Thursday, March 24, 2011

Getting Serious

they're bad for you. and you know it. but you wanna get strong. so you take them anyway.
ever been there?

well honestly, I haven't.
but then, if you know me, you can probably tell.
So to realize that a documentary
about big, tanned, muscled strongmen
like Hulk Hogan, Sylvester Stallone, and Arnold Schwarzenegger
and the men who sought to imitate them
was actually to my mind pretty fascinating
-- It caught me by surprise.

Anyway, there's this movie I watched the other week late at night with some friends.
It was about Steroids.
And about wrestling, and baseball, and fighter pilots,
And about heroes, and hypocrites, and truth seekers,
And about guys living in cluttered, old vans, waiting for their big break, to get famous pumping some serious iron,
And about husband/father/brother(s) who can't keep from sacrificing just about everything for their drug of choice:

The movie is called Bigger, Stronger, Faster.
And now I know, Steroids won't kill you, nor make you go berserk. And you really can't say they're cheating, if you think of all the other stuff people use to compete (supplements, corrective eye surgery, stress-relief drug use, cortisone shots, and blood doping -- all legal ways to enhance your performance, and signs that America might be just a little bit overly obsessed with achieving success).
But you sure can say they're distortive.
They set everything out of proportion: It's like, you wish you could just take a drug, and then be able to be always at your very best and be able to do everything you've always wanted to do ... (O, wait, that's what Limitless is about.)  Well, anyways, Steroids seem to allow you to do that, at least from a weight-lifter's and athlete's point of view. But then they also make you into something you're not. Or something. I couldn't figure it out.

So, it seems, Chris Bell decided to make this documentary, after deciding he didn't want to do Steroids anymore and gave up his dream of being a weight-lifting super-champ.
He interviews politicians, activists, models, actors, and heavy-weight-lifters (like his two brothers, Mike and Mark), and tries to figure out the truth about America, and Steroids.

It's kinda a depressing movie, because it exposes the terrible costs
to one part of the American (Success) Dream
-- being an American Hero --
people literally lose their jobs, their lives, their dreams, and their family trust
so Chris Bell can get closer and closer to exposing the truth.
And in the end, you wonder what you've learned.

For a guy who's never really fit the cultural definition of a Manly Man,
it was fascinating to a disturbing degree. it even made me think, Hey, I wanna try Steroids!
(okay, not really. i was just kidding. but actually . . . )

It just goes to show you, Things ain't ever what they seem.

If for nothing else, watch it for the ugly, over-muscled cows: So Gross!

1 comment:

  1. Bleh. Steroids make me think of the Batman Villian, Bain, who is super strong cuz of Venom. Kinda like Steroids? 100 times stronger and 100 times worse side-effects. Moral to my commment: dont do drugs. You end up a super villian or something