Nov 8, 2011

Rant of the week!

I've been noticing something- it's becoming a trend and I don't particularly like it. You see, in many recent movies, especially the "good" ones, the artistic ones, the critically aclaimed ones, that their level of energy, of action, of story development is very low. You fill a 120 minute movie with numerous scenes of sitting in a couch, eating breakfast, walking, picking blueberries, watching the sky and so on. And I get it, sometimes it does help the story, but some just take it to the next level. I want film makers to make want to see this movies continuosly, for it to never stop, to keep me at the edge of my seat, to shock me so much that I don't know how to express myself. Old movies, like from the 50s, surprisingly enough, most of the time, do that. Even ones more recent, like Fight Club, or American History X, or even Hunger, knew that, although they dealt with delicate subjects and emotions. It makes me want to see X-Men or James Bond, at least I know what to expect.

Yes, I like the fact they are expressing- through their shots, scenes, music, images- specific emotions and it is designed to make us emote and feel the same, and maybe raise some interesting questions, but why should I see a movie about that? Why should I sit in a theater for 2 hours and watch Kirsten Dunst, for example, picking blueberries? I know what you will say- because she gives a true performance (yes, she does, I'll give you that), because the cinematography and the images are beautifully done (agreed)- but how much can you admire these shots before getting a little bit bored? How much can you contemplate about the earth, the world, the society, life, love, fear, hate, sadness and so on? You need a story and characters and action to back up those emotions, to make them feel more real and appealing to the audience. And besides that, if you are really interested in doing that, I presume you would like to sit and actually think about it, mold thing over in your head, without being obligated to watch the screen.

Some movies can have that element and still conect with the audience. There are some exceptions where very few people understand and actually try to make a movie that can be pleasant to see and understand, or at least is able to raise some hairs up your arm. Drive, Hunger, Martha Marcy May Marlene, even Take Shelter (although not completely).

After all, why do you watch a movie? Honestly, tell me! Films were first made as a hobby, they were shown as an entertainment option for people, most of them were silent comedic films, meant to gain attention, laughter, and for audience to enjoy! I, and probably a lot of other people just like me, go to movies to inmerse myself into an other world, to dream, to discover, to laugh, to be entertained, to have a higher pulse and be shocked. All of the critics say, oh, Hangover or Tron:Legacy are bad movies- no, they aren't, they just satisfy different needs, they are simple, fun, entertaining movies. We need that from time to time.
Now, I know we can't have only romcoms and action movies on screen, obviously, I am just saying this: if you want to make a movie, please think and try to make it enjoyable for a larger crowd. If you go your way and make it as artistic as possible, what can happen, you say? Well, ok, you might win a Palme D'or or get some critical recognition, but will people go to see it in cinema? will it give resources to do another one? Sometimes yes, sometimes no- very few are lucky to do that, and they are probably getting away with it because at one point in their career, they made a more relatable, enjoyable movie that allowed them to explore other things.

I want, I need more inventive, innovative, smart scriptwriters and directors. You know, the ones who know how to make it real and enjoyable, yet visually beautiful. People who go past the overartistic methods and just shows us what they mean in a simple, attractive way. Rationale, but sensitive. New and intriguing, but not boring. Those rarely show up, so don't blame me if I go watch Tintin, Hunger Games, Immortals, Hangover or Harry Potter in the meantime. The world is changing, and so are the consumers. You betta keep up with them.

Take it as it is- a rant! Maybe I have exagerated, maybe I haven't said enough, but it is still interesting to talk about! What do you think?


  1. wow quite a rant there Aziza. I am pretty sure I could hear your angry typing from down here in Brighton!!


    A good thought provoker though. Thanks for sharing

  2. yeah, I kind of regret it now!Melancholia got to me at some point- I was bored and annoyed, but by the end I forgot about it,because it was better!

  3. Probably the best thing I've seen on this blog. Do more stuff like this. You write angry well.

  4. Hmm, Alex, I don't know if I should take that as a compliment or not-best thing on the blog? Thanks :) Promise, whenever something bugs me, I will write about it:)

  5. I can understand your viewpoint but I don't necessarily agree. Now I haven't seen Melancholia yet so I can't comment on that, but some films just aren't meant to please everyone.

    Sure there are a lot of boring and cryptic movies because of this, but for me the very best films are also the ones where the artist's first concern isn't about trying to sell tickets or DVD's.

  6. @BT: I am not saying that a director should do a movie just to sell tickets or DVDs, I just want them to consider their idea and their film through the viewers eyes- just to not be selfish.

    I think your point of view is very good and I understand what you mean!

  7. I love a good thought-provoking post like this, and your rant is warranted, Aziza. I saw the much-celebrated Somewhere and it was soooooo dull and pretentious. I mean, I appreciate some quiet moments and slower movies like Hitchcock classics can be entertaining, but some directors are so overly indulgent about scenes where nothing happens and call it 'art.' Well some might be artistic yes, but a lot of the time they're just plain boring!

    I think you made a good point about filmmakers' responsibility to 'entertain' in some degree, and by being overindulgent I can see how you could characterize it as selfish. For sure I'd think twice before seeing another Sophia Coppola again after seeing Somewhere.

  8. 100% agreed on Somewhere- absolutely not worth seeing it! Marie Antoinette is slightly better, but still very Sophia Coppola, so don't try it!

  9. Wow so you are saying movies aren't finding a middle ground anymore? That they are either too artistic (Tree of Life) or too far on the entertainment side (Transformers 3)?

  10. Mr Castor, I am still trying to decipher your tone:do you agree, or not, or trying to make fun of me? :)
    I wouldn't actually say that they are not finding a middle ground, although if you think about it, that is where we are going. We keep hearing more and more each day that X film was made to be an Oscar bait. I just don't get the over exposure of the artistic films.
    You know, just take this post as it is- a rant! I was pissed off at Kirsten Dunst and the very artistic side of von Trier and that made write this. I can't even remember what exactly triggered it or what was the train of though- bad, I know!

  11. I'm not sure I agree with all of your points, but anyone who wishes for better scriptwriters is OK with me :-)