Watching today's kids, seeing who they truly are

At this writing, Kids, a hotly controversial film, which follows the lives of a few teenagers for twenty-four hours in New York City, has been playing in the United States for some weeks. What has sparked debate is not simply that the film graphically portrays extremely unsafe sex, as well as drug use and a host of other crimes by its young characters in a dysfunctional age. Other films have shown that. The difference is that the teenage characters here register no awareness of the brutality they are engaged in.

A New York Times article gives an overview of several decades of landmark films on rebellious teens. It says: "The teen-agers in 'Kids' are not screaming wild animals anymore, but dull, mindless ones, untouched by idealism or fear. ... As such, they are out of reach; there's no hope for them" (July 16, 1995).

September 18, 1995

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