Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

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Wooley
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Wooley » Wed May 20, 2020 8:41 pm

Takoma1 wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 4:27 pm
It is incredibly superficial, but I really enjoyed it in the theater. It's the cinematic equivalent of a piece of candy corn, but I dug it on that level.
Exactly.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by crumbsroom » Wed May 20, 2020 8:48 pm

I'll take it as a victory for civilization there has yet to be a full throated defense of this one.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Takoma1 » Wed May 20, 2020 9:06 pm

crumbsroom wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 8:48 pm
I'll take it as a victory for civilization there has yet to be a full throated defense of this one.
I don't think it's defensible as great art or something profound.

I do think it's defensible as a popcorn summer flick, which is how I saw it. Everyone in the theater had a good time.

Yours is the first overtly negative opinion I can recall hearing about it. Everyone else has ranged from "meh" to really liking it.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Slentert » Wed May 20, 2020 9:41 pm

I'm in the "meh" camp myself.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by crumbsroom » Wed May 20, 2020 9:43 pm

Takoma1 wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 9:06 pm

Yours is the first overtly negative opinion I can recall hearing about it. Everyone else has ranged from "meh" to really liking it.
Now I'm back to despair.

It's hard to define where I would lay my notion of easy going popcorn summer flick. It's probably nowhere, because everytime I hear that term, it is always in deference to a movie that rankles me.

This isn't to say I'm against empty enjoyment of a film. I would argue most of my enjoyment of most films is essentially empty. I'm rarely looking for any higher meaning. But I take particular umbrage at things that feel as if they don't transcend in their enthusiasm yet keep dancing as if this should be enough for me. When everything seems so cynically calculated to entertain. I don't like a film panting for my attention. It gets on my nerves.

But that isn't everything. I thought the performances were almost uniformly bad. The dialogue consistently terrible. And then I read the reviews and....*collapses in the middle of the street sobbing*
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by crumbsroom » Wed May 20, 2020 9:43 pm

Slentert wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 9:41 pm
I'm in the "meh" camp myself.
Watch it again, and get angrier.

My army needs more of you.

You can do it.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by ThatDarnMKS » Wed May 20, 2020 9:55 pm

Baby Driver is solid. Extremely well crafted. A movie that finely edited and shot cannot be a piece of shit. You’re goddamn wrong. Make a movie.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by ThatDarnMKS » Wed May 20, 2020 9:57 pm

crumbsroom wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 9:43 pm
Watch it again, and get angrier.

My army needs more of you.

You can do it.
He’ll watch it again and like it more. Then find himself popping it on for the gloriously complex editing and cinematography operating in harmony. And Lilly James.

You’re basically a monster, crummy.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Jinnistan » Wed May 20, 2020 10:32 pm

ThatDarnMKS wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 9:57 pm
And Lilly James.
That's 'Lily', or Ms. James to you, and it's always infuriating when a film wastes a fine talent with strained chemistry.

Unfortunately, Lily has had Gemma Arterton-level bad (agent) luck with a string of films that have wasted her talent. Hopefully her remake of Rebecca will finally liberate the inner Joan Fontaine that I believe is in her strawberry charm.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Jinnistan » Wed May 20, 2020 10:38 pm

crumbsroom wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 7:43 pm
At least it was kind of nice to hate a movie as purely as this. It's been awhile.
The Pet Sematary remake will boil your soul.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by crumbsroom » Wed May 20, 2020 10:44 pm

ThatDarnMKS wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 9:55 pm
Baby Driver is solid. Extremely well crafted. A movie that finely edited and shot cannot be a piece of shit. You’re goddamn wrong. Make a movie.
Of course something finely edited and shot can be a piece of shit. The world is littered with such things. Almost anything can have its good elements. You can compliment those things in isolation (and I'm not sure how much I would compliment them here), but if all they are in service of is whatever this pandering monstrosity was, no thanks.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Jinnistan » Wed May 20, 2020 10:49 pm

Reminds me of the ongoing discussion elsewhere about how Elon Musk can be intelligent but still a practical idiot about so many things. A well-engineered film can still be stupid.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by MrCarmady » Wed May 20, 2020 10:51 pm

Enjoying seeing seething hatred for Baby Driver, a film I really dug in the cinema and haven't thought about at all, since. I do love Edgar Wright's Hot Fuzz, Spaced, and Scott Pilgrim, so it's a bit different if that guy at the party is a bit of a tool but he's your mate and you know he's alright, really, but I can see how the shtick could grate. The World's End wasn't all that, either, but I like how the guy genuinely seems like a cinephile and a lover of music, and it shines through in the film for me.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Takoma1 » Wed May 20, 2020 10:54 pm

MrCarmady wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 10:51 pm
a film I really dug in the cinema and haven't thought about at all, since.
This exactly captures my experience with the film.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by ThatDarnMKS » Wed May 20, 2020 11:28 pm

crumbsroom wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 10:44 pm
Of course something finely edited and shot can be a piece of shit. The world is littered with such things. Almost anything can have its good elements. You can compliment those things in isolation (and I'm not sure how much I would compliment them here), but if all they are in service of is whatever this pandering monstrosity was, no thanks.
When the entire essence and purpose of the film is built around the complex synchronization of the mechanics of editing to music, it’s more than a “good element.”

