“Nightcrawler” is an intense little movie about some pretty big ideas. The media we consumer as a culture has to come from somewhere, and this movie focuses in on one particular part of our media, one that long ago has seen the ideal of “journalistic integrity” shredded to bits in the wake of advertising dollars and sweeps weeks ratings, that being the news, the people and companies tasked with dispensing information to the concerned public.
Like any other television program, your local news programs on the various networks are all vying for the same eyeballs, and it is a bit of a war when it comes to the ratings. And just like with any other programming entity, the better the ratings for the show, the higher the cost of advertising on said show. Get more people to watch your, show, get more money spent on your show, which means more money for the powers that be. And it appears that much of the news programs have somehow honed in on the fact that they can exploit our nation’s fears by focusing on the violent crimes in the area and tying them all together. And when people get scared, they stay home, and they watch more television. And which news programs do they choose to watch? Well the ones with the best information, of course, with the “best” stories, which usually means worse stuff. It’s like we watch the news for the same reasons we watch horror movies, to be scared and then reassured that it wasn’t us who were hacked to death by a cholo gang in south Los Angeles, and it wasn’t us decapitated in some horrible desert by insane people, no sir, not us, we are home with our microwavable food and high def TVs and our smartphones and we are safe and sound, unharmed by the psychos and drunk drivers and drug dealers slowly yet surely creeping into our suburban neighborhoods.
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