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Artists v. Critics

 
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natasha_theobald
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2002 12:08 am    Post subject: Artists v. Critics Reply with quote

I saw another interview with another actor asserting that critics are merely frustrated artists who can't do the work themselves. Do you think it's true?
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UDM
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2002 12:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Of course it's true. I burn with envy when I see movies like Fear Dot Com. Don't we all?

You'll notice that critics are attacked like that only when they say negative things.

Actually, I tend to think that actors are really frustrated writers.

UDM
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The Guv'nor
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2002 2:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Every second person who tells you that they hate your reviews will pull this accusation out of the hat. What they forget is that movies (and books, and CD's) are made for an audience that pays to view the product, and therefore the members of that audience have the right to say whatever they goddamn want about the merits of the film. I don't need to be able to play the bass guitar to judge the worth of the latest Springsteen album (fantastic, actually), and since I paid 30 bucks for it there's no reason why I shouldn't.

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TheAngryJew
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2002 3:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If I had the choice between being an Oscar-Winning Screenwriter, or an Oscar-Winning Actor, I'd choose screenwriter every time.

But since I AIN'T a screenwriter, I'm the next best thing. Smile
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Charles Tatum



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PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2002 9:24 am    Post subject: A very long rant Reply with quote

I hate to toot my own horn, but: I was involved in almost a dozen university productions over the past few years. I have appeared in scores of local television commercials that have played all over the region. I was program director for the campus radio station, and reigned in upper management there my entire college career. I cowrote a documentary that was aired on network and public television in this region. I have a BA in Broadcasting, a minor in Comm. Arts, and a concentration in English, which includes over a dozen and a half credits in film studies classes alone. If Julia Roberts and Adam Sandler are tired of me wielding all of my invincible power over their pitiful output, and want to call me a frustrated artist, then fine. I could happily take one of their paychecks and write only happy thoughts about their films. But I am not Peter Travers. I have plenty of background in the entertainment field, but I choose to write film reviews.

It don't pay much, I made less than a buck last month on Epinions. I think Whoopi Goldberg (of all people) said it best. After Gene Siskel died, she mentioned him on the Academy Awards and said that "he called us on a lot of things." She could easily have been thinking of half her filmography, since I doubt people hold "Theodore Rex" video watching parties. I think the critic should call Hollywood on a lot of things. I want to be entertained as much as the next guy. If I have to sit through three hundred "American Pie" clones before something as funny as "Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Movie" comes along, so be it. I have been to the other side, I have done the artistic thing, and I just enjoy experiencing a film more than being involved in its conception, making, and marketing. Hollywood is so manipulative, and as critics, we must call them on it ALL THE TIME.

Remember "Beverly Hills Cop II?" I saw it with a group of friends who thought I was nuts for thinking it was awful. Then, years later, Eddie Murphy called the film a piece of shit in an interview. If the star of the damn thing recognizes the failings of the film, why can't a viewer/critic do so as well and verbalize it in a review? If Gwyneth Paltrow believes every film she does has altered her life, and civilization on Earth as we know it, fine, but read a critic you can rely on to get the straight dope about what is going on in "Duets."

Today, many in the music biz praise dead music critic Lester Bangs. Why? Because he practiced such unheard of entertainment reporting taboos as "honesty" and "truth." As a film critic, I do not give a rat's patoot if Angelina is fighting with Dad, or Nicolas is going to be a Scientologist to please Lisa Marie. I do care that my hard earned money (I work overnights in a Target warehouse- behold my power over Hollywood) is going to dreck like "Independence Day," and the experience will not make me a better person, or entertain me, or wish I hadn't just flushed ten bucks down the crapper.

So, to all you actors out there who think I am sitting here wishing I was a part of the magic that was "Battlefield Earth," sorry, I'll keep looking for good films and praise them as such. Don't pollute my local dive of a theater with "Mr. Deeds," and then call me unreasonable and inflexible. I am never impressed with anything that I think I could do better.
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y2mckay
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2002 1:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you Charles and Guv. Usually before I go see anything, I check out what the critics are saying (starting here, of course). I don't go see anything "blind" anymore. Why? Because I've been burned too many times in the past. My 10 dollars is valuable to me, but what's even more valuable is the 2-3 hours of liesure time that could perhaps be better spent elsewhere.