And who cares more about narrative than craft after 2,000 or so films?
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by ThatDarnMKS » Wed May 20, 2020 11:29 pm

Jinnistan wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 10:49 pm
Reminds me of the ongoing discussion elsewhere about how Elon Musk can be intelligent but still a practical idiot about so many things. A well-engineered film can still be stupid.
False equivalency alert. Sound the alarms!
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Jinnistan » Thu May 21, 2020 12:04 am

ThatDarnMKS wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 11:29 pm
False equivalency alert. Sound the alarms!
I figured that even a Michael Bay fan could admit that he makes pretty stupid movies.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Wooley » Thu May 21, 2020 12:05 am

crumbsroom wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 9:43 pm
Now I'm back to despair.

It's hard to define where I would lay my notion of easy going popcorn summer flick. It's probably nowhere, because everytime I hear that term, it is always in deference to a movie that rankles me.

This isn't to say I'm against empty enjoyment of a film. I would argue most of my enjoyment of most films is essentially empty. I'm rarely looking for any higher meaning. But I take particular umbrage at things that feel as if they don't transcend in their enthusiasm yet keep dancing as if this should be enough for me. When everything seems so cynically calculated to entertain. I don't like a film panting for my attention. It gets on my nerves.

But that isn't everything. I thought the performances were almost uniformly bad. The dialogue consistently terrible. And then I read the reviews and....*collapses in the middle of the street sobbing*
Now that actually surprises me. I hate Jamie Foxx, but I sure thought he was peaking in this, absolutely at his best, I really liked the performance from Spacey as well. I liked Gonzalez. Shit, I thought everybody but maybe Hamm really did a great job and were the biggest reason the movie had such good flow, which it did.
Yeah, man, I didn't have any issue with the dialogue for the tone that the movie was setting... I'mmm just not feelin' ya on this.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by ThatDarnMKS » Thu May 21, 2020 12:14 am

Jinnistan wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 12:04 am
I figured that even a Michael Bay fan could admit that he makes pretty stupid movies.
I wouldn’t have argued with stupid. Piece of shit carries a different connotation of valueless. That’s what I took issue with.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by ThatDarnMKS » Thu May 21, 2020 12:16 am

Wooley wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 12:05 am
Now that actually surprises me. I hate Jamie Foxx, but I sure thought he was peaking in this, absolutely at his best, I really liked the performance from Spacey as well. I liked Gonzalez. Shit, I thought everybody but maybe Hamm really did a great job and were the biggest reason the movie had such good flow, which it did.
Yeah, man, I didn't have any issue with the dialogue for the tone that the movie was setting... I'mmm just not feelin' ya on this.
It’s cuz he’s wrong, Wools. And you’re right about this one. It’s a good look on you. You should try it on the Final Terror!

Just when you thought you were out... I PULLED YOU BACK IN!
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Torgo » Thu May 21, 2020 12:17 am

Someone in here needs to put on their...
..Bellbottoms!
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Wooley » Thu May 21, 2020 12:24 am

ThatDarnMKS wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 12:16 am
It’s cuz he’s wrong, Wools. And you’re right about this one. It’s a good look on you. You should try it on the Final Terror!

Just when you thought you were out... I PULLED YOU BACK IN!
Ha!
Honestly, I just can't even argue about TFT anymore.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by ThatDarnMKS » Thu May 21, 2020 12:26 am

Wooley wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 12:24 am
Ha!
Honestly, I just can't even argue about TFT anymore.
As long as we agree this scene from Baby Driver renders all of Crummy’s complaints moot, it’s all good:

[youtube] https://youtu.be/PhbcgOEuF_s[/youtube]
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Ergill » Thu May 21, 2020 3:41 am

ThatDarnMKS wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 12:26 am
As long as we agree this scene from Baby Driver renders all of Crummy’s complaints moot, it’s all good:

[youtube] https://youtu.be/PhbcgOEuF_s[/youtube]
It was a balls-out experience at the theater for me. Front row, seat back. Everything is picture-and-pitch-perfect, synced-to-the-beat, but it's also essentially a musical, so I'm fine with that. Does it have any bite or substance to it? It does not.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by ThatDarnMKS » Thu May 21, 2020 3:53 am

Ergill wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 3:41 am
It was a balls-out experience at the theater for me. Front row, seat back. Everything is picture-and-pitch-perfect, synced-to-the-beat, but it's also essentially a musical, so I'm fine with that. Does it have any bite or substance to it? It does not.
Does it need “substance” when the joy of the style is the point? It does not.

