Why Movies Suck Now Part Two: The Reality

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Why Movies Suck Now Part Two: The Reality

MovieBob shares the real reasons that movies suck these days.

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What are your opinions on My Big Fat Greek Wedding, anyway?

Anyway, thanks for opening my eyes to the theater situation!

Well, we could deal with #4 by phasing out theathers, and quick question. Do you include yourself under those elitist snobs, or is it everyone but you? Because if you don't, well, that sounds pretty egotistical to me. Personally, I like intelligent movies, but I also like unintelligent ones. The Transformers films are the Painkiller or Saints Row 2 of movies. They aren't intelligent, they're fun. I don't go to see them to see a good plot, I go for giant robot fights that melt ILM computers.

I'll be honest, I have very little standard in what I watch. Pretty much the only thing I avoid with a passion is somethig I have zero interest in (Twilight without the "Zone") and those god aweful "Spoof" series of movies. I actually made the mistake of watching Date Movie since a hot geek redhead was in it.

But I still insist on my friends knowing about the oddball stuff that wouldn't get play otherwise and vice versa. I first saw Momento when a buddy told me we have to rent it. And I've recently repaid that by having him watch White Christmas over the hollidays.

Otherwise, bring it on.

Average movie that's nothing special - Fire it up
Stunning piece of visual art - Why the hell not
Even the American Godzilla had some redemption - Jean Reno, Matthew Broderick, Hank Azaira

I'm Moriarty70 and I love movies.

I try not to watch too much junk as dicks like Michael Bay don't need anymore money. I try not to let the popular junk like Burton's desecration of Lewis Carrol because while something MAY be popular at the time the truly good movies will be remembered while junk will be forgotten to the sands of time.

Well to be truthful, I think the reason movies suck now is because they aren't fun... What do I mean by that? Well, lets take a look at a movie called Terminator 2. This movie is a very much loved film. But consider this, It has the biggest effects and large Hollywood budget like movies today have. But Terminator 2 has a couple of things other movies today lack.

-Characters we like and want to see live.

-Action scenes that have context and don't try to stretch their length for too long.

-A mix of Humor, Fear and other emotions. if characters in a movie hold the same emotional state in a movie for too long, it becomes boring.

this can also be said about movies like Star Wars.

In the movie Avatar, we mostly want the Military to win. Because the Na'vi are dull and boring. When you want the villians in a movie to win more then the Heroes, it's the movie makers fault.

In Star Wars, Darth Vader and The Emperor are great villians, but we don't want them to win.
The main characters in Star Wars are people who you feel like have become close friends to you, and you want to see them come out in the end A-OK.

I am not an expert critic, I am not the master of Critical Opinion. these are just my thoughts on why Movies suck now.

HG131:
Well, we could deal with #4 by phasing out theathers, and quick question. Do you include yourself under those elitist snobs, or is it everyone but you? Because if you don't, well, that sounds pretty egotistical to me. Personally, I like intelligent movies, but I also like unintelligent ones. The Transformers films are the Painkiller or Saints Row 2 of movies. They aren't intelligent, they're fun. I don't go to see them to see a good plot, I go for giant robot fights that melt ILM computers.

Did you miss the joke about movie-snobs making internet shows? He was talking about himself there.

HG131:
Well, we could deal with #4 by phasing out theathers, and quick question. Do you include yourself under those elitist snobs, or is it everyone but you? Because if you don't, well, that sounds pretty egotistical to me.

He has put him self in that group in the past, so I'm sure he does now too.

Anyway, I really liked this article. Especially the part about the elitist geeks. Whenever I find a movie or game that I think is awesome, my first instinct is to show it to as many people as I can so that they can experience the awesomeness themselves. I never understood why someone would try hide it from them.

