The Orion

Profiting from the Isla Vista tragedy

Nick Bragg

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Illustration by Trevor Moore Photo credit: Trevor Moore

Everyone remembers the tragic May 2014 shootings that took place in the college town of Isla Vista. Students, friends and family members of the victims are still in shock about the deaths of their loved ones. Now just over a year later, Berger Bros., an independent film company, is planning to make a horror film about the shooting.

Elliot Rodger, the man behind the gun, took six student lives and left 14 seriously injured after his rampage. His reasoning? Carefully detailed in his last video, Rodger felt that society had failed him and humans were a disgusting species, all because females were never attracted to him.

After watching the movie trailer, I was completely astonished by how the director, Shaun Hart, glorified the acts of violence that happened that day. The film’s poster reads, “monsters aren’t born, they are created,” which suggests the shootings were justified. The creators of the film have some nerve to base a horror film on a shooting that left families in tears and rattled college towns across America. Uproars of backlash against the Berger Bros. quickly flooded the trailer’s comment section on YouTube.

I think a more acceptable way to publicize the Isla Vista shootings would be to create an informative documentary, which could include multiple campus shootings that have occurred across America. The documentary could cover issues such as gun control, mental illness and the effects of bullying on young adults. Documentaries have the potential to educate on important issues and stop history from repeating itself.

Horror films are created strictly for profit and entertainment.

The Berger Bros. issued a public apology on their YouTube channel stating they had never intended to monopolize the scarring Isla Vista shootings. Hart stated in his apology that he is a UCSB graduate, and that day was like a “knife to his heart” (which I find is a phony apology). If the Berger Bros. were really sorry, they would notice the number of people they have offended and actually stop the production of the movie.

But no, the profit is too tempting. People will do anything nowadays if there’s a dollar sign in front of it. I guess monsters aren’t born, they are created.

Nick Bragg can be reached at [email protected] or @Nick981 on Twitter.

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Profiting from the Isla Vista tragedy