Also, keep your balls in at the theater. Don’t want to pull a Fred Willard (RIP)
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by crumbsroom » Thu May 21, 2020 12:39 pm

ThatDarnMKS wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 3:53 am
Does it need “substance” when the joy of the style is the point? It does not.

Also, keep your balls in at the theater. Don’t want to pull a Fred Willard (RIP)
Yes, because I'm clearly Mr. Substance here.

I found no joy in the films style, and if we are making an argument for style over substance, that's going to be a bit of a problem I'd imagine. There is a difference to me between joy that runs deep through the film and joy that feels as a fizzy front to what is essentially a workmanlike effort where you can sense the nuts and bolts. Like a smile that doesn't show in the eyes. Just because a film decides to put on a big joyous act for the camera, doesn't immediately grant it that pass in this viewer. You can also have the same effect in an action film, where technically lots is still happening on screen, but it all still manages to remain inert. You need more than simple bluster. And if you're going to rely on some kind of show biz magic to pull you through, you've got to hope it shows up. It doesn't for Wright here, a guy who had comedic magic to spare in his Cornetto trilogy

Was it the editing that was the main problem with me for this? No, I suppose that was fine enough. It had to work against the dead weight of the script, the acting and not to mention the albatross of phony emotion it slung over the neck of the film (which is where my deep hate started the rot). For the film to have been edited into worthiness against all of this it would have had to be something special. Not something complex (complexity has its place, but it is not a virtue on its own). Not simply working in sync with the music (there are some pretty unremarkable music videos that manage this quite well). Something special. And it wasn't. The joy of most musicals contain an element of weightlessness. This movie had all the weightlessness of Chicago with cement shoes.

I also wasn't even all too impressed with how it used music. Aside from choosing Neat Neat Neat for one of the heists, a brief and rare moment where the film had any kind of moxy for me, I found nothing much inspired about the vast majority of the choices for soundtrack. They were fine. But nothing that got my jaded attention.

As for Jamie Foxx, mentioned by Wooley above, I would give him marks for going unscathed through this. I'm also not a great fan of his, but I found he worked in the film. The only actor to do so here. Hamm and Spacey, who I'm usually a fan of both, were dreadful. And the less said about Anton Spigot, or whatever the fuck his name is, the better. You can't mime playing a saxophone to any kind of transcendence, you boob, so find something better in your aresenal of happy dances. Moving between mope and obnoxiously hamming it up for the camera, is not a look I'm much interested in.

So on the total shit meter, the standings so far.....(drum roll)

The Amityville Horror>>>>>>>>>>>>The Conjuring>>>>>BabyDriver
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by crumbsroom » Thu May 21, 2020 1:14 pm

ThatDarnMKS wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 12:16 am
It’s cuz he’s wrong, Wools.
What a beautiful hill to die on.

THIS has always been the way I wanted to go.

It's cozy up here
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by crumbsroom » Thu May 21, 2020 1:28 pm

ThatDarnMKS wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 9:55 pm
Make a movie.
Apparently you haven't seen the worldwide smash masterpiece "Rambling Man"

My motherfucking twelve year old self could edit in camera, beeeoootch.

:rotten: :rotten: :rotten:
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Captain Terror » Thu May 21, 2020 1:59 pm

ThatDarnMKS wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 12:26 am
As long as we agree this scene from Baby Driver renders all of Crummy’s complaints moot, it’s all good:

[youtube] https://youtu.be/PhbcgOEuF_s[/youtube]
Sheesh, that was WAY more annoying than I remembered. My lingering impression of Baby Driver was one of disappointment, but not outright hatred. That clip could change my mind though. It's a wonder I stuck around for the rest of the film after that. Sheesh.

YES, it's filmed "well" but that doesn't mean the guy I'm supposed to root for isn't a total dillweed.
crumbsroom wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 12:39 pm
I also wasn't even all too impressed with how it used music. Aside from choosing Neat Neat Neat for one of the heists, a brief and rare moment where the film had any kind of moxy for me, I found nothing much inspired about the vast majority of the choices for soundtrack. They were fine. But nothing that got my jaded attention.
Same. Before watching the film I'd come across a list of the songs that were in it and based on that I imagined a much cooler film than we got. A car chase set to "Hocus Pocus"? Sign me the bleep up. I was willing to enjoy it just on that level alone, but it kind of failed for me there. I don't even remember how Hocus Pocus was used, but it wasn't as awesome as it could have been.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by crumbsroom » Thu May 21, 2020 2:05 pm

Captain Terror wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 1:59 pm
Sheesh, that was WAY more annoying than I remembered. My lingering impression of Baby Driver was one of disappointment, but not outright hatred. That clip could change my mind though. It's a wonder I stuck around for the rest of the film after that. Sheesh.