Certainly I agree that every decade seems to have its own motif when it comes to the movies. This past decade was certainly the rise of the superhero movies, with cartoon adaptations being the understudy. But when you say 20 out of 100 will be worth watching, I really hope you mean out of every ten years. I can't honestly say I've seen more than 20 movies in that last ten years, mostly because while I am not a snob, I just haven't heard of many movies that really grab my attention as being something I'd want to watch.
Basing screenplays around popular books and movies is fine. Obviously, they do it because the studios know they will already have a built-in audience, and it's not a huge risk to them to make the movies because they anticipate they will make their investments back. I'm not all that crazy about them re-hashing old movies to try and update them for a modern audience, regardless of their actual financial outcome (such as War of the Worlds and The Day The Earth Stood Still). They might make a decent reproduction, but often they do not live up to the original. Take The Honeymooners movie they made a while ago where they replaced the original cast and made them all black to appeal to a niche audience. That didn't even make much sense, and apparently didn't make enough money to warrant a sequel. In situations like that, I'm glad. Ok, you proved you could do it and some people would see it. I'm just happy they didn't feel the need to continue to shove it down our throats like all that Tyler Perry shit. Did his plays really need big-screen counterparts, and a spin-off series of television shows? Not in my book. Basing movies on loose stereotypes is just lazy sociological writing that takes basically no imagination, but comes down to the bottom line: will this dumb idea make money? If that is ever a consideration you must make as as studio head, I say skip it in the future. Why bring your credibility into question to make a quick buck? Integrity is a lost trait these days, and it seems more and more studios and producers are more interested in making money than making a good name for themselves (I'm look you at you, George Lucas). I can't really suggest a good idea for a great movie, but it doesn't appear that a lot of people can do any better if the current movies are any indication.
Good articles, Bob. Keep it up!

Dubbed movies? I don't think so. If you're too lazy to read subtitles, you don't deserve to watch the movie. Besides, have you heard a dubbed movie before? The English speaking voice actors pout about as much emotion into it as a cardboard box, and the only exception I've seen is Afro Samurai, and that's because they had Samuel L. Jackson and Ron Perlman acting in it.

sturryz:
Well to be truthful, I think the reason movies suck now is because they aren't fun... What do I mean by that? Well, lets take a look at a movie called Terminator 2. This movie is a very much loved film. But consider this, It has the biggest effects and large Hollywood budget like movies today have. But Terminator 2 has a couple of things other movies today lack.

-Characters we like and want to see live.

-Action scenes that have context and don't try to stretch their length for too long.

-A mix of Humor, Fear and other emotions. if characters in a movie hold the same emotional state in a movie for too long, it becomes boring.

this can also be said about movies like Star Wars.

In the movie Avatar, we mostly want the Military to win. Because the Na'vi are dull and boring. When you want the villians in a movie to win more then the Heroes, it's the movie makers fault.

In Star Wars, Darth Vader and The Emperor are great villians, but we don't want them to win.
The main characters in Star Wars are people who you feel like have become close friends to you, and you want to see them come out in the end A-OK.

I am not an expert critic, I am not the master of Critical Opinion. these are just my thoughts on why Movies suck now.

What bob is saying (in #6 I do believe) is that the 90s were not packed with Terminator 2s, in fact, today you might find a terminator 2, but in essence, the 90s, like the rest of film history had its Terminator 2s and it's Transformers. It's just that all the transformers were forgotten (because well, who'd want to remember that?) thus adding to the false memory that there were no transformers prior to [current decade] and the whole film industry was just a big Terminator 2-fest.

I kinda liked My Big Fat Greek Wedding :$

I hardly go to the cinema anyways. But I tend to feel the reason the film is dubbed is the same reason they dubbed Mad Max: that "mainstream" audiences are xenophobic & thick who will only watch a film if it's in (American) English with at least a recognizable actors voice if not their face in it. I don't like paying $10-20 for the chance to sit in a darkened room & be told I'm a cretin for doing so.

MovieBob:
Why Movies Suck Now Part Two: The Reality

MovieBob shares the real reasons that movies suck these days.

Read Full Article

A few points and questions...

Re: Point 3 - I don't go to the cinema's much as a) I lack many real world friends who want to see the geeky movies I like, and b) everything you said in point 4 - that said, I did make the effort for District 9 and Kick Ass.

I would personally prefer it if going to see a movie alone wasn't such an unpleasant experience, in that you get alot of looks and the like from the other movie goers, but anywho...

Re: Point 5 - Who's Tyler Perry?

