Tuesday, July 25, 2006

the extremely un-joyful life of the average movie critic

work is a little slow today. hooray, internet to the rescue! i looked up other movie reviews on lady in the water. i mentioned that i read one already, but i remembered a site that my friends always bug me about that i've never really cared to visit, rottentomatoes.com. lady in the water was right there on the homepage! i clicked the "reviews" button and looked through about 40 articles.

wow. people really hated this movie! the first review i read was kind in comparison.

almost every quote from the articles listed said things about how slow and tedious and self-worshipping and ridiculous the movie was. they attacked everything from holes in the plot (i mean come on, the story is about like an ocean girl and a dog thing and evil tree monkeys and an eagle... of course it's not probable) to the lines themselves. one person said shyamalan needs a new writer. i don't know if this critic knew that shyamalan IS his own writer, but either way, i thought the lines were very good, and duh you have to sort of press your "i believe" button about the plot, but don't you have to do that for all m. night shyamalan films?

the more i think about this, the more i think that if shyamalan was shamelessly attacking movie critics, he's completely justified in doing so.

the whole point of the film is that sometimes stuff is bizarre and silly and "has huge plot holes," but that you can believe anyway. you want to believe. isn't that the point of all his movies? believe in things you can't see? believe that the kid really can see dead people or that you could be a superhero or the kids might be right about the alien invasion?

is it cool to not like movies or something? do critics think they can only be credible if they pick out all the bad parts? just what the heck are they waiting for, anyway? are they looking for a movie that is totally flawless on every level that appeals to all audiences? no wonder they are cranky.

if you're thinking i'm being a hypocrite, well, maybe i am. my friends tell me that i'm more critical of movies than most people out there. usually it's because i just don't care about the characters. i didn't care about riddik very much, and i REALLY didn't care about whoever tom cruise was playing in that self-pitying samurai movie.

i'm thinking i shouldn't do that anymore. movies are meant for entertainment, not for someone to pick apart the logical gaps in the story or to think nasty thoughts about the director. i don't want to get to the point that i can't enjoy any movie, no matter how great it actually is, because i'm so focused on the parts that i didn't like. i really think everyone could benefit from just going to a movie for the sake of having fun. do critics attack children's movies? does anyone say, "oh yeah right, a talking fish! this is stupid!" i tend to think they don't. because kids aren't so picky. maybe we should go into every movie with the same expectations we have when going to see a movie for little kids.

i am so glad i didn't know anything about lady in the water before i saw it in the theater. i think i may be the only person in the world who actually enjoyed it because of that.

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