Eleanor Roosevelt High School's Student-Run Newspaper

The Raider Review

Eleanor Roosevelt High School's Student-Run Newspaper

The Raider Review

Eleanor Roosevelt High School's Student-Run Newspaper

The Raider Review

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Who do you think will win the 2024 Superbowl?

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The Fun of “Civil War,” The Movie

Directer%3A+Alex+Garland
Directer: Alex Garland

Before watching Civil War, I had a warped perspective on what was going to happen. I knew it was about a modern civil war in America, and reviews told me about it’s parallels with party leaders, and what arrogant morals mean for the future. So on Friday, April 12th, I was shocked by the discrepancy in viewpoints me and other reviewers had. Even more shocking was my different opinions from the person that came with me.

But let’s dial it back, what happened in Civil War? Well, the movie’s first few minutes are spent with the president in DC giving a speech. Snipits of his passionate “joy” over the “fall” of the California and Texas alliances gave us background for the war. And unfortunately, the only background we get for the rest of the movie. It ends with a cut and we skip over to introducing Lee, Jessie, Tony, and Sammy. The four main characters, and what I feel colors your perception of the movie. Each character handles the war differently because of their personal situations. I’d say they are in different stages of grief. Lee is currently making the switch from indifference to rage, Jessie hasn’t been introduced to the grief yet, Tony is in denial, and Sammy has accepted his end. Once introduced, each character sets off on their vaguely political mission to interview the president while they still can. In this first introduction lots of violence is shown , bringing a vivid depiction of how these characters react to such acts. The denial, paralyzation, detachment, acceptance shown in each character is the beginning of this pick your own adventure.

The middle stage: lots happened here, including my favorite scene. Smashed in the middle of their traumatic road trip they see an abandoned fair off the side of their next right turn. Looking to go through like planned they inch closer to it, aware that the area they are closing in on has a body laying in front of it. It’s tense, once the action starts, you can’t help but yell at their choices along with the team themselves. They get to a safeish possession and speak to a soldier hiding out in a field from the danger impending on them. It was brief but telling about Tony and soldier himself. He was young, nails painted, lime green hair and about my height (5’2). The man holding a meter long gun could have walked the halls of Roosevelt without a glance. Him and the bodies they drove over were me if some rich fools felt tough enough for a war. It was one of the many reminders this movie was based in our time, and the changes we’d go through when said time comes. He was a soldier ready to die, I’d become a soldier ready to die fighting whatever shot first.

Lastly, the ending. To me the ending scene was exactly what it needed to be. An intense retelling of the beginning scene but this time with the changed characters. The strong wilted, the weak moved to the front, and naivety was left at the door. Everybody was done and intense with their actions. But at the same time the action felt distant, unlike the middle stages this wasn’t about the horrors, I wasn’t scared of what would happen to them. The constant tuff decisions they made in a moment let me know they made their choice.

Now all this is nice to know but I understand that this is just how I saw the movie, my father even said “How can you have sympathy for that devil?” while we were watching one character achieve her life goal. I’m no longer shocked by the different perspectives people have coming out of this movie. In fact, I’d say it’s a great way of depicting what I got out of it. The different ways of grief and suffering cause one latch onto different people throughout the movie, you relate to similar things most. Or maybe a different point a New York times reviewer feels, “This suggested a fictional universe in which far-right militias and antifa groups pose comparable threats.” To her, it was political and a statement about how the a party was going to overturn America’s peace if not stopped. My father? He believes it’s about racism and an ungrateful girl that betrayed her helper. Some even believe it was a hacky plot that forgets what it’s doing, like a reviewer from Houston Press: “Ha ha! Why, I’d never do something so hacky and predictable!” The politics change like the characters change for the general public, I can only recommend you watch with the notion of what you would do. Who you would be if this broke out?

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    David Thomas JohnsonMay 6, 2024 at 2:11 pm

    I like the Kirsten Dunst character, named for another famous photographer, who is simply investigating, which is what the whole movie does. Possibilities are inherent in the way that timing and events unfold, just as YOU ARE READING THIS!

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