Oliver Stone has never been one to shy away from controversial statements. During a press tour for the Blu-ray release of his documentary series, “The Untold History of the United States”, Stone told Todd Gilchrist of Forbes that he wasn’t one of the those singing the praises of Vince Gilligan’s final “Breaking Bad” episode. The Director of “Natural Born Killers” and “Platoon” had a problem with the level of violence that capped the series. Oliver Stone is actually against violence unless used in one of his films. Stone’s major point from the interview with Forbes seems to hinge on the believability of the ending.
Stone pointedly critiqued Walter White’s method of handling the gang that kidnapped Jesse. “Nobody could park his car right then and there and could have a machine gun that could go off perfectly and kill all of the bad guys! It would be a joke,” he insisted. “It’s only in the movies that you find this kind of fantasy violence. And that’s infected the American culture; you young people believe all of this shit! Batman and Superman, you’ve lost your minds, and you don ‘t even know it! At least respect violence. I’m not saying don’t show violence, but show it with authenticity.
Stone has a point, but do we really want to hear it? “Breaking Bad” was a show built upon the reality of a high school teacher who transitions into a Heisenberg criminal genius. The finale did stretch in a few parts, but it was worth it to get resolution from all the story lines. It is ridiculous to think the machine gun in the trunk would kill everyone in the room, but Gilligan only had 44 minutes to tell the final story.
If the price of seeing that amazing final scene between Walt and Skyler was swallowing a little unbelievability then so be it. Stone after all was the director who had a football player lose an eye in the middle of the field during “Any Given Sunday” so he knows about excessive violence. “Breaking Bad” might not have been perfect, but the ending helped complete the story.