Friday, April 11, 2014

J is for Jumping Jack Flash

I watched Jumping Jack Flash on TV a few years ago. Loved Whoopi Goldberg in it. It's not a five star movie, but it's at least three star inching toward a four star. Whoopi has rarely found roles worthy of her talent.

However, I got the movie the other day and decided to re-watched. Since it was on DVD and not on the TV, none of the obscenities were edited out. Wow. That's why I downgraded it from a four star to a three star. I think of obscenities as seasoning on a meal. Too much and the meal is ruined. Mostly because the vulgarities start to lose their power. Eventually a four-letter word becomes meaningless through repetition.

A lot of writers do that: pepper their works with so many "shocking" words that the words lose all meaning. Especially if they use them as adjectives. A "f-ing good time" is the vulgar equivalent of saying a "very good time." Most people know to not use "very" because it is basically meaningless. Eventually, the overuse of the "f-word" empties the word of its shock value.

Use vulgarities to good effect if you're going to use them. Otherwise, they're bankrupt language. Worse than that, they're lazy language.

1 comment:

  1. Whoopi Goldberg is synonymous with obscenity. She does have remarkable talent. Like Robin Williams, she overuses the profanity. I haven't seen that movie in quite some time, but as I recall, I enjoyed it.