YES, it's filmed "well" but that doesn't mean the guy I'm supposed to root for isn't a total dillweed.


Same. Before watching the film I'd come across a list of the songs that were in it and based on that I imagined a much cooler film than we got. A car chase set to "Hocus Pocus"? Sign me the bleep up. I was willing to enjoy it just on that level alone, but it kind of failed for me there. I don't even remember how Hocus Pocus was used, but it wasn't as awesome as it could have been.
Exaaaaaaaaaaaaaaactly!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Captain Terror » Thu May 21, 2020 2:54 pm

crumbsroom wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 12:39 pm
The Amityville Horror>>>>>>>>>>>>The Conjuring>>>>>BabyDriver
I'm gonna go with-

Burnt Offerings>>>>>>>>>>>>BabyDriver>>>>>The Wan-Verse

I need to rewatch Amityville before I make any judgments.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Slentert » Thu May 21, 2020 2:55 pm

crumbsroom wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 12:39 pm
Yes, because I'm clearly Mr. Substance here.

I found no joy in the films style, and if we are making an argument for style over substance, that's going to be a bit of a problem I'd imagine. There is a difference to me between joy that runs deep through the film and joy that feels as a fizzy front to what is essentially a workmanlike effort where you can sense the nuts and bolts. Like a smile that doesn't show in the eyes. Just because a film decides to put on a big joyous act for the camera, doesn't immediately grant it that pass in this viewer. You can also have the same effect in an action film, where technically lots is still happening on screen, but it all still manages to remain inert. You need more than simple bluster. And if you're going to rely on some kind of show biz magic to pull you through, you've got to hope it shows up. It doesn't for Wright here, a guy who had comedic magic to spare in his Cornetto trilogy

Was it the editing that was the main problem with me for this? No, I suppose that was fine enough. It had to work against the dead weight of the script, the acting and not to mention the albatross of phony emotion it slung over the neck of the film (which is where my deep hate started the rot). For the film to have been edited into worthiness against all of this it would have had to be something special. Not something complex (complexity has its place, but it is not a virtue on its own). Not simply working in sync with the music (there are some pretty unremarkable music videos that manage this quite well). Something special. And it wasn't. The joy of most musicals contain an element of weightlessness. This movie had all the weightlessness of Chicago with cement shoes.

I also wasn't even all too impressed with how it used music. Aside from choosing Neat Neat Neat for one of the heists, a brief and rare moment where the film had any kind of moxy for me, I found nothing much inspired about the vast majority of the choices for soundtrack. They were fine. But nothing that got my jaded attention.

As for Jamie Foxx, mentioned by Wooley above, I would give him marks for going unscathed through this. I'm also not a great fan of his, but I found he worked in the film. The only actor to do so here. Hamm and Spacey, who I'm usually a fan of both, were dreadful. And the less said about Anton Spigot, or whatever the fuck his name is, the better. You can't mime playing a saxophone to any kind of transcendence, you boob, so find something better in your aresenal of happy dances. Moving between mope and obnoxiously hamming it up for the camera, is not a look I'm much interested in.
I actually agree with all of this. Still don't hate the movie though, but I rather not rewatch it ever again.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Captain Terror » Thu May 21, 2020 3:03 pm

Aaaand it appears that the first four Amityville films are all available for me to stream for free.
Jesus, I'm gonna watch all 4, aren't I? :roll:
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by crumbsroom » Thu May 21, 2020 3:15 pm

Captain Terror wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 2:54 pm
I'm gonna go with-

Burnt Offerings>>>>>>>>>>>>BabyDriver>>>>>The Wan-Verse

I need to rewatch Amityville before I make any judgments.
I think Burnt Offerings is a fair equivalent to whatever The Amityville Horror is. Essentially 70's horror movies, which while well known enough to be considered staples, would probably underwhelm and/or bore the shit out of most audiences. And it's hard to argue against that reaction.

For the record, I like being bored by both.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by crumbsroom » Thu May 21, 2020 3:16 pm

Captain Terror wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 3:03 pm
Aaaand it appears that the first four Amityville films are all available for me to stream for free.
Jesus, I'm gonna watch all 4, aren't I? :roll:
Ooof.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by crumbsroom » Thu May 21, 2020 3:27 pm

Slentert wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 2:55 pm
I actually agree with all of this. Still don't hate the movie though, but I rather not rewatch it ever again.
FTR I'm not invested in anyone taking my lead in hating it. This is just a place for my bile, and I couldn't actually care less if I'm the only one that despises it. I like lots of stuff everyone should hate, and I'm not about to turn my opinion around on any of those movies anytime soon. It's never wrong to like anything even if it does happen to cause some people to swat their head in disbelief.