Re: Point 6 - Actually, yeah, this is very true for virtually every product humanity as ever produced. In fact, I wonder if the only caveman paintings that survive were made by the Uwe Bolle's of the day and in fact much better examples where lost to history.

ProfessorLayton:
Dubbed movies? I don't think so. If you're too lazy to read subtitles, you don't deserve to watch the movie. Besides, have you heard a dubbed movie before? The English speaking voice actors pout about as much emotion into it as a cardboard box, and the only exception I've seen is Afro Samurai, and that's because they had Samuel L. Jackson and Ron Perlman acting in it.

I live in Germany, where EVERY movie is dubbed. The voice actors are definitely not bad, but usually not as good as the original actors (that and the fact that the voice is an integral part of a character and one of the most important things in acting, so it is understandable to want to hear it in the original language). Oh, and did I mention that there are probably around 15 voice actors that speak in EVERY SINGLE MOVIE? It gets old very fast. In fact, I rarely go to the cinema anymore because I can't enjoy films like this. I have to wait six months for the DVD release of Inception and hope to God that no one will spoil this for me.
tl;dr No one should be subjected to dubs and film buffs demanding subtitles is perfectly understandable.

Best. Article. Ever.

Pyode:

HG131:
Well, we could deal with #4 by phasing out theathers, and quick question. Do you include yourself under those elitist snobs, or is it everyone but you? Because if you don't, well, that sounds pretty egotistical to me.

He has put him self in that group in the past, so I'm sure he does now too.

Anyway, I really liked this article. Especially the part about the elitist geeks. Whenever I find a movie or game that I think is awesome, my first instinct is to show it to as many people as I can so that they can experience the awesomeness themselves. I never understood why someone would try hide it from them.

Cool. I don't really follow him, as his hate for the Transformers films earned him my ire.

findler:

HG131:
Well, we could deal with #4 by phasing out theathers, and quick question. Do you include yourself under those elitist snobs, or is it everyone but you? Because if you don't, well, that sounds pretty egotistical to me. Personally, I like intelligent movies, but I also like unintelligent ones. The Transformers films are the Painkiller or Saints Row 2 of movies. They aren't intelligent, they're fun. I don't go to see them to see a good plot, I go for giant robot fights that melt ILM computers.

Did you miss the joke about movie-snobs making internet shows? He was talking about himself there.

I saw it as just that, a joke.

Man, I should probably pay attention to some element of our culture that isn't video games at some point. Who the hell is Tyler Perry? I honstly don't ever remember hearing that name before.

I was interested by his dubbing comment. I hate dubs. I HATE dubs. I can't watch a dubbed movie because it completely ruins the film for me. I can understand how people might argue that anime can be dubbed (since its a cartoon) but as someone who watches shitloads of anime I've found English dubbing to be almost universally awful. Even "good" dubs are inferior to the original so I see no reason in watching them. What usually happens though is they get mediocre voice actors to try and match the lips, which were meant to sync with Japanese, not English, and they end up speaking awkwardly and devoid of the proper emotions to compensate.

That's just anime though. Dubbed LIVE ACTION movies are inexcusable. You can kind of pretend the lips sync if its a cartoon but with real actors it looks incredibly stupid.

Anyway tl;dr, fuck dubs.

I agree with the last answer the most. The only reason there are so many good movies from the past is that we've already been there and have sorted out the good from bad.

Oh, and look. More insults directed at the mainstream. I kind of don't want to start trouble with this, but I'm working on 'defender of the mainstream' as a title here.

Isn't the whole purpose of art to cause an emotional response in people? Mostly a good response? If shows like Jersey Shore and series like Twilight can bring out a much greater positive emotional response in so many more people than many of the intelligent movies like Splice, what does that say about the whole issue? Maybe stripping down the pieces of art that causes positive emotional responses until it's barely more than the basic structure works better than tacking on shitloads of easter eggs and similar things for the viewers to feel smug about themselves for finding?

As an English Major, I'd like to offer a different perspective and another reason:

No good stories and no discipline.

