Carrey says Kick Ass 2 is too violent. What changed?

What fresh information did Jim Carrey glean from the massacre at Sandy Hook that wasn’t already available to anyone who was paying attention?

Share

As his new film, Kick-Ass 2, heads for the cinema, Jim Carrey has withdrawn his promotional support. It’s a powerful step for a major box-office draw, taken in response to the Sandy Hook massacre. But it prompts the question: what changed, Jim?

You started work on Kick-Ass 2 in September last year. Presumably as part of that process you watched the original Kick-Ass movie, which featured, among other memorable moments, an 11-year-old girl, armed with twin revolvers, graphically dispatching a corridor filled with at least a dozen thugs, and later exploding another one with a bazooka. That movie was filmed not long after a deranged US Army major murdered 13 people at Fort Hood. And your own role in the sequel came not long after 12 innocent moviegoers were shot dead in Aurora, Colorado. So here’s what I don’t understand: what fresh information did you glean from the massacre at Sandy Hook that wasn’t already available to anyone who was paying attention? Also, will you be giving your considerable fee back?

Carrey has form for confusion on the subject. His coruscating viral video mocking the NRA was swiftly followed by an angry commentary insisting that “no one is asking anyone to give up their right to bear arms”. All the same, sudden conversions can be plausible, or even admirable, when they are based on a substantial change in one’s understanding of the facts. The problem here is that it’s hard to take Carrey seriously when the main results of his action will be to gain the movie more publicity, as in articles like this one, and to shift the focus from the obvious real point: not the guns in the movies, but the guns on the streets. 

There’s an argument to be made here about the effects of movies like this; if I were an A-lister, I would have certainly thought twice about appearing in the Kick-Ass sequel, enjoy its predecessor though I did. Cultural depictions of violence certainly tell us something worrying about ourselves, whether or not they provoke it.

But surely those of us in the reality-based community can at least agree this much: the media’s causative link with massacres is rather slighter than that of lunatics having such easy access to the weaponry of their choice. Until that debate is settled in America – which, remarkably, will not be any time soon – interventions of this sort will be nothing more than a distraction. 

In the meantime, we’re probably better off forgetting about the Jim Carrey of 2013, and enjoying the performance given by the Jim Carrey of 2012, all the while remembering that both Jim Carreys have a lot in common with the one who campaigned so harmfully against the MMR vaccine. On this issue, as on that one, he is entitled to his opinion. But we are entitled to ignore it. 

React Now

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Legal Cashier - Oxford

Very Competitive: Austen Lloyd: Legal Cashier - Oxford We have an excellent ...

Legal Cashier - Oxford

Very Competitive: Austen Lloyd: Legal Cashier - Oxford We have an excellent ...

Production and Merchandising Assistant

£19,000 - £21,000: Sauce Recruitment: A contemporary, original wholesale distr...

PPC Account Managers

£25k - £30k (DOE): Guru Careers: Two expert PPC Account Managers are needed to...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

The daily catch-up: Joe on Vlad, banks of the Jordan and Blair's radicalism

John Rentoul
 

Believe me, I said, there’s nothing rural about this urban borough’s attempt at a country fair

John Walsh
Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

The 'scroungers’ fight back

The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

Fireballs in space

Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
A Bible for billionaires

A Bible for billionaires

Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

Paranoid parenting is on the rise

And our children are suffering because of it
For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn
Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Meet the man who doesn't want to go down in history as the country's last Scottish Secretary
Legoland Windsor's master model-makers reveal the tricks of their trade (including how to stop the kids wrecking your Eiffel Tower)

Meet the people who play with Lego for a living

They are the master builders: Lego's crack team of model-makers, who have just glued down the last of 650,000 bricks as they recreate Paris in Windsor. Susie Mesure goes behind the scenes
The 20 best days out for the summer holidays: From Spitfires to summer ferry sailings

20 best days out for the summer holidays

From summer ferry sailings in Tyne and Wear and adventure days at Bear Grylls Survival Academy to Spitfires at the Imperial War Museum Duxford and bog-snorkelling at the World Alternative Games...
Open-air theatres: If all the world is a stage, then everyone gets in on the act

All the wood’s a stage

Open-air productions are the cue for better box-office receipts, new audiences, more interesting artistic challenges – and a picnic
Rand Paul is a Republican with an eye on the world

Rupert Cornwell: A Republican with an eye on the world

Rand Paul is laying out his presidential stall by taking on his party's disastrous record on foreign policy
Self-preservation society: Pickles are moving from the side of your plate to become the star dish

Self-preservation society

Pickles are moving from the side of your plate to become the star dish
Generation gap opens a career sinkhole

Britons live ever longer, but still society persists in glorifying youth

We are living longer but considered 'past it' younger, the reshuffle suggests. There may be trouble ahead, says DJ Taylor