Sunshine, Light, and Joy


This is a post that I've been thinking about for awhile. Recently, I opened up the discussion to other members of the staff to get their feelings on the matter, and their opinions generally matched mine, which is this:

Within the last year or so, there's been a steady increase of negative posts in movie threads. We've always had some heated discussions for some movies, but recently things have not only gotten more histrionic in those threads (generally speaking, the CBM ones), but they've started to spread to other franchises and other movies as well. I'm not talking about out-and-out trolling, I'm talking about members feeling they have to consistently shit on a movie (or studio, or star) simply because they aren't interested in the current project or projects. With every piece of news about a movie, it's now a virtual guarantee that there's a flood of people rushing to say they think it sucks, they don't like the current trailer/tv spot/actor/actress/director/concept. And I get it -- we all have movies we don't like, movies which we think are bad ideas, industry people that just don't appeal to us. But there's a fine line between expressing your opinion about this and doing it so often, with such consistency, that the collective emphasis of all of it basically brings down the entire thread and thus the entire forum.

There's no easy answer to this. We don't want to crush freedom of expression here. But at the same time, the spirit of this forum is for people to have fun talking about the movies they love and the box-office runs they love.

To have fun.

And while it may be fun -- in a sense -- to personally vent about a movie, or to vent at people who dare to enjoy something you don't, it doesn't bring fun to our community. In fact, it generally drags down the overall fun for everyone else. We've had people repeatedly mention to us over the last several months or so that in some cases they don't even bother going into some threads -- even for movies they're curious about! -- because they just don't want to deal with the overall mess those threads contain. And frankly, that matches the personal opinion of most of the staff as well.

So this post is both a request and a warning. 

The request: Next time you feel like taking a dump on a movie (or a topic) for the dozenth time, take a moment to consider whether it's really worth it. People probably already have a good idea of what your attitude about the project is. Maybe just put your posting energy into a movie that you enjoy and love or are excited about.

The warning: The staff is going to be taking a closer look at some of these threads and we'll be more active with temp thread-bans if we think it'll help the overall vibe of the forum. I'd rather we don't have to, but it's not going to constrain any of you too much if you aren't allowed to post about a movie you supposedly don't care about anyway.

Remember the words of Bill and Ted: "Be Excellent to Each Other".

They're just movies, guys. It's about having fun.

