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Realism In The Movie, Training Day

1279 words - 5 pages

"Realism in, art and literature, [is] an attempt to describe human behavior and surroundings or to represent figures and objects exactly as they act or appear in life" (Realism 1). During the 1840's through the 1890's realism was present in much of the literature from the United Sates and Europe. It has been said that realism is easily visible in many pieces of modern literature and even in present day films. In 2001, the movie Training Day was released into theaters. Many critics agreed that the movie was very realistic. In fact, the main actor Denzel Washington was presented with an academy award for his performance in Training Day. Training Day can be considered realistic, but many aspects of the film show little realism.

The movie, Training Day, demonstrates how some police officers take advantage of their positions which is realistic. Mikkelsen states that, ?The new movie Training Day is an excellent fictional demonstration of how the State, in this case the police, provide a ?legalized channel for crime? (Mikkelsen 1).? It is hard to define the line between doing the right thing and doing the wrong thing to stop a crime. As Mikkelson explains, ?Many of the events are to be expected: violence against suspects, confiscation and use of drugs and especially money, violations of due process, graft (Mikkelsen 1).? At the end of the movie the main character is murdered and the police department makes up a story venerating his death in a positive manner. In all truth Harris was murdered by the Russians because he lost his temper and killed someone who was ?talking trash? about him. This is shown when Mikkelsen says, ?The state must defend cops, when possible, because publicity about ?bad cops? does not reflect well on the state. The state and the public will accept what state agents sell (Mikkelsen 2).?

Some critics argue that the actors chosen to portray the characters in the film were not good choices. An interesting quote from Mr. Cranky?s movie rating reads, ?I?ve said to several gang bangers, ?Hey, I heard you talking and thought you were Ethan Hawke,? and they?ve responded, ?Yeah, man, I get that a lot (Mr. Cranky 1).?? Not everyone thought the acting was horrible, because Denzel Washington won an Academy Award for his performance. Without the movie it would be very difficult to imagine someone like Ethan Hawke in an environment like the setting of Training Day. This alone was enough to spoil the realism in the movie.

Others argue that the end of the movie is what drags it from being realistic to fictional. Chitra Mahesh from The Hindu newspaper writes, ?Which is why it is unfortunate that such a gritty film with so much realism, would descend to such a pallid climax (Mahesh 2).? The same writer also says, ?Graphic visuals, a violent theme, and ambiguous morals make Warner Bros Inc ?Training Day,? out of the routine. It had the opportunity to be a great film, but the last 20 minutes drag it down to average...

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