I recently watched the film ‘Faster’ starring Dwayne The Rock Johnson as ‘the Driver’. He is released from prison and sets about finding and killing the people who killed his brother. An assassin is sent to stop him and there is also a cop played by Billy Bob Thornton (who is made to look older and scruffy) on his trail. The three central characters are the good, the bad and the ugly (the assassin has a ringtone with the music from that movie).
Half way through the film I was confused as I wondered in what sense is someone who kills people to gain revenge good? The Driver has the opportunity to kill the assassin and the cop but spares them both, but does this make him good when he kills others without remorse?
In the trailer (you can watch it through the youtube link if you’re not too squeamish) the preacher says ‘I wanna talk to you today about forgiveness. The road to revenge is a dead end street. Put down that 45 that 38 put it down brother forgive them and it will set you free’. This is what made the film so fascinating for me, on one hand revenge and violence is glamourized but on the other we are being told that revenge is a dead end street and that forgiveness sets us free. The Driver is portrayed as a heroic character but at the same time the hopelessness of what he is doing is also exposed.
The Driver confronts the preacher and the preacher asks ‘will you forgive me?’ The Driver has a dilemma, does he continue his revenge by killing this man who was there when his brother was killed or does he turn away and forgive the man whose life has been transformed? Is he defined as someone who is consumed by revenge or can he let go of his hatred? Well I had better not say because some of you won’t have see the film yet.
Watching the film made me want to reflect on what is driving me. When I make mistakes or do things I regret what is it that has driven me to do those things? Am I willing to reflect on any negative things that are affecting me and to let go of them? I certainly hope that I have the courage for this.