Special Movie Update: Final Conclusions for THE EAST (2013)

While I don’t usually post on Wednesdays, I wanted to give an update to my inchoate thoughts on The East from Monday. The full post is here, but my basic analysis was that The East was an oversimplified glorification of modern-day counterculture resistance movements. By insisting on punishing individuals for their corporate crimes, the eco-terrorist group The East fails to point their gun at the real culprit, which is the society that relies on and supports those crimes every day.  By the end of the movie, there is a gesture toward moral complication and a potential solution for how to effect change and hold people responsible for their actions without resorting to crime and violence. However, it never goes beyond the cliched “if we kill those who kill others, we are no different than they are” approach. The last two minutes of footage rolling during the end credits were the most provocative of the entire film, which is far from a glowing endorsement.

Oh, and there are at least two more “ludicrously absurd, self-serious, and hilarious-because-it-wasn’t-supposed-to-be-funny” moments to enjoy, so that might increase incentive. I tried to find the scene I mentioned in the original post on youtube, but no luck. Let me just say that it was an awesome combination of psych-ward bondage and community dinner.

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5 Responses to Special Movie Update: Final Conclusions for THE EAST (2013)

  1. jjames36 says:

    I guess your opinion didn’t change as you finished it. 😉

    I thought that dinner scene less silly than you did, honestly. I wouldn’t call it dynamic, but I didn’t think it unintentionally funny either.

    • I just thought that the big reveal of how to eat with no arm movement was a total cliche. The whole time I was hoping and wishing that they wouldn’t do what they ended up doing, so when they did it with such gravitas I could’t help but explode into laughter.

      Thanks again for the comment, and I will go over to your site and check out the review.

      • jjames36 says:

        I hear you. I thought it was pretty telegraphed, too, which is to say I don’t disagree with you. At all. The cliche just didn’t bother me as much as it did you, for whatever reason.

  2. Jack Flacco says:

    I’m going to have to watch this. Ellen Page’s awesome, but sometimes even good actors don’t make the movie fly. Not sure what I’ll think–hopefully it’s not a movie like Rendition…but that’s another story!

    • I would love to hear that story. It has been years since I watched that movie, but I don’t remember disliking it. My guess is that it was too heavy-handed and perhaps emotionally manipulative for your taste. I know that extraordinary rendition is a real thing, but I imagine this “truth” was grossly embellished for the film. But yeah, check out The East. It was the best time watching a bad movie I have had in a really long time.

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