As children of the 90's we were raised with such animated greats such as Animaniacs, Batman The Animated Series, and Pinky and the Brain. Great animated series with sophisticated themes that proved that animation could be a mainstream success amongst any and all audiences. For some including me this translated into an interest in anime with such great series like Cowboy Bebop, Ghost in the Shell, and Trigun which also proved that Anime could be a mainstream success. What does the previous decade have to show for it? Michael Bay, Reality TV, and 4Kids.

It's enough to make you cry, isn't it?

Of course, there's a whole lot of factors such as the recent economic downturn and how special effects have taken priority. But that's because studios and producers decide to cut out writers and instead put in all their money in effects because that's all the "mainstream" audience wants: eye candy! That's the only reason why Bay still has a job. Star Wars was a great film but it brought about the precedent of mind-blowing effects and a relatively weak story.

Few films can strike the right balance between substance and style (The Dark Knight, Inception, District 9, etc.) and even fewer directors have the discipline to maintain that delicate balance (Nolan, Scott, Terentino, etc.) The rest? Either they've completely sold their souls to the dark gods of effects (Bay, again) or have turned their backs on good stories in the name of profit. Cameron used to defy gender conventions but now plays race conventions ("White Messiah" complex in Avatar, anyone?) straight. Zemeckis could make great great films on a shoestring effects budget but now has reversed the formula with soulless films with effects that are definitely on the wrong side of the Uncanny Valley. And Lucas? The less said the better.

The current and previous generations have been spoiled by visceral and epic visuals. Studios have responded in kind by giving them what they want. While I can't speak for the group, I can only hope that my generation, the 90's generation, can learn from the mistakes from your generation, the 80's generation, and hearken back to the cartoons we used to watch that gave us precedent on how to balance story and effects.

If anything else, I hope I can apply said discipline in my writing.

HG131:
Well, we could deal with #4 by phasing out theathers, and quick question. Do you include yourself under those elitist snobs, or is it everyone but you? Because if you don't, well, that sounds pretty egotistical to me. Personally, I like intelligent movies, but I also like unintelligent ones. The Transformers films are the Painkiller or Saints Row 2 of movies. They aren't intelligent, they're fun. I don't go to see them to see a good plot, I go for giant robot fights that melt ILM computers.

Thats why I went to the Transformers films as well. But what I got was one or two sweet fights between robots, the rest of the movies were about the damn humans.

Scobie:
Man, I should probably pay attention to some element of our culture that isn't video games at some point. Who the hell is Tyler Perry? I honstly don't ever remember hearing that name before.

Tyler Perry makes histrionic melodramas that are hugely popular with black American audiences and unwatched by practically everyone else. As you have an anime character as your avatar pic, I'm guessing you're pretty far outside that demographic.

Perry's movies are actually a notch above SATC and Twilight - at least they reflect a kind of auteur's vision. The others are crassly commercial cash-ins based on wish fulfillment.

I do get that nostalgia and time heals all bad movie wounds (well most, nothing will heal Starship Troopers) but things have gotten worse of late. Not a much worse at it may first appear but it's gone from say 90% crap to 92% crap. There is not a whole lot more crap out there but 20% of what is good has gone if you take my really dumb analogy.

I think the most toxic one os the first one and it's started creeping into gaming as well, it's impropper valuation of what turns a profit. "Fight Club" was a box office bomb but became a sensation on DVD through word of mouth. Firefly was axed because fox cared only about ratings and did not see it's massive DVD/ franchising potential. Metro 2033 turned a huge figure profit becuase of it's lower cost base having been made in Keiv Studios/publishers need to look more long term and really decide what makes their money.

Many Things that according to convential big distributor 'wisdom' shouldn't succeed tend to do so. But instead of recognising this everyone is busy trying to make a cheaper version Avatar and Moder Warfare 2 instead of realisng that "Predators" and "Sins of a solar Empire" can turn profit for less risk due to their lower budgets.

Adressing the Dubs issue, it's fine if there are BOTH. I know people who as dyslexic. They are perfectly intelligent people but just have trouble reading at any rate. For them subtitles are not an option. Now i like original audio with subs (especially on my anime) BUT good dubs are perfectly fine and bob is right, they bring in more than just the niche fan-bufs. Sometimes you have to compromise in order for things to make buisness sense, movies have to be cut in order to recive the propper rating (the ratings system in the USA is a FUCKING MESS and essentially adds up to total censorship of real eroticism but that is another thread entirely) and not bomb due to the R18/ AO kiss of death. I mean can you imagine trying to get something like Gantz past a stuffy ratings board uncut?

