As soon as the Boston Marathon tragedies happened I knew there would be movies about it. I remember having a conversation with my cousin about how I wanted to reach out to the organizers of the One Fund Boston and look into possible Kickstarter options about raising money to make a movie one day with ALL proceeds going to the victims and families affected by that day. I wanted to use whatever “Boston-Hollywood” connections I had to see what we could make happen. Then I got mad it myself for even thinking about it. Sure my intentions were good but it was just…too…soon. Then I heard about the books being written. And how some of them were being optioned into movies. One of the projects I heard about was a movie called “Patriots Day” that would be produced by and star Mark Wahlberg.
Over the holidays I went to see “Patriots Day.” I managed to put aside my feelings, my love for Boston, my hurt and memories from that day and put the screenwriter in me in that theater seat. That lasted for about 5 minutes and then all the emotions kicked in. Mostly anger and disgust. I know Wahlberg claimed that he wanted to make a tasteful and respectful movie. He failed at that. I’ll craft the rest of my words here directed at Mark Wahlberg and not the actors who portrayed some of the victims onscreen. Out of respect. To be tasteful. However, this review is necessary. Mark Wahlberg’s “Patriots Day” is not. Was it too soon? Absolutely. Was it respectful? Tasteful? I couldn’t tell because as someone who was there that day, as someone who has partaken in the Marathon Monday/Patriots Day tradition I was too distracted by Mark Wahlberg’s giant head and ego. What do I mean? Mark Wahlberg managed to put his fictional character in every “key” scene. Every “key” scene being a very real scene from all the events that unfolded that day and week. He was at the finish line when the bombs went off. He was saving lives on the blood covered sidewalk on Boylston St. He went from hospital door to hospital door interviewing victims. Hell, THAT was even his idea in the movie. He was at the warehouse going through the videotapes of all the businesses on Boylston St. looking to place the killers. He was driving around in circles in different cities when he heard about the police officer shooting at MIT over the radio. He was at the gas station doing the questioning after the carjacking. He was a Boston cop at the shootout in the city of Watertown. He was the first cop to find the younger killer in the boat. Hell, he was even in the walkway to the dugout and went up to David Ortiz before he came out at Fenway to give his now historic “This is our fucking city!” speech. Mark Wahlberg managed to make the movie about himself while ensuring that every other bit player Boston character was the stereotypical slow-witted, heavy accented, wise ass, blue collared, loser Bostonian. This movie wasn’t about THAT day. This movie wasn’t about the victims. This movie wasn’t about one of the darkest days in Boston and American history. This movie wasn’t about how hate drives terrorism to cause hurt and kill innocents by deforming religion. No. This movie was all about Mark Wahlberg and he is a piece of shit for making it. This movie did not need to be made. Not now. Not like this. Not with him.
Supposedly Marky Mark wanted to make the first movie about that day because he made himself Boston’s Hollywood ambassador. Mark, you haven’t lived here in over 25 years. You’re not as Boston as you like to tell people you are. Opening Wahlburgers doesn’t count for shit either. I’ll take Tasty Burger over your shit any day of the week by the way. You should be ashamed of yourself for getting this movie made. You should take your entire pay from that movie and split it among all the survivors who now have lifelong medical bills. From one man who also comes from a tough Boston neighborhood… Who also has faced hardships… Who also wears his Sox hat proudly… Who loves movies probably even more than you… Who has made Patriots Day a part of an annual tradition for 20 years… You fucked up. Plain and simple. Stick to making swearing teddy bear movies when it comes to Boston. You insulted “your” city and ABSOLUTELY disrespected every single person whose life was changed that day. So on behalf of my entire city, please turn in your long expired Boston card.
Until next time. Always take it there.