Saturday, May 1, 2010

And Now...Back to the Show...

Wow...It's been 2 weeks since a movie post...I will start one and work on it over the course of a week.  I wish I could pump them out in more of a breaking news fashion, but once I start going, I spiral around and usually out of control a bit.  For now, I am going to re-post a Facebook convo from a few weeks ago debating movie critcism.

More recent movie talk, coming soon!  Enjoy...

Ryan M. Rezzelle: QUESTION: Should movie critics lighten up a bit and go a little easier on movies? I like more movies than your average bear, but when I watch a movie, I don't just watch it at its face, I also think about how many people really cared about putting together something that is truely entertaining. Movies should be fun and... if you have an uber-critical persective when you watch it, you set yourself up to be let down. 

Daniel Schmer: I agree movies should be entertaining and I know I am easily entertained. While I don't think critics need to lighten up, each to their own but I would like a true movie fans point of view. Maybe I found a retirement job.

April Doin: Ryan, I've actually had this conversation with a friend of mine who is a movie critic. He is less harsh than many of them, and seems to appreciate the entertainment value of movies. Not every movie is Shindler's List, some are just meant to be light and fun, those count for a lot too, imho...

Dennis Doms: Most people who comment on movies are "reviewers". Their objective is to make personal observations on the content of the movie and relate whether or not they feel like others will find it enjoyable or not. Which is what most people want to know, but...

A critic's job is to use knowledge to unapologetically dissect the "perfection" of a movie as a... See More form. That's a much different objective and task. It starts with a presumption that movies are important and must be held to a standard to be considered "good". That doesn't necessarily have to be a dramatic standard (something can be a comedy and not necessarily impactful on other levels, but still well done).

No, I don't think critics should "lighten up". I don't think I've witnessed many good crticial analyses of movies over the years. Criticism should be unrelenting in it's scope and allow no quarter -- if that's the intent. If the intent is to be a reviewer, then it doesn't have to be held to the same goal. I don't feel bad about a reviewer recommending something I might find insipid because it's a matter of their "gut" reaction. I do get irritated by critics who rate things inanely because they don't know the material or choose to ignore their task to be ruthlessly analytical because they prefer to justify a personal preference.

Dustin Calvin via Joanne Calvin's Account: Stop over analizing it!! We only live once!! DC

Ryan M. Rezzelle: DC, get your own damn acct. I friended Joanne so SHE and I could communicate. Either that, or just be nicer next post! You know how sensative I am (sniff sniff).

Michael Schmer: I agree. Most of the time when I say a movie "looks terrible" it's because I'm not the target audience or it's just something I have no interest in i.e. G-Force or whatever the latest Miley Cyrus opus is. The only time I am truly critical of movies is when it utterly fails at what it tries to be...Brooklyn's Finest comes to mind.

Ryan M. Rezzelle: Dennis, I agree! In fact, I think that is a great point....9 out of every 10 "critics," are more reviewers than critics. They give their "criticism" of film based on their opinion and not a true analysis of the art.

FROM WIKIPEDIA (so it must be true!): It has been claimed that journalist film critics should only be known as film reviewers, and that true film critics are those who take an academic approach to films.

Ryan M. Rezzelle: April, who is your movie critic friend? I would like to check out his work.

Sean Paul Murphy: Here's the problem. Every ten years a new generation passes through its prime movie-going years. They are learning the genres and conventions for the first time. They see "American Pie" and think it's so great and clever. The critic, on the other hand, has seen this cycle a few times and to him, "American Pie" is just a retread of "Porkys." ... See MoreThere's nothing new or exciting in it for him. The audience is excited to see a genre film play within its conventions. The critic wants something that bends the conventions because he's seen it all before. On of the reasons I enjoyed reading Ebert was because he says seemed to maintain a love of movies. He didn't get as cynical as many "important" critics.

Ryan M. Rezzelle: I agree with you as well...Ebert does love movies which is also why I follow him more than a variety of other traditional critics. Do you think Porky's was the first (or in the era of the first) teen sex romp comedies? I think it is more than just a generational cycle of movie watchers, but also of the actors and movies themselves. I ... See Morerecognize that Porky's is quality teen sex romp for its era, but as a 22 year old in 1999, I related to those actors and that music more than I ever did Porky's. Some movies, though, are timeless. Casablanca, The Godfather, Star Wars....these are great regardless of generation....well as least as far as I see it. Good discussion....I love it!

Sean Paul Murphy: True, Ryan. That's my point. Porky's was not the first nor will American Pie be the last. The question is how you will react to their equivalent in 2023. A true critic has to be able to look at these films with a fresh eye. There are many timeless films, but, if you're a critic, you can't wait for one of them to come along to bring joy to ... See Moreyour movie-going experience. They are few and far between. You have to find something to enjoy in the normal programmers. Here's another question: Did any timeless films arrive in 2009?

Well I did answer this question, but this is a string for another day...till next time....


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