Posted by Ed
Here are two recent articles on movies that are worth checking out:
Frankly, I have never looked at my watch as often during a movie as I did in "The Return of the King." Toward the end, I found myself desperately cheering on the giant spider in hope of getting home early. Eat Frodo! Eat him!
If the obsession with expensive technology and shallow effects is to ruin Hollywood film as an art form, by all means let the deed be carried out with the help of talented New Zealanders. The visual effects, costumes and makeup Oscars for "Lord of the Rings" are richly deserved. But beyond that, are these movies, or any of the over-technologized films of our epoch, of lasting value? Let's get a grip.
Even so, I enjoyed Dutton's article--and I think it's especially interesting alongside Teachout's commentary on digital animation in Finding Nemo (part of the Triplets review above.) I wish that there were more blogs willing to take a contrarian stance on popular movies, instead of just asserting that a movie is great and urging readers to go see it.
Tangential update: Michael Medved has published a Wall Street Journal article on Jack Valenti that touches on an interesting theme: the decline in movie audiences. I don't think you can understand movies as a cultural phenomenon without understanding their viewership, though I'm too lazy to discuss this question today. (See the brief comment on Casablanca and The Wizard of Oz above--and remember that movie audiences were much larger in 1939 than in 1965, when--Medved writes--they were far larger than they are today.)Posted by Ed at April 5, 2004 01:59 PM