We can get our uncut stuff on DVD if we are that fussy about it but please don't just pull the boycott lever becuase something has mildly compromised to sell.

Irridium:

HG131:
Well, we could deal with #4 by phasing out theathers, and quick question. Do you include yourself under those elitist snobs, or is it everyone but you? Because if you don't, well, that sounds pretty egotistical to me. Personally, I like intelligent movies, but I also like unintelligent ones. The Transformers films are the Painkiller or Saints Row 2 of movies. They aren't intelligent, they're fun. I don't go to see them to see a good plot, I go for giant robot fights that melt ILM computers.

Thats why I went to the Transformers films as well. But what I got was one or two sweet fights between robots, the rest of the movies were about the damn humans.

They were enough for me (in 2, 1 needed more robots).

BigBoote66:
Tyler Perry makes histrionic melodramas that are hugely popular with black American audiences and unwatched by practically everyone else. As you have an anime character as your avatar pic, I'm guessing you're pretty far outside that demographic.

I'm as white and nerdy and British as can be, baby.

Movie Theaters, had it coming. (Insanely) overpriced food, barring people from openly bringing food from other places into the theater, ticket prices (given there is a reason for this) and the damned stupid recycle your 3D glasses so we can sell them back to you next time. I like the rest of the article, but theaters get no sympathy from me, though I'm probably biased because they attempted to card me when I tried to get tickets for up, claiming I needed physical state marked proof that I was over 18 to buy tickets for a G movie, that and well, the prices.

Dubbing sucks no matter what. There is no A list cast, there is no technology that makes dubbing work.

Theaters are crapholes that should be using casino face recognition technology to keep out the cell phone users and people who talk during the movie. But they don't.

Movies always sucked but they sucked less when I was young and going to the movie was as much about hanging out with my idiot friends as it was seeing the picture.

That said I'm taking a special cross state trip and getting a hotel room to see Tron on a real IMAX screen.

ProfessorLayton:
Dubbed movies? I don't think so. If you're too lazy to read subtitles, you don't deserve to watch the movie. Besides, have you heard a dubbed movie before? The English speaking voice actors pout about as much emotion into it as a cardboard box, and the only exception I've seen is Afro Samurai, and that's because they had Samuel L. Jackson and Ron Perlman acting in it.

Ok the fact that you actually say "you don't deserve to watch the movie" shows you're an elitist snob. I agree I fucking hate dubbing it always sounds terrible. So I watch subtitled versions. Let's face it most theaters won't have foreign films anyway so chances are you'll be waiting for the DVD so you'll have that option. Things like Avatar are going to be dubbed because well they're usually aired on channels like Nickelodeon so they're not going to alienate young kids (i.e. the majority of people who watch the channel).

Jacques 2:
Movie Theaters, had it coming. (Insanely) overpriced food, barring people from openly bringing food from other places into the theater, ticket prices (given there is a reason for this) and the damned stupid recycle your 3D glasses so we can sell them back to you next time. I like the rest of the article, but theaters get no sympathy from me, though I'm probably biased because they attempted to card me when I tried to get tickets for up, claiming I needed physical state marked proof that I was over 18 to buy tickets for a G movie, that and well, the prices.

The food is overpriced because we wouldn't be able to stay open if it wasn't in most cases we get about one or two euro per ticket. So even in a best case scenario in a six screen theatre like the one I work in a good day is about 2000 customers. 4000 euro (compared to weekdays when we'd usually draw in about 200-300 so 400 to 600 euro). Then the fact that the theaters are pretty much dead all week from September to May except for holidays and huge releases. We'd be lucky to break even if we charged regular store prices for the concessions. Besides we actually can't stop people bringing in food.

Well, time to throw in my two cents.

