Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Evident change... but eh...

The plot of Se7en is extremely different from the other movies that we have watched thus far in that race does not enter into the movie at all. When watching Beverly Hills Cop one cannot help thinking about the fact that Eddie Murphy is the lone (truly important) black character in the entire movie. The same goes for Lethal Weapon; Danny Glover is all alone, and his pairing with the white Aussie, Mel Gibson, is quite blatant. And it is obvious that race is the main theme of In the Heat of the Night.

With Se7en, however, the changes that occur in the characters are not race-driven at all. Instead you have a sort of teacher and mentor situation. Somerset is the experienced veteran of the world of the homicide detective, while Mills, though he claims to be experienced, is far less mature in his detective actions. Throughout the movie Somerset is constantly reprimanding Mills for his seemingly over-enthusiastic tendencies. Mills passion (i.e. breaking into John Doe’s apartment) eventually leads to his undoing, the murder of John Doe in the field. Even in this instance, Somerset tries to hold Mills back, but, in the end, the pain of knowing of his wife’s murder is too much for the younger man.

Somerset also changes slightly. He is so ready to retire, even a few days into the series of murders. Later on, though, he decides to stay on to see the thing through. He enjoys being involved in crime solving more than he thought. His voice-over at the very end was a bit out of the blue. The whole ending was anticlimactic in general. Such horrific crimes build up a lot of tension, and for it to just end so suddenly, for there to be no real dénouement, was disappointing. For there to be a voice-over at the end when there is none anywhere else in the movie is sketchy in a narrative sense. Even the closing line is sketchy: “Ernest Hemingway once wrote, ‘The world is a fine place and worth fighting for.’ I agree with the second part.” Not a very good ending.


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