"No Real Heroes"
What You Need To Know:
Despite its positive outcomes, FRAGMENTS does not end on an inspiring message of Christian faith. Instead, the movie ultimately rejects one female character’s expressions of Christian faith. Her faith seems more like a crutch she needs, to avoid the truth about what really happened in the diner. In fact, the ending shows she has deliberately lied about the events. FRAGMENTS also suggests there are no real heroes in life. This depressing humanist message is accompanied by plenty of strong foul language, a couple depicted sex scenes and brief nudity. Apparently, the filmmakers were afraid of becoming too maudlin, sentimental, religious, or too pure.
(HHH, AbAb, C, B, LLL, VVV, SS, NN, AA, DD, MM) Very strong humanist, agnostic worldview, viewpoint and philosophy ultimately over-shadows movie’s positive Christian, moral content and references, including traumatized girl retreats to religion, but it seems to be more of a crutch; about 19 mostly strong obscenities (mostly “f” words), two strong profanities and eight light profanities; very strong violence with blood includes pointblank shootings, blood by man’s head, blood runs down man’s body, people in diner frightened by very loud gunshots, young teenage children hide under table from gunman, woman collapses, young teenage boy considers committing suicide by jumping off bridge, and doctor tries to poison his wife with prescription drugs; strong sexual content depicted sex in two scenes, implied sex, implied prostitution, woman is interested in married doctor and he seems to be interested in her, and young teenage girl kisses boy on his lips; brief shots of upper female nudity and some shots of upper male nudity, plus brief rear nudity; alcohol; use and drunkenness; smoking and doctor illegally gives wife two prescription drugs to kill her; and, lying, gambling not rebuked, mother neglects the feeding of her baby, mother goes into bar and leaves baby in car, mother is upset about her traumatized daughter turning suddenly to religion.
FRAGMENTS is an independent drama about the effects of a traumatic shooting incident on the people in a small town near Los Angeles. A lackluster ending gives the depressing message that there are no real heroes in life.
The movie opens with a gunman entering a diner, where he starts shooting people. The story begins revealing the effects that the incident has on the survivors of the shooting. At the same time, it slowly reveals the details about the shooting in several flashbacks.
The waitress in the diner reacts to the shooting by neglecting her illegitimate baby. She’s in love with the handsome married doctor, Dr. Bruce Larraby, who left the diner just as the killer was entering. Larraby is attracted to the waitress, so he decides to get rid of his wife by poisoning her.
Meanwhile, a black driving instructor injured slightly during the incident leaves the hospital prematurely and goes to a local gambling casino. Finally, a young teenage girl, Anne, who hid underneath a table with a friend while her father was shot dead, turns to Jesus and God. She starts attracting other kids to her message of faith and the lauding of her father as a hero.
Instead of ending on an inspiring message of Christian faith, the movie’s ending shows that there are no real heroes. Also, instead of picking out a biblical passage, the ending comes up with a vague humanist aphorism about leaning on the average hopes and dreams in everyday life.
Ultimately, FRAGMENTS seems to reject Anne’s expressions of faith in Jesus Christ and God. Thus, despite the positive outcomes to most of the stories it tells, the movie fails to provide much true inspiration or comfort at the end. Apparently, the filmmakers were afraid of becoming too maudlin, sentimental or religious. Independent movies like FRAGMENTS are made for cynical, jaded, adult audience, often with an anti-Christian outlook, so it’s no wonder that independent Christian movies like FIREPROOF, AMAZING GRACE and BELLA tend to make so much more money.