Sam Levinson’s Assassination Nation is a searing commentary on internet culture, violence, and the male gaze. The film, which was released in 2018, centers on a group of high school girls in Salem who become the target of a malicious hacker. As their secrets are revealed to the town, the girls are subjected to increasing levels of harassment and threats of violence. Levinson expertly captures the terrifying feeling of being constantly watched and judged by the internet, and the way that this can quickly lead to real-world violence. The girls are forced to take up arms in order to survive, and the film ends with a bloody massacre. While some have criticized the film for its graphic violence, it is clear that Levinson is using this brutality to make a point about the dangers of living in an internet-obsessed society. Check out various screen facts below.
The Dade line from Hackers appears in Assassination Nation
In the 2018 film Assassination Nation, a group of high school girls become the targets of a mass internet witch hunt. At one point in the film, a window of a bedroom can be seen, and the line “Dade. I didn’t know your size, so I guessed” is heard. This line is actually from the 1995 film Hackers. In Hackers, a group of young hackers are targeted by the government after they uncover a conspiracy. Like Assassination Nation, Hackers explores the internet’s power to connect people, for better or for worse. Both films also feature realistic portrayals of hacking, which has become an increasingly prevalent issue in our internet-centric world. As such, Assassination Nation and Hackers offer valuable insights into the dangers of internet hacking and cybercrime. Both also underscore the importance of internet safety and security.
Salem comes to life in this new film
In the film, the town of Salem is turned upside down when a hacker leaks private information about its residents. What follows is a night of violence and mayhem, as the town’s citizens turn on each other in a frenzy of suspicion and paranoia. Given the film’s title, it’s no surprise that internet culture and social media play a major role in the story. However, the film also draws clear parallels between the Salem witch trials and the events of the story. Just as innocent people were persecuted during the Trials, so too are the characters in the film victimized by false accusations and mob mentality. In both cases, fear and ignorance lead to tragedy. As the film shows, history has a way of repeating itself.
Experience the teenage girl crisis
As Levinson was writing the script for Assassination Nation, he regularly sent updated drafts to the cast so they could provide input on their characters and the film’s depiction of teenage girl experiences, including those of transgender girls. Levinson made some changes to the script based on the feedback he received. The result is a film that feels urgent and relevant, offering a bracing look at how easily internet culture can turn toxic.
The festival favorite wins the top prize
Assassination Nation was included in the 2019 Film Threat Award. This competition was inspired by indie filmmaker and critic Matthew Roe, who named it one of his top films of 2018. Roe praised the movie for its unflinching exploration of topics like toxic masculinity, slut shaming, transphobia, and mob hysteria. Roe’s support helped the film get noticed by a wider audience and ultimately helped it win the top prize at the festival. The film received positive reviews from most critics, with many praising its dark humor and stylish directing.
Explores the modern state of femininity
Sam Levinson’s film Assassination Nation (2018) is a fascinating study of modern femininity, largely drawn from the real-life experiences of young women. In his script, Levinson incorporates much of the current feminist discourse he found in online posts. As a result, the film provides a unique and valuable insight into the hopes, fears, and aspirations of young women in the modern world. The film has generated considerable debate, with some viewers praising its frank portrayal of feminine rage, and others finding it gratifyingly cathartic.