The thing I feel most critics overlook is that the art of storytelling has changed. In the "golden age" the only alternative to cinema was the theater or reading. Both require imagination. You could not be an actor on film without first getting your chops on the stage first. They were required to carry the scene without the help of special effects, large sets, or cgi (there are exceptions of course).
Today, the film has to hold the audiences hand through each step of the way, making sure we don't get lost and confused. People now go to movies to see the actor not the acting. And if you sit around after and talk about how great the special effects were (Avatar) the movie sucked (You not supposed to notice the really good special effects, like how a magic trick is done).

I think what ruins movies and games these days are the necessity to make everything with gritty realism. Don't get me wrong this is not the same as intense violence. I like movies to be escapist pieces. I'm not so devoid of creativity to think everything needs to be set in present day New York.
I believe if you're going to make a superhero movie, pit them against super villains. I don't think they should be concerned about making it believable or realistic. And certainly not waste time on another generic crime boss villain either.

Spot1990:
Ok the fact that you actually say "you don't deserve to watch the movie" shows you're an elitist snob. I agree I fucking hate dubbing it always sounds terrible. So I watch subtitled versions. Let's face it most theaters won't have foreign films anyway so chances are you'll be waiting for the DVD so you'll have that option. Things like Avatar are going to be dubbed because well they're usually aired on channels like Nickelodeon so they're not going to alienate young kids (i.e. the majority of people who watch the channel).

I know I'm an elitist snob who scoffs at anyone unwilling to watch foreign movies, but that was partly a joke... I meant it like why even bother watching the movie if reading subtitles is too much work for you? The kind of people who don't want to do that are the kind of people who would rather watch Transformers 2 over Let the Right One In... Also, the Last Airbender is an American show; those are the real voice actors.

Very good article, and I agree with most of it. But if that's the case, Bob, then you're part of the problem, especially on points 3 and 6. But hey, I give you props for you to be brave enough to come out and admit it. Because yes, there are many times in your reviews when you do act like an elitist snob, espcially with regards to the Transformers and Twilight series (And could you please take some time out to explain just what the hate is behind Tyler Perry? I've never seen his movies, mainly because I'm not his target audience. But what I know of him doesn't seem to justify the vitriol you're lobbing in his direction. So what's the deal?)

If you do indeed acknowledge that the majority of movies aren't good, then really, stop bemoaning the quality of movies these days and just accept that as a part of life. Not everything has to be high cinema. Yes, it's nice when we get an Inception every once in a while, and I really liked that movie too. But just because you didn't like Transformers or Twilight doesn't mean it's worthless. Somebody likes those movies. Hell, I'll openly admit to liking the first Transformers film, and I'm sure you'll recall that I have. But I don't believe that it's a reflection on my IQ. Sometimes I just like to sit back and watch a movie that's lightweight entertainment. I see nothing wrong with that. No, the second one wasn't good, but not for the same reasons you've said (in short I blame the writer's strike).

My point being, just as there's enough room in the world for haute cuisine and McDonald's, there's equally enough room for both really good movies and average to bad ones. I don't think it marks the decline of civilization that these movies exist like you and some others think it does. As you've pointed out, there have always been bad movies, and for that matter there will always be good ones. The world will go on. The more things change, the more they stay the same, as they say.

Doug:

MovieBob:
Why Movies Suck Now Part Two: The Reality

MovieBob shares the real reasons that movies suck these days.

Read Full Article

A few points and questions...

Re: Point 3 - I don't go to the cinema's much as a) I lack many real world friends who want to see the geeky movies I like, and b) everything you said in point 4 - that said, I did make the effort for District 9 and Kick Ass.

I would personally prefer it if going to see a movie alone wasn't such an unpleasant experience, in that you get alot of looks and the like from the other movie goers, but anywho...

Re: Point 5 - Who's Tyler Perry?

Re: Point 6 - Actually, yeah, this is very true for virtually every product humanity as ever produced. In fact, I wonder if the only caveman paintings that survive were made by the Uwe Bolle's of the day and in fact much better examples where lost to history.

Who is Tyler Perry you ask? Well, he is a well known actor/comedian. Personally, I don't think he is funny at all, but that's just me. He's the main character on the show Tyler Perry's House of Payne; obviously since his name is in the title.

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