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About dashrendar44

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  1. Avatar haters don't realize that Next-Gen videogames they enjoy right now are built on technological advancement and achievement made by VFX companies for movies like Avatar. Videogame industry took notice and incorporated those new tools in their pipelines to similarly push the envelope (Realistic lighting and shadow bouncing rendered in real time in gigantic interactive environments that are not baked and pre-calculated in textures anymore. Performance capture etc.). It's a porous environment. (The greatest concept designers are familiar with both industries as they can swing back and forth from cinema to videogames so mutual influence is felt). Avatar was like the monolith in 2001 for VFX artists and industry. So the impact is still there but not for the phillistines even if they bath in it without even realizing it. (And people tend to forget that veteran ILM's VFX artist Jon Knoll and his bro created and developed from scratch what is now known as Photoshop just for Abyss purpose for the water tentacle sequence. Now every artists and their mothers have grind their teeth on it to create their own stuff).
  2. Yeah, that Ron Howard bashing is getting real tedious. Vanilla? Journeyman? Yes but the guy's filmography is versatile and a solid veteran director to boot at this point and can work scale serving the material under producer's pressure as he is one too. He's basically Hollywood royalty and knows Lucasfilm from the inside out. I don't know why people are screaming doom and gloom, he's not a rookie or a total hack that he's unable to bring something to the table either. Sure, we won't have idiosynchracies, meta-references, hectic and snappy comedic quips running wild on improv but that doesn't mean it will be a boring dud because it lacks those characteristics.
  3. Well, imo, he already does. Star-Lord is written like Han Solo and Jack Burton rolled into one. A manchild goofball who's also pretty good at badass wraygunslinging and saving the day between quips.
  4. Maybe... *Playing the woulda/shoulda game* My take is that they went full Jack Burton on Han Solo. Hence the report that Kennedy and Kasdan were flummoxed at the characterization ("SOLO IS NOT A COMEDIC CHARACTER FFS!"), maybe Solo was given a "deconstruction of the eighties badass hero tropes" that felt like desecrating the idol at the risk of making him the buffoon of his story (that Glover's Lando and Clarke's female character would rather be the main thrust while Solo bumbles around thinking he owns everything) rather than playing ball by portraying him exactly like he was back in the OT, like Kasdan wrote him on the page. That's not a bad take per se but I can understand why Kennedy saw red at the editing bay, that sounds like more of a parody dangerously treading the lines of a spoof movie.
  5. Didn't you get the memo, people had forgotten about the magnifiscence of Star Wars, people had forgotten how much they loved the OT, they had to be reminded every single second of TFA because prequels brainwashed them and jedi wiped those delightful memories by their utter awfulness somehow...Or something about re-capitalizing the brand, reviving the franchise (shelling 4 Billion for a so-called dead franchise) and maximizing profits. Yeah, when you have to wait three movies in to actually go forward since 2012 announcement, that's all you need to be said about the "artistry" and "creativity" at play at Disney/Lucasfilm boards. Makes me laugh that all those "authors" want to play in this caged sandbox like they're making an artistic statement eight movies in when you're asked to be a retailer repackaging the OT with a brand new label."SW Greatest Hits!", "SW MEMBER BERRIES Special Edition!", "The unnoficial backstory of whatever happened in the OT, NOW COMING !", "ESB 2.0!", "SW: KEEPING UP WITH THE SKYWALKERS!" The more it goes the more I think the mantra that SW is some infinite potential universe is some kind of superficial outlook, (yeah you have two billions planets, species and spaceships but how many different stories can you write that isn't a variation of ANH Hero's journey about big baddies against nice rebels in a space western with a moral conflict of good vs evil crystallized in the main protagonist?), look at the now non-canon EU, mostly riffing on the OT because diverting from Skywalker and Jedis/Siths make the fans either angry or bored. Then you have The Old Republic stuff which are like prequels to the prequels that only hardcore fans are into and that Disney won't touch with a ten feet pole.
  6. Surprisingly, my spider-sense reminds me of a mini-Spiderman 2 pre-release. Same spot in the summer here in France, same murked competition poising it to break out (Potter and Shrek 2 holdovers but the direct competition was pretty poor), same grounded setting putting us in the shoes of Parker's mundane life having to reconcile with his superheroic deeds on a daily basis (minus Raimi, Elfman and Molina all knocking it out of the park), could be the same generational embrace as Maguire was the Spidey of the Y2K kids and teens. I got fond memories of my Spider-Man 2 theater experience. The place was hot, cheerful and stacked as fuck around national day, right from the opening credits, every single beat, either action or comedy, worked gangbusters that I consciously thought during the movie that was the perfect comic-book movie ever made since Batman Returns. (And still is) I'm not a nostalgia guy but it reminds me that you could have quality time watching a summer blockbuster made with genuine heart, earnestness and passion at the core without being cynically made by commitee and dumbed down. If Watts and his team can nail that tone balance that made Spidey 2 memorable, this could connect with general audience big time.
  7. Does that mean that my man Bradford Young is also fired alongside the directors as he was their DP? (On IMDB, he is still credited but I recall reading that Kennedy severed the head supervisor of cinematography team to recalibrate the overall vision of the footage)
  8. Star Wars is not Kasdan's baby, come on already. Lucas wrote ESB's treatment including Vader's twist, Leigh Brackett did a pass then politely ditched it by asking Kasdan to polish it. (But Lucas & Kershner had to rein him in because all of his ideas weren't that great. Killing Han Solo and many more grimdark downbeats). So I find it fuckin' rich that Kasdan acts all protective and uppity about a saga and a character he didn't even created in the first place when he was in Lord/Miller subordonate position back then having to work within George Lucas parameters and under his helming, you know the one who did create Star Wars and Han Solo in 1977 before he was hired. But somehow Kasdan is treated as an untouchable God that can do no wrong.
  9. He was the "SCALE CONSULTANT". On top of my head, Dr Moreau 96, Richard Stanley fired after three days of shooting in favor of John Frankenheimer. Also Rambo 3 when Russell Mulcahy was fired by Stallone during shooting.
  10. If that makes this current generation of filmmakers that thinks Star Wars is the Alpha and Omega of Cinema slightly reflect about contemplating the thought of helming one of those franchise movies in a much sober way, it surely doesn't look like the "dream job" their inner fanboy naively envisioned since they were in diapers playing with their Hasbro figurines anymore... (Funny how we omit George Lucas being miserable and on constant verge of heart failures suffering nervous breakdown while making and producing the original movies. They don't seem like being that much fun to make behind the scenes)
  11. Never watched a movie in theaters switching back and forth from scope to imax aspect ratio but I imagine it to be a bit like an autobot tilting the theater screen like a smartphone screen sideways on and on (without the head contortion to adapt vertically though ). That has to be annoyingly distracting if it keeps on cutting back and forth pulling you out of the movie consciously focusing on the framing instead of what is in the frame if it isn't being used in a whole sequence.