These were the guys who commanded respect. They did it by the way they walked, the way they dressed, the money they flashed and the honeys they always had around them. But they also expounded a sense of danger; of "mess with me at your own risk". In a word, it was the image they projected. In our country, and I guess the entire world for that matter, it's all about the vision of how you picture yourself to everyone else. Perception has become reality.
Today, the art of image and branding yourself is, basically the same as it's been for the last century. The cool, "bad boys" are still the ones the young males look up to and want to emulate, and the ones that most of the women are hypnotically attracted to by the sheer power of their bravado and aura. The tragedy is that most of the time the "bad boys" are caught up in bad behavior and this becomes acceptable to the legion of fans who follow and admire them.
When Tony Montana strutted his gangsterish path of drug dealing, torture and murder up on the movie screen in the '80's, young kids were mesmerized and idolized every move he made. That flick came out almost 30 years ago, but "Scarface" tee shirts are still worn out on the streets today. Tony Montana stood for everything vile, amoral and negative in American life, but he turned into a warped, distorted "god" to a nation of young males. That's because he maintained the image of dangerous cool throughout the two hour movie. And his brand is as powerful in 2010 as it was in 1983.
This brings me to the movie I saw with a friend a few days ago called 'The Expendables' (Pictured Above). I have basically outgrown the violent, action movie that I enjoyed when I was younger and wanted to see another film, but my friend was insistent on seeing old school studs, Sly Stallone, Bruce Willis, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren...etc, all together in the same flick. It even has a cameo by "The Governator".
All I can tell you is that this movie, to me, takes violence to a new level. The weapons they used were state-of-the-art and I found out there are at least 50 different ways you can butcher a person with a knife. Heads were literally blown off and bodies cut in half. And the sad part is: most of the audience didn't even blink.
A while later, I went online and saw this:
(CNN) -- Boston police have arrested three suspects who they say stabbed a Domino's pizza delivery man and drove off in his car.
Two teenangers and a 20-year-old are charged with homicide in what investigators described as a brutal crime.
Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel Conley said 58-year-old Richel Nova's death "was chilling in its callousness and violence."Perception is now reality.