As for the frustrated artist thing - there may be a small element of truth to that. I actually started writing for HBS during a time of writer's block on my own novels. I wanted to keep the writing muscles active, though, and this seemed like a perfect outlet. Not only do I love movies and writing about movies, but I think my writing has improved because of it. It's a good exercise that doesn't take a lot of commitment time-wise (the average review takes, what, 15-20 minutes?). But at any rate, I've gone back to working on my own stories as well and I still love writing reviews, so I don't think there's a strong correllation between critiquing and not creating.
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Slyder
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2002 2:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

To quote Iggy Pop: If you like it great, if you don't then you can fuck off!!!!
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Oz
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2002 5:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

And to quote Johnny Rotten, "fuck off!"

Seriously though, Chuck the Tater and Guv both nailed it. We have every right to critique their work, and those of us who do have a deep down desire to move to the other side are only better critics as a result. If we know what WE would do in a said situation, then we sure as hell know what THEY did wrong.

And besides, doesn't everyone (actors, artists, writers, producers and critics) deep down really want to direct?
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Kelly Palma
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2002 11:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Part of it stems from people that simply can't just accept any form of criticism. But hey, they way I look at is this - That's why they [actors, actresses, directors, etc...] get paid the big bucks. If you suck, people are going to tell you. Those who are not in your entourage or on your pay roll aren't going to blow smoke up your ass if it isn't warranted. Suck it up, be an adult or even a professional if you will and take it. Hopefully you will learn something before the next atrocious movie you are in. If you don't, be prepared for another round of criticism.
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natasha_theobald
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 18, 2002 1:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, everyone thinks they can be an actor (like when things happen to regular people and they want to star in the Lifetime movie about it) and everyone thinks they can be a critic. Everyone has an opinion or reaction to something, but people forget that it takes some talent to articulate that reaction for the benefit of others. I think there is an art to it, at least when it's done well.
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Stephen Groenewegen
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 20, 2002 10:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Absolutely Natasha. There's so much "criticism" out there, but how much of it is shit? Anyone can write the occasional review, but trying to do it regularly (as nearly everyone here would know) raises the game to another level. And there is a real art to it when it's done well.

Getting back to the original question, I hate it when people assume film critics are frustrated filmmakers. I've never wanted to direct, nor particularly to act (I helped out mates with their student productions and sucked at it, frankly).

There are other things I want to write. But criticism is writing, so I don't see myself as frustrated.
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natasha_theobald
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 21, 2002 12:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Exactly. Writing about something you love is good practice for the writing that may not come as easily. It teaches you that sometimes you just have to put it out there and hope that somebody likes it. When I sit down to write, now, I have less fear and a stronger voice. At least I hope I do.
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Relay



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PostPosted: Tue Oct 22, 2002 3:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I prefer to be behind a camera instead. And about reviews nice ones is always good to read but nothing is to do a movie of my own. Just give me 500 million and i will made the most historical accurate movie ever made in Europe.
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Oz
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2002 3:41 pm    Post subject: Oh. Okay. Reply with quote

Where's my checkbook? What a pitch!
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y2mckay
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2002 5:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not only will it be the most historically accurate, but the most gramatikally correctest!
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The Other Kyle



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PostPosted: Sat Dec 07, 2002 7:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
There's so much "criticism" out there, but how much of it is shit? Anyone can write the occasional review, but trying to do it regularly (as nearly everyone here would know) raises the game to another level. And there is a real art to it when it's done well.


Well put. I know a lot of the reviewers here once wrote at Epinions, and the totally conspicous lack of quality is probably the reason most of them, including myself, chose to leave.
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Oz
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 08, 2002 7:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Honestly, I'm, surprised anyone bothers writing for Epinions anymore. You'd need to do it full time, spam links to your reviews around the clock and be really popular to make anything close to $10 a quarter on that thing. I did it back in the day when they were paying a profit share to writers and it was shitty even then. Can't imagine what it's like now...
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Jack Sommersby
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 26, 2002 6:52 pm    Post subject: ------------- Reply with quote

TheAngryJew wrote:
If I had the choice between being an Oscar-Winning Screenwriter, or an Oscar-Winning Actor, I'd choose screenwriter every time.

But since I AIN'T a screenwriter, I'm the next best thing. Smile


Yeah, Scott, but you wouldn't get nearly the amount of drop-dead gorgeous groupie nookie!!!!!
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Thom



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PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2003 4:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think actors better back the fuck up before one of 'em gets popped.

Y0, CRITICS IN THE HIZOUSE!

\/\/3rD!

It's not like Hollywood is a merit based system.
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