If there is ever any target with me (and this is pretty much always the case with anything I rail against) its in the homogeneity of critics who I personally feel are prone to uniformly lap up the same shit all the time. Critics and their mindmeld opinions are the enemy, because they are getting paid to have reflexively dull opinions, and do so with staggering consistency. Their opinions feel too safe, too often, and I'm skeptical of what their actual function is anymore, outside of hedging bets on what is likely to be the easiest films for a general audience to accept. The same stink seems to always exists on all of these films, lots of competency, little poetry, no challenge and a universally crowd pleasing effect that almost immediately evaporates once outside of the films immediately proximity.

As I feel with The Conjuring, I'll be patient in waiting a couple of decades to see exactly how well either of them pan out of the ages.

We'll see whose victorious!!!!!!!!!!
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Popcorn Reviews » Thu May 21, 2020 3:54 pm

crumbsroom wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 3:27 pm
If there is ever any target with me (and this is pretty much always the case with anything I rail against) its in the homogeneity of critics who I personally feel are prone to uniformly lap up the same shit all the time. Critics and their mindmeld opinions are the enemy, because they are getting paid to have reflexively dull opinions, and do so with staggering consistency. Their opinions feel too safe, too often, and I'm skeptical of what their actual function is anymore, outside of hedging bets on what is likely to be the easiest films for a general audience to accept. The same stink seems to always exists on all of these films, lots of competency, little poetry, no challenge and a universally crowd pleasing effect that almost immediately evaporates once outside of the films immediately proximity.
I may be misinterpreting this paragraph, but it strikes me as kind of one-sided. I'm sure there's many intelligent, well-informed people out there who have great, well-thought out reasons for enjoying this film who aren't just lapping up the same, universally crowd-pleasing thing. I feel like it's a bit of straw manning to dismiss the positive reception for this film as such. You might just be referring to some or most of the critics, but the last sentence confuses me a bit.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by crumbsroom » Thu May 21, 2020 4:24 pm

Popcorn Reviews wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 3:54 pm
I may be misinterpreting this paragraph, but it strikes me as kind of one-sided. I'm sure there's many intelligent, well-informed people out there who have great, well-thought out reasons for enjoying this film who aren't just lapping up the same, universally crowd-pleasing thing. I feel like it's a bit of straw manning to dismiss most of the positive reception for this film as such. You might just be referring to the critics, but the last sentence confuses me a bit.
It's no one particular critic. It is the culture of critics. It is what their function has seemed to become. A movie like Baby Driver is, for the most part, going to be a crowd pleaser. The critic now mostly relays this information back to the potential consumer (the audience) letting them know it is a safe bet for their 20 bucks. There is rarely and thoughtful writing about a film like this, and there is certainly rarely any antagonism. Why? Because the former isn't a requisite, and the later could have the critic branded as unreliable to the readership. The days of confrontational writing about a film hardly exists now. I almost miss Armond White, even though he was both a clown and a troll. Both positive and negative reviews are entirely predictable, both in their content and their verdict. Competently enough made and easy to digest popcorn films are generally going to rate across the board highly (and in fairness, for good reason), with virutally identical things written about them from review to review. This goes for popcorn films I hate (fucking Babydriver) and ones I like. I find it an equally frustrating when even the films I like aren't legitimately challenged. I don't have any interest in any criticism that functions as something to just confirm what I already think (unless it happens to be a film that has no respect). Just tell me something. Engage with me. Butt heads, you weak kneed jelly gut charlatans. I'd like criticism to be an actual art form, with strong view points and individualistic takes. Not making a list of generic points any half wit could also make after wandering out of the theater into the light of day. And then to get paid for it......that's when the..... flaaaames....on the side of my faaace.

In short, as much as I hate Babydriver, Edgar Wright did his job. People like his film. Good for him, even though I'd like to kick in in the gnads for this one. But did the critics do theirs? Not unless parroting back these sentiments is all they are required to do. Now, sure, you could argue they all liked it exactly as they claimed. They very possibly did. But the bulk of writing out their hardly challenges this assumption. It's all lazy boiler plate fluff. So, no, I don't have any faith in the work of critics, and I don't think they are doing their job. At least not the job I think they should be doing. Which is thinking and writing.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Popcorn Reviews » Thu May 21, 2020 4:43 pm

crumbsroom wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 4:24 pm
It's no one particular critic. It is the culture of critics. It is what their function has seemed to become. A movie like Baby Driver is, for the most part, going to be a crowd pleaser. The critic now mostly relays this information back to the potential consumer (the audience) letting them know it is a safe bet for their 20 bucks. There is rarely and thoughtful writing about a film like this, and there is certainly rarely any antagonism. Why? Because the former isn't a requisite, and the later could have the critic branded as unreliable to the readership. The days of confrontational writing about a film hardly exists now. I almost miss Armond White, even though he was both a clown and a troll. Both positive and negative reviews are entirely predictable, both in their content and their verdict. Competently enough made and easy to digest popcorn films are generally going to rate across the board highly (and in fairness, for good reason), with virutally identical things written about them from review to review. This goes for popcorn films I hate (fucking Babydriver) and ones I like. I find it an equally frustrating when even the films I like aren't legitimately challenged. I don't have any interest in any criticism that functions as something to just confirm what I already think (unless it happens to be a film that has no respect). Just tell me something. Engage with me. Butt heads, you weak kneed jelly gut charlatans. I'd like criticism to be an actual art form, with strong view points and individualistic takes. Not making a list of generic points any half wit could also make after wandering out of the theater into the light of day. And then to get paid for it......that's when the..... flaaaames....on the side of my faaace.

