Jul 22, 2010

A Late Night Facebook Chat (with minor editing to cover up my typos)

did you like inception btw?
didn't you read my reviews?
oh i didn't see them geesh
i think i am less enthusiastic than most people i have talked to, but i still liked it
i agree with ebert's sentiment. its not that it was perfect, but come on, look at the movies they're making today
everything is a remake or a sequal or another chipmunks movie
so i'm supposed to judge it against airbender and sorcerers apprentice?
i was judging it against the dark knight
i would say its better than the dark knight, imho
we won't get quality movies if we lay down and take it, which is what ebert suggests
not better than dark knight
i think it was REALLY good. i'm just saying it wasn't perfect like some people think
if total recall and matrix didn't exist then maybe
i thought it was good too, but i didn't scream and hoot at the end or gasp with surprise is all
what movie did you scream and hoot at? in the theatre?
Spolier Alert
that's a good point
i was comparing myself to the audience with whom I saw the film who all groaned when nolan cut the camera before the top fell
i felt alienated from the human race because i didn't care
i knew it was going to be an ambiguous ending (again, total recall), and I knew the top was going to come into play
i'm just saying it wasn't a big shock
End Spoiler Alert
so you're saying that you give independence day positive reviews and this a mildish review?
LOL. I guess?... When you put it that way it does sound ludicrous
maybe i can appease you
ID4 was exactly what it was supposed to be, ie fluff
I expect cheesy lines and over the top action from a goofy film
Inception was clearly meant to be more serious and more seriously taken. I think it failed to reach its potential, that's all
maybe. for you. but i think it worked for the rest of the audience.
look at this
Good Lord. That 250 list is so effed up.
Being a critic, for me, is not about choosing what I think other people will like, but about writing honestly about what I like


  1. I loved reading this blog post. I think your point about expectations makes perfect sense. I operate that way, too. (I think Ebert does, too, fwiw. He's often said that he bases his star ratings -- at least in part -- on the expectations he brings to the film. How else could he sleep at night knowing that he gave JOY RIDE (2001) 3.5 stars???)

    This blog post has helped me understand my bristly feelings toward Inception, too. The marketing campaign was clearly trying to make it seem like the biggest and best thing ever. All that hush-hush stealth marketing stuff, and the semi-pretentious/confusing title is a total setup for parody. The movie and the marketing and the director all seem to take it SO SERIOUSLY, that when I read a funny line in a review (like "Nolan's dreams appear to be directed by Michael Bay"), it feels hilarious. It really takes the piss out of the self-serious mega-marketing that had been bombarding me and every other American for weeks. Little jokes feel like a come-uppance.

    This is why I loved it when that guy I know kept on insisting on calling the movie "Conception." I'm still laughing about that. Murdering the movie by subtly screwing with its stoopid title.

  2. I couldn't have said it better. If this movie had made little less of a big deal about itself, I would not be enjoying these jokes along with you as much as I am. If you haven't seen the film, the 'Conception' thing is even funnier after you have. I read one person's comments, and they summed it up as a film about a concept rather than the characters. Very funny.

    I'm not trying to hate on Ebert. I like the way he writes, and I sometimes agree with his ratings (though seldom). I am baffled that he could give A-Team 2 thumbs down under the "expectations" rule of thumb (pun intended). Was he expecting an artistic masterpiece from Jessica Biel and Badley Cooper?

    I think you said this already, but let me clarify my take. I factor in my expectations, and I factor in what I perceive as the filmmaker's intent. I'm sure there are other things that go into my overall review, but those are major. The problem with a movie that takes itself very seriously is that it must deliver. One break in character or silly moment can ruin the entire thing.

  3. I meant "Bradley", but it's kind of funnier that way.

  4. Totally: the filmmaker's intent. That's what I was trying to get at. I still want to see Inception, btw.

  5. Arg. So what you're saying is you're judging a FILM on the MARKETING that was done around it? I'm sorry but that's total and complete bullshite. What control does Nolan have over that? Of course there are cultural considerations around EVERY film. Lord knows I love Ghostbusters because it came out at just the right time and had all the right toys and happy meals and cartoons, etc.

  6. I think it is clear from the three posts I wrote that I am not only judging on marketing, and I stated above that it also had a lot to do with the feel the movie has regarding what it seems like the film-maker is trying to do.

    I am not dissing Nolan. I think he is one of the most talented directors around right now, and I had higher expectations for him. I think he accomplished a lot with this film, but it wasn't as mind-boggling as some of his earlier work (Following). All the ideas were there to make a mind-boggling film, and it just wasn't that for me, and that is frustrating, because I expect better from Nolan.

    Viewer expectations are not bullshite. They are one of many factors that go into one's overall experience.

    I judged this film on what I saw in the theater. The marketing is just something on the side about which it is fun to joke. If I had loved the movie, I wouldn't be thinking about the marketing at all.

  7. Also disappointing: Christopher Nolan directed THE PRESTIGE...

  8. ooh, i like this; using facebook chats as a blog-- i might start doing this, would save a lot of time! :)

    i find inception average.


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