Sunday, May 19, 2013

WATCHING WHEN I DON'T WATCH

Twice last week I missed parts of a movie and a TV show, because I'm visually squeamish about scenes that are too violent, too bloody, or too frightening.  Obviously, my aversions rather limit what I watch.  I read about the movies I select for my Netflix queue, and sometimes when the films arrive in my mailbox several weeks later, I wonder why I chose them.

Recently, I sat down to watch Inception, and, after 20 minutes or so, I could not work out what the story was about, so I quit.  When I was younger, I would have plodded on, but no more.  20 minutes of my life was enough.  Why I chose the film, I can't say, because science fiction is not my favorite genre.  Perhaps I was persuaded by the good reviews.

 The next film in the queue, based on a true story, was 127 hours, which was very well done.  When the movie arrived I remembered the story and wondered again why I chose it, because in the course of the film the main character, Aron Ralston, when he is trapped by a falling boulder while making his solitary way through a crevice in a canyon in a remote spot in Canyonlands National Park in Utah, is forced to cut off his own arm to save his life .  The film is pretty much a one-man show, except for the beginning and end and the characters who inhabit Ralson's hallucinations and flashbacks while he's trapped.  I had to have known that the amputation would play a large part in the movie, and I would not be able to watch.  Of course I couldn't, and while I was not watching, I missed other important scenes in that flashed on the screen while Aron was in the proccess of  cutting off his arm with a dull knife.  So it goes.

The BBC series, The Bletchley Circle, tells a story of four women, Susan, Millie, Jean, and Lucy, who worked at Bletchley, the top secret code-breaking headquarters in England during WWII, and have moved on with their lives post-WWII.  When a serial murderer kills a number of women, and the police cannot discover the identity of the murderer to stop the killings, the four join together, using their skills developed at Blatchley, to help find the killer.  When the police refuse to take seriously the information given them by the women, they decide to find the killer on their own. In the final episode of the three Susan finds a clue, and, in true mystery story convention, she goes off alone to find the murderer and puts herself in great jeopardy.  Without spoiling the ending, I'll just say that I could not watch the frightening scenes, and, once again, I missed necessary parts of the drama.  And how could I spoil the end anyway, if I didn't see it?

What shall I do?  Next time, will I be able to bite the bullet and watch the scenes?  I don't know, but I must do something different.

UPDATE: I must add that I thoroughly enjoyed The Bletchley Circle, and I read that the second season is now being filmed.