In short, as much as I hate Babydriver, Edgar Wright did his job. People like his film. Good for him, even though I'd like to kick in in the gnads for this one. But did the critics do theirs? Not unless parroting back these sentiments is all they are required to do. Now, sure, you could argue they all liked it exactly as they claimed. They very possibly did. But the bulk of writing out their hardly challenges this assumption. It's all lazy boiler plate fluff. So, no, I don't have any faith in the work of critics, and I don't think they are doing their job. At least not the job I think they should be doing. Which is thinking and writing.
Okay, that's fair. I was just confused by the word "universally" as, since it typically means all, I wasn't sure if you were implying that everyone who liked this film were lapping up the same shit or if you weren't intending to go any farther than the critics. But yeah, I can agree with you on the critics. Well, maybe not all, but yeah, most tend to do what you described for crowd pleasers.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by crumbsroom » Thu May 21, 2020 4:59 pm

Popcorn Reviews wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 4:43 pm
Okay, that's fair. I was just confused by the word "universally" as, since it typically means all, I wasn't sure if you were implying that everyone who liked this film were lapping up the same shit or if you weren't intending to go any farther than the critics. But yeah, I can agree with you on the critics. Well, maybe not all, but yeah, most tend to do what you described for crowd pleasers.
I was speaking of a 'universal crowd pleasing effect that immediately evaporates when one leaves the cinema'

A sense that most seem to echo here as their experience. And, even if this is all cool by those who liked the movie, it can't help but speak to how the film may be inherently missing something. Even empty entertainment has the option of providing something that at least lingers a little.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by ThatDarnMKS » Thu May 21, 2020 5:01 pm

crumbsroom wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 3:27 pm


As I feel with The Conjuring, I'll be patient in waiting a couple of decades to see exactly how well either of them pan out of the ages.

We'll see whose victorious!!!!!!!!!!
As with the Conjuring, most of your complaints fall to tone and narrative with a complete disregard for craft. Hence why my first post had the flippant “make a movie” remark. Not that I think one needs to do so in order to assess films but I do think many viewers and critics come from a place of ignorance as to just how difficult pulling off a fraction of the visual and editing gags in one scene of Baby Driver is. There’s a reason not just critics but tons of filmmakers jumped in to shout the film’s praises.

Ironically, Baby Driver is my least favorite film by Wright and I think he needs someone like Pegg to balance out his tendencies and iron out the perfunctory narrative ideas he has to get to this exquisite gags and visual opulence.

So if the previous post was digging in the heels saying “Everything about it sucked and was at best okay” then I’m similarly digging in my heels saying “if you can’t appreciate the craft on display, you don’t appreciate craft in film.”
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Popcorn Reviews » Thu May 21, 2020 5:05 pm

crumbsroom wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 4:59 pm
I was speaking of a 'universal crowd pleasing effect that immediately evaporates when one leaves the cinema'

A sense that most seem to echo here as their experience. And, even if this is all cool by those who liked the movie, it can't help but speak to how the film may be inherently missing something. Even empty entertainment has the option of providing something that at least lingers a little.
Okay, point taken. I may have read your post a bit too fast. Sorry about that.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by crumbsroom » Thu May 21, 2020 5:28 pm

ThatDarnMKS wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 5:01 pm
As with the Conjuring, most of your complaints fall to tone and narrative with a complete disregard for craft. Hence why my first post had the flippant “make a movie” remark. Not that I think one needs to do so in order to assess films but I do think many viewers and critics come from a place of ignorance as to just how difficult pulling off a fraction of the visual and editing gags in one scene of Baby Driver is. There’s a reason not just critics but tons of filmmakers jumped in to shout the film’s praises.

Ironically, Baby Driver is my least favorite film by Wright and I think he needs someone like Pegg to balance out his tendencies and iron out the perfunctory narrative ideas he has to get to this exquisite gags and visual opulence.

