Tuesday, December 21, 2010

But Is It Fun?

Many years ago a movie called Deep Blue Sea came out. It was a cheesy Sci Fi/horror flick about genetically altered sharks that eat a research station. It starred Samuel L. Jackson and for some reason I actually went to the theater to see it. It was not in any way, shape, or form a good movie, but I had fun with it and never regretted seeing it. The trouble came when my friends asked me what I thought of it. As I recall I merely said I liked it. This translated into 'this is a good movie you should go see'. Which they did. They still give me shit for telling them it was a good movie, which I never said, but it did teach me to put tons of disclaimers in front of saying I enjoyed a movie.

In my younger years I was a terrible movie critic, especially with franchise films like Star Trek or Star Wars, but I've found I've mellowed a lot over the years. Two very prominent examples of this are AVATAR and TRON:Legacy. My wife and I saw TRON at the IMAX (there are far too many all caps things in this post) on Friday morning, and I was blown away. The 3D is nice, the film is gorgeous, and the soundtrack is stunning, but the story does not do anything but provide a framework for the technical aspects. And that's fine...for me anyway. It was fun. More and more I've been judging movies by that metric. Was it fun? I've seen lots of fun movies lately. The Expendables, R.E.D., AVATAR, TRON, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Iron Man 2, Predators, even The Last Airbender (but to be fair I had never seen any of the shows on TV so the plot was tabula rasa to me) were all a fun time. Conversely if a movie isn't entertaining me it doesn't matter how amazing the performances are, I tune out. Some people have tried to get me to 'expand my horizons' and watch 'good' movies, but I've found that my boredom threshold has risen drastically, and I have little patience for films I don't like. If we're at home, and I can just jump on the computer while my wife finishes the movie, it's fine. But if we go to the movies, and I'm not enjoying the film, and I can't leave for one reason or another, I get angry. Knight and Day, with Tom Cruise, was TERRIBLE, but my wife was enjoying it, so I kept quiet, and was in a horrible mood for the rest of the day. So now I am growing less shy about saying no to movies I know I won't enjoy. I'm very lucky in that my wife tends to like the same movies I do, and is very accommodating about not forcing me to watch stuff I'm not into, so Knight and Day was a rare thing, and I don't hold it against her. Although I do still kind of grumble that she made me go see Transformers 2. ;-)

So what's my point, you may well ask? If I rave about a movie in any of my online outlets, or even in person, please understand that just because I liked a movie that does not mean that it is a quality film. On the other hand just because I didn't like a movie, it does not follow that the film is crap. I release into the universe that my opinions of movies, music, books, food, and anything short of orgasms(because really, who doesn't like orgasms) is strictly subjective. Your actual mileage may vary.

And now I'll go make some breakfast. If you don't like breakfast you are wrong and a terrible person.



flurrious said...

A long time ago, I had a similar problem with a coworker after I said that I liked Teen Wolf. She took that to mean that I thought Teen Wolf was a good film, accordingly went to the theater with her husband to see it, and then came to work and tried to berate me for it. But this is the same woman who willing saw The Big Chill more than once, so I don't know what she was complaining about.

Stinkypaw said...

I enjoy movies which entertain me, that alone makes for a good movie in my book. I've liked all the movies (that I've seen, at least) you've listed and I rarely rely on other people to pick a movie anyway. I go more with do I want to see it on a BIG screen or wait for the DVD... lame I know, but that's my main criteria!

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