Black roses (1988)

When a movie informs you that it’s a Shapiro-Glickenhaus production, you’re in for a ride. And Black Roses did not disappoint.

I’ve always been intrigued by the psychological/political dimensions of the 80s. Poltergeist kind of touches on this in the most subtle way, how family dynamics were altered during this decade. Black Roses picked up on this concept and ran with it.

The film shines a spotlight on the contradictions within Reagan-era politics: parents being appalled yet titillated by youth culture (and a complete lack of awareness that these tensions exist). The story of Black Roses centers on some “heavy metal” band coming to small town USA and corrupting its youth. The youth become demon-possessed and start killing their parents. Only a mustached English teacher stands in their way.

Of course, the band is entirely blamed for the “corruption”. Despite the shitty parenting throughout, the adults never once ask themselves: “are we to blame?”. But I guess parenting styles in the 1980s didn’t include things like paying attention to your children. Additionally, because parents were unable to take responsibility for themselves, we now have “culture wars”…which stem back to this decade…on which adults can use as a scapegoat for why they have shitty children.

Now I’m probably giving the filmmakers WAY to much credit for this analysis. They probably just wanted to show rock n’ roll and boobs with a few demons thrown in for good measure. But all good art is a reflection on the time it was produced. And Black Roses certainly pulls back the curtain on Reagan’s America.

It’s your responsibility to shape the next generation

Being a parent has been the most rewarding experience of my life. My son’s a beautiful soul and it’s my responsibility to see him grow into a respectable adult.

The worst thing about parenting though? Other parents.

Kids are smarter than their parents. It’s true. I’ve become a complete fuckin’ moron since becoming a dad. You’re kids will grow up to be smarter than you.

So just remember that next time you get pissed at them: they’ll remember what you did, because you’re an idiot, and it’ll stay with them the rest of their lives.

Which is why it kinda annoys me to see parents get all giddy when they see an opportunity to beat the shit out of their kids. Actually, it pisses me off.

Of course, it’s done under the guise of “punishment” and “character building.” But in actuality, the parent is performing retribution or justification for what their parents did to them.

“Sometimes kids are little shits though” you might say.

So are you, but no one (usually) knocks you up the side of the head.

The justification I always hear is “that’s what’s wrong with this generation. Their parents don’t beat em anymore.” When I’ve heard this, it’s in reference to the prevalence of school shooters.

But show me a school shooter, and I’ll show you a kid that got their ass kicked by their parents.

But if you genuinely believe that there is something wrong with “this generation,” then it’s your fault. Or it’s your parents fault.

If you want a better generation, then don’t make the same mistakes your parents did, and have the humility to learn from your own.

“Oh, who are you? Mr. Perfect Dad of the Year?” you say.

You’re damn right.