So if the previous post was digging in the heels saying “Everything about it sucked and was at best okay” then I’m similarly digging in my heels saying “if you can’t appreciate the craft on display, you don’t appreciate craft in film.”
It's not that I don't care about technical ability or craft, I just don't care within the context of the film. Rarely at all. If I am presented with a shot or an edited sequence from, let's say The Conjuring, and see all of the difficulties that have to be surmounted to achieve its effortlessness, I have no problem saying good job. How this changes how I feel about the film is completely negligible though. It's still at best a mediocre film, even if the entirety of the thing turns out to be a technical marvel. The strings on those efforts have been hidden well enough that they do not qualify in my viewing of the film. And why should they really. They went through all of these titanic efforts for what purpose, if what they end up creating is entirely uninspiring except on that layman level.

Now there are rare exceptions to this, but they usually only qualify because the difficulties become manifest in what is on screen, which can generate tension in the viewer and also elevate what we see as a kind of poetry of adversity. Russian Arc would be a real easy example of this. It's not a film I have a great interest in the content of. I know absolutely nothing of Russian History in order to engage with it on that level. But I can watch it as a purely technical exercise, and sense the drama of one set piece after another complicating the balancing act the director is going for--grace in spite of insane pressure.

While I've never embarked on creating a serious shot at film, so I don't have intimate understanding of the physical complications there, I have written for work before. I have also engaged in a number of things in the visual arts. I have had no end of projects which were extraordinary complicated to pull off, and took endless hours to execute in a way that the end result seems extremely simple and (hopefully) effortless. Is it frustrating that others can't see all of the problem solving and labor that went into these small works? To a degree. Part of me wants all of my tricks known. But I also can't expect anyone to give me credit for that behind the scenes work. It isn't for them, after all. That work was for me. It only matters that I know what I did. All I can hope is what is left on the paper has some value to others, without them having to read into some extra effort I made. That would be the equivalent of saying something wonderfully and effortlessly clever, and then explaining why it is so devastatingly smart. I'd prefer my artists refrain from ever having to do that. If I want to learn more, leave it up to me to do the investigating. Then maybe I'll steal those ideas and use them in my own work, and also not get credit for all of the time and smarts spent on them.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by takeshi » Thu May 21, 2020 5:42 pm

ThatDarnMKS wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 9:55 pm
Baby Driver is solid. Extremely well crafted. A movie that finely edited and shot cannot be a piece of shit. You’re goddamn wrong. Make a movie.
I'm just jumping in here without really taking in where the subsequent conversation went but of course a well crafted film can be a piece of shit. Tons of mainstream cinema is serviceable nonsense that has money thrown at it to gloss over any artistic impropriety. If you're judging it purely on objective terms then that would make sense but that's not how anyone judges film. Surely the quality and worth of a film comes out of its subjective elements like aesthetics and taste and how it portrays human experience. I see no worth in Baby Driver personally because its, like you said, a style exercise but stitched together with weak narrative beats. It's fun in a cinema but feels like music video fodder outside of that context.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Ergill » Thu May 21, 2020 5:43 pm

crumbsroom wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 4:24 pm
In short, as much as I hate Babydriver, Edgar Wright did his job. People like his film. Good for him, even though I'd like to kick in in the gnads for this one. But did the critics do theirs? Not unless parroting back these sentiments is all they are required to do. Now, sure, you could argue they all liked it exactly as they claimed. They very possibly did. But the bulk of writing out their hardly challenges this assumption. It's all lazy boiler plate fluff. So, no, I don't have any faith in the work of critics, and I don't think they are doing their job. At least not the job I think they should be doing. Which is thinking and writing.
I think you have to unglue whether or not they like the movie from whether or not they're writing about it with any kind of depth or personality. If they liked the movie, I don't see why they're obligated to defy that feeling in the name of bucking the stream. That can become just as canned and spiritless as mainstream hackwork--e.g. Armond White, a person who feels more like a posture of likes or dislikes, more resentful calculator than an explorer of affect. But I guess that's personality difference here as I feel more agnostic than antagonistic to the mainstream. I don't really care all that much if someone liked the movie or didn't, swims with or bucks the stream of ratings, as much as I care about finding "things that quicken the heart" to quote Marker quoting whomever. Those are necessarily going to be rarer things by dint of the whims of human interest and sensitivity, and criticism, like anything else, will sag under the weight of Sturgeon's Law. Most criticism will be fairly instrumental and summary, as that's what most people are looking for. For those of us who want more, we have to hunt and find those few voices out there that quicken our hearts.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by ThatDarnMKS » Thu May 21, 2020 6:03 pm

takeshi wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 5:42 pm
I'm just jumping in here without really taking in where the subsequent conversation went but of course a well crafted film can be a piece of shit. Tons of mainstream cinema is serviceable nonsense that has money thrown at it to gloss over any artistic impropriety. If you're judging it purely on objective terms then that would make sense but that's not how anyone judges film. Surely the quality and worth of a film comes out of its subjective elements like aesthetics and taste and how it portrays human experience. I see no worth in Baby Driver personally because its, like you said, a style exercise but stitched together with weak narrative beats. It's fun in a cinema but feels like music video fodder outside of that context.
I’m not talking about gloss when it comes to craft. I’m talking about the ingenuity, effort and talent that it takes to put certain images, usually unconventional, on screen and the presence of this craft negates passive “piece of shit” dismissal. I’m fairly resolute in this and consider anyone that sees something with a high level of craft on display and dismisses the film as valueless doesn’t really give a shit about film as an art form.

