Saturday, 3 August 2013

Disgusting vs disturbing

This subject has been ranted to death by some people, but I'll have to join that long line of annoyed individuals. Every time there's lists of "the most disturbing films" or such, they're ones filled with blood, guts and shit and so on. That's not disturbing, that's disgusting. Disturbing would be, for example, if you're watching a film that seems to be a happy family comedy, but it's just creeping the shit out of you for some reason; maybe it's the way the smile, or maybe they casually cook human bodyparts like it's the norm, it could be that one of them has their face the wrong way, or maybe the plot focuses on a legless kid who's strapped himself on a pair of dogs to move. Or maybe you have no clue what the hell is going on, but it's fucking your mind up and traumatising you forever.

It should be pretty straight-forward to remember the rules of thumb:
If it makes you wanna roll over and puke, it's disgusting.
If it makes you wanna crawl up in a ball, it's disturbing

So why do so many people, including professional film/literary/etc. critics keep getting it mixed up? It could be because they do go hand in hand quite a lot of the time, but what everyone should always remember is that they've never been mutually exclusive; they're easily paired and combined, but they're not synonyms.

I mean, it's not like I have anything against people using words incorrectly so long as there's a reason for it, but I just don't understand the reason being following in famous, influential people's footsteps in this kind of things.

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