Perhaps the greatest irony of global warming will be when it drives us all to kill each other.
The BBC reported a recent study in England citing that between April 2010 and June 2018, violent crimes jumped an average of 14 per cent during heat waves. And a Mexican study examining 16 years' worth of data found that for every one degree celcius of temperature increase, crime went up 1.3 per cent.
Certainly, it takes a hardened criminal to lurk in the shadows when it's -32 C (with the wind chill), but extreme heat seems like it might trigger a physiological response that makes people more irritable, aggressive and murderous.
So rather than take matters into our own bloody hands this week, there's no time like the present to hit up the air-conditioned Whistler Village 8 and watch the horror unfold onscreen.
Slender Man opens Friday, and while there were no pre-screenings, this one is worth seeing just for the way it came to be.
Back in 2009, as part of a Photoshop contest on an internet forum, Eric Knudsen (under the pseudonym "Victor Surge") created a tall, spectral character with creepy tentacle-like limbs and inserted him into two vintage photos of schoolchildren, with invented captions to add realism (think "found footage" genre à la The Blair Witch Project). Slender Man was born.
The internet quickly adopted and repurposed the idea of this slim, sinister entity. He kidnaps children and lurks in misty forests—part fairytale, part H.P. Lovecraft and very easy to get freaked out by. Numerous stories, video games, and other iterations were quickly created, culminating this week in the Hollywood film.
Slender Man is about a group of teenage girlfriends fascinated by the internet mythology of the Slender Man, until one of them goes missing...and it's up to the others to battle their fears and bring her back.
Dun dun duhhh!
Director Sylvain White is best known for I'll Always Know What You Did Last Summer, the sequel no one wanted and proud owner of a zero-per-cent Rotten Tomatoes rating.
With that pedigree, who knows how good Slender Man will be, but it's rated 14A and is worth checking out, if only to witness this phase of internet-created culture.
Because as Hollywood scrapes the bottom of their idea jar, the internet will likely start dictating more of what gets made. (The next internet-conceived movie could be that fan-demanded Rihanna/Lupita Nyong'o heist flick from Ava DuVernay [Selma, A Wrinkle in Time]. That will rule if it happens.)
Also opening, also with no pre-screeners, The Meg is a star-studded shark movie about a 75-foot prehistoric monster that attacks an undersea research station (and if the trailer is to be believed: a tourist beach, a yacht, a small dog, and more). We covered the universal awesomeness of shark movies back in May, but this one has Jason Statham, Ruby Rose and perhaps the largest Megalodon to be seen since Shark Attack 3: Megalodon. What more do you need, really?
If the heat wave is actually making you think about committing some crimes, maybe check out the Netflix true-crime show I Am A Killer, about U.S. criminals condemned to death row. Or not condemned; in Episode 1 they focus on a dude from Florida who was so sick of constantly being sent into "close management" (solitary confinement) that once he did get a cellmate (a child molester), he strangled him in order to be sent to death row because, "the food is better there and it's quieter. Everyone knows they're not going anywhere." If you're into that sort of thing, I Am A Killer gives an unfiltered and in-depth look into the minds of a few of the 8,000 people currently living under a state-appointed death sentence in the U.S. It's raw, and it doesn't look like a whole lot of fun.
So maybe it's better to beat this heat by cooling off in the lake instead of turning to violent crime—no sharks, either.