And by all means, don’t. Keep your paradigms that discount technical artistry in favor of a purely subjective emotional response to the narrative. That’s your prerogative but it’s also mine to disagree with that paradigm entirely.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by MrCarmady » Thu May 21, 2020 6:11 pm

ThatDarnMKS wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 6:03 pm
I’m not talking about gloss when it comes to craft. I’m talking about the ingenuity, effort and talent that it takes to put certain images, usually unconventional, on screen and the presence of this craft negates passive “piece of shit” dismissal. I’m fairly resolute in this and consider anyone that sees something with a high level of craft on display and dismisses the film as valueless doesn’t really give a shit about film as an art form.

And by all means, don’t. Keep your paradigms that discount technical artistry in favor of a purely subjective emotional response to the narrative. That’s your prerogative but it’s also mine to disagree with that paradigm entirely.
Isn't a level of craft also quite subjective, though? I like Baby Driver, as I've said, but I used to think of performances as a technical element of a film, and yet in this thread, there's a plethora of assessments of Hamm, Foxx, Elgort, James, and Spacey in the film which range from good to awful, so clearly that's subjective. And if that's subjective, then why can't an editor's or a cinematographer's work be?
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Captain Terror » Thu May 21, 2020 6:14 pm

ThatDarnMKS wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 5:01 pm
As with the Conjuring, most of your complaints fall to tone and narrative with a complete disregard for craft.
I know this wasn't directed at me, but I don't think "complete disregard" is fair. I fully acknowledge, for example, that Yngwie Malmsteen plays the guitar "well", but that doesn't mean I have to like his records, right?

Or to use an example from my own field: As an artist I have achieved photo-realism with pencil and paper. I know the skill and effort that takes, but I find most photo-realism to be tedious to observe OR create and have very little interest in doing either.
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by Captain Terror » Thu May 21, 2020 6:18 pm

ThatDarnMKS wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 6:03 pm
the presence of this craft negates passive “piece of shit” dismissal.
I'll concede this, for sure. I wouldn't have described it as a "piece of shit". I think my use of "dillweed" was completely justified, however. ;)
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Re: Watching Movies Alone with crumbsroom

Post by crumbsroom » Thu May 21, 2020 6:25 pm

Ergill wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 5:43 pm
I think you have to unglue whether or not they like the movie from whether or not they're writing about it with any kind of depth or personality. If they liked the movie, I don't see why they're obligated to defy that feeling in the name of bucking the stream. That can become just as canned and spiritless as mainstream hackwork--e.g. Armond White, a person who feels more like a posture of likes or dislikes, more resentful calculator than an explorer of affect. But I guess that's personality difference here as I feel more agnostic than antagonistic to the mainstream. I don't really care all that much if someone liked the movie or didn't, swims with or bucks the stream of ratings, as much as I care about finding "things that quicken the heart" to quote Marker quoting whomever. Those are necessarily going to be rarer things by dint of the whims of human interest and sensitivity, and criticism, like anything else, will sag under the weight of Sturgeon's Law. Most criticism will be fairly instrumental and summary, as that's what most people are looking for. For those of us who want more, we have to hunt and find those few voices out there that quicken our hearts.
I'm definitely not looking for contrarianism for contrarianism sake either. Or a push back on the mainstream, which is just as easy to do as fully embrace it. It's the depth and personality part that I'm looking for, which is in short supply. A rare exception for me is what Red Letter Media do. Their interests frequently sway from what I'm watching, but they know how to put forth a unique point of view. They have a sense of humor. They care about what they are saying. And because of this they are a rarity. If only I could get them to talk about Melville or Dreyer or Fassbinder, we'd have a real winner and I could finally froth at the mouth.

I have no doubt there are endless critics out there, both paid for their work and not paid, that can be dug up. I just haven't managed to dig much, and have long since bothered trying. My gripe centers around those who get good gigs for writing about films, and as I'm mentioned before, seem to neither write nor think nor even feel about them. Even if they legitimately enjoyed what they watched, and I have no reason to claim otherwise for any of Babydrivers copious fans, they fact is they still write as if they have simply put up their finger to see which way the wind blows. It is both uninspired and it is lazy and they get to be defaulted as the so called experts. As far as I'm concerned they are negligent in their duty, even if the world now wants the movie critic's duty to serve a more utilitarian purpose for the public good and they are probably doing exactly this.

But I will never stop griping about the world diverging from how I want it to be. One needs a reason to growl after all.
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