calmed down a bit, Gobshite came into its own.

The movie revolves around the London underground crime scene and its rather colourful characters. At almost every turn someone is being smashed in the face, having something yanked from their body, or being tortured in some manner. In one scene five men are tied to chairs in an old Warehouse with devilish forms of torture, each more sadistic than the last, being doled out. The crime-boss ordering the torture exemplifies the sort of dark comedy the director is playing with when he quips “it’s time to vote off the weakest link” while ordering a mans leg to be cut off by a circular saw.

The story lines within the movie are rather complicated, and there is always something going on – sometimes to the detriment of the movie as a whole. I think Gobshite could have benefited from a bit of simplification or an extension on the 88 minute running time to deal with a few plot holes.

Gobshite is great fun. The fact that it is an independently funded with a do-it-yourself production ensures the gangster genre can be taken to its most violent limits.

Gobshite has won awards, so it has some film-cred appeal. But if you hate violent films, do not watch. That being said, if you deplore violent movies, but have a liking for gingers this film is a must see. I do not think I have seen more gingers in one film.

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