Pain & Gain is an upcoming movie from Paramount Pictures that fictionalizes the true story of a gang of bodybuilders from Miami, FL — The Sun-Gym Gang — that kidnapped, tortured, and attempted to murder a man — Mark Schiller — and then proceeded to successfully murder two other people, dismembering their bodies afterward to better hide them.
This all happened in 1984. Most of the relatives of the victims (including Mark Schiller himself) are still alive.
Have I mentioned that the story is being adapted into an action-comedy and will be directed by Michael Bay? Michael Bay???
The psychotic killers behind those horrendous crimes are apparently being depicted as two down-on-their-luck, smart-alecky bros who want nothing but a crack at success, and their victim as a womanizing pig who's got what's coming to him.
This seems like one of those baffling cases where no one picked up on the obvious questions to be raised about such an endeavor. It's like a giant rat accidentally got trapped in a bottle of soda in the early stages of processing, and that same bottle of soda went through all of the health and safety checks, was directly sampled from by about ten different people, and no one noticed there was a rat in it!
To the surprise of everyone who doesn't exist, the victims are furious. And rightly so.
The tastelessness of such a project reaches comedic proportions. I would sort of comprehend if the film was being helmed by the Cohen Brothers in a style similar to Burn After Reading, where the tragedy of the events isn't hampered by the humorous tone, but this is Michael Bay we're talking about here. The guy who wouldn't recognize subtlety if it was pig-blapping him while yelling “I'M SUBTLETY!”
And the movie is chock-full of talented actors, to make matters even more puzzling. Ed Harris is in it. Tony Shallhoub is in it. These are all people who always struck me as intelligent, or at least not so unbelievably stupid that they would agree to participate in such a misguided project.
Where were all the rhesus monkeys to point out to those involved in the movie that the end result might prove to be distasteful and insensitive to the real-life victims of the real-life crime? Were were all the unborn fetuses to bring up the possibility that it might not be a good idea to ridicule the traumatized victims and relatives that are still trying to recover from a gruesome incident that happened 30 years ago?
You've failed us, rhesus monkeys. You've failed us, fetuses. Shame on you.