Lack of conflict in V for Vendetta (2005)

  1. It's that way in the source material, too. I don't remember much of the movie anymore, but in the comics, V was basically the only superhuman in the entire world: a product of human experimentation granted super intelligence.

  2. Thinking of Evey as the main character makes more sense as the invincible vigilante narrative is rather plausible in that case. We’re not following his always-successful exploits but a mere struggling human that is Evey.

  3. Well technically there is conflict but it is never even slightly challenging for V as he’s physically and strategically ahead of everyone at all times. No scene shows him struggling to achieve something.

  4. It turns out Alan Moore was pretty optimistic back in the day. He thought an Anonymous group of revolutionaries would do good and overthrow a tyrannical state instead of using their power to harass marginal groups, and crafted a scenario where world governments would come together in the face of a mere alien invasion. Well we all know better now, don’t we?

  5. Just to comment on the beginning bit - for any of his optimism, I think that something the comics also did well (I know your comment was not necessarily on quality) was express realistic criticism intra- and extra-textually to his anarchic character's philosophy and actions. We can likely tell where his sympathies lie but it also dodged the perfect protagonist type of flaw the story could have had and made it uninteresting. I feel like the film does a poor job of expressing that. Evey does have a critique or two, but it's pretty quickly shut down.

  6. I think if there was substantial resistance from the population it would make the film too bloated and also work against its themes trying to be expressed. Both the movie and the comic make it very clear that V is not a man, he is an idea. Obviously within the narrative he is literally a man, but thematically he is the manifestation of an idea.

  7. I should’ve said “no challenge” instead of conflict. Yes there is conflict but it is not actualized in the film as the antagonist is completely helpless against V.

  8. It is that way in the comic, but it's treated a bit differently - V isn't meant to be as much of a character as he is in the film. He's an enigma, a cipher. A mystery for Evey and Finch to try to figure out. He's someone everyone else bounces off of, and in his machinations he's presented as (if you'll pardon the cliche expression) a Force of Nature, equal to Norsefire.

  9. I've just finished watching the film and I feel exactly the same (I'm not familiar with the original source material). V's emotional arc didn't really convince me, maybe due to the lack of, well, facial expressions from him, but also because he faces no antagonist. His plan is (literally) bulletproof, he is never captured and faces actual danger or challenge. I felt like the detective's point of view was the more interesting one.

  10. And how can you be morally complex when one side is a Nazi-Big Brother copycat while the other side preaches buzzwords like freedom?

  11. It suffers from the same problem as most such films, which is the belief that if only the public learns the truth about the government, they will rise up against it. We know more than ever that this isn't true.

  12. This hits upon one of my biggest issues with the film, namely that the government seemed too incompetent to be taken seriously. For instance, V kills somebody (I haven't seen the film in a long time, so I can't remember the exact details), and their death is reported on the news as being of natural causes. Evie, however, realizes that the newscaster is lying; but why would she have been told the truth about their death in the first place? This kind of thing made watching the movie frustrating for me.

  13. I also share your disbelief in the movie. Not only was there no basis for people's participation in the uprising, but there were also limited clues about their dissatisfaction with the status quo. There was never really any dissent, hence no need for change.

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