Tuesday, April 9, 2013

The Problem With Horror Elitists and the Self Appointed Critics or, Roger Ebert Would Be Ashamed of You.

“It's easy to attack and destroy an act of creation. It's a lot more difficult to perform one.”  
 ― Chuck Palahniuk

If you know me, then you know that I have long harbored a distaste for critics.  I have never been able to wrap my mind around the idea that someone can cut apart a work of art that he or she has not created to begin with.  Sure, it's fine to have an opinion about something and it's perfectly fine to not like it, however I don not think it is fine to rip apart someone else's work and make statements that you are not qualified to make.

Isn't Midnight Cinephile a review site, henceforth, aren't you a critic?  Well, yes, it is.....but do I view myself as a critic?  No, I do not.  I am a fan of cinema, and I enjoy talking about it.  However, I see absolutely no merit in blatantly insulting a movie that I do not like just to seem witty.  If I don't like a film, that's just fine.  It doesn't make it a bad film, necessarily.  It makes it a film that I don't care for.  People have different tastes, end of story.

Now I must come clean here about something:  Back in November of 2012, I published a scathing review of the film ATM.  I just re-read it and I must say that I am thoroughly ashamed of that review and I have subsequently removed.  Suffice to say that I did not like the film.....but that is no excuse for the review that I posted.  It was downright nasty and mean spirited and I would like to apologize to the filmmakers for the comments that I made, as they were uncalled for and completely unprofessional.  So to David Brooks (Director) and Chris Sparling (Writer) I am truly sorry.

I feel better getting that off my chest.

“[If] you are ready enough to pull my knitting to pieces, but provide none of your own, the only sock is a sock in the jaw!” 
― J.R. Ackerley

So what's going on here?  What's with this rant?  Well, I'll tell you what it's about:  The Evil Dead remake.  I have been been absolutely and completely disgusted with the venom that has spewed forth in the wake of the films premier.  Now this certainly isn't the first time that a film has received a severe backlash after it's release....but this one really bugs me, so here I am on my soap box, shaking my fist and defying self righteous cynical elitist horror snobs.  Yeah, that's right, I said elitists.  I am so tired of these keyboard cowboys sitting upon their high horses and spitting out the same sarcasm and trying to seem oh-so-witty while tearing apart the latest horror films.

Even worse than this are these so called critics who outright insult the people who enjoy said films in question, saying such things as their unhappiness with the "unprecedented willingness today of fans who celebrate utter shit and meaningless tripe" and asking questions such as "who over the age of 30 actually expects one of these remakes to be any good?"  I find that extremely insulting.  So because I'm over thirty and I enjoyed the film, I'm immature?  Well fuck you very much!

What disgusted me even more than this was when a positive review was posted by a well known horror magazine editor, he was blatantly attacked and called a sell-out.  This is purely disgusting and I cannot stand to be associated with such acts of contempt and ineptitude.

To be honest, if I get myself too wound up, this post will never end....and life is too short to keep all that negativity flowing.  However, I found that each time I tried to review Evil Dead, I started to veer off into rants and tantrums about these negative forces in the horror community and was unable to get to the meat and potatoes of the film.  So henceforth, you get this this rant.

And so I will leave you with this quote from J.R.R. Tolkien.  I think it sums everything up quite nicely.  Quite simply put:  No matter what form of art it is: film, music, literature, paint, sculpture, etc....someone put themselves into it.  It means something to them.  Maybe it doesn't speak to you personally, but that does not diminish the art in any way shape or form.  Hurling vile insults at it only shows your shortcomings and your own weaknesses.  Until you can produce a piece of similar art that can defy harsh criticism, shut the fuck up and get off your god-damned high horse, you self righteous bunch of whiny little bitches.

Okay.  That oughta do it.  Here's that quote I promised you:

“A man inherited a field in which was an accumulation of old stone, part of an older hall. Of the old stone some had already been used in building the house in which he actually lived, not far from the old house of his fathers. Of the rest he took some and built a tower. But his friends coming perceived at once (without troubling to climb the steps) that these stones had formerly belonged to a more ancient building. So they pushed the tower over, with no little labor, and in order to look for hidden carvings and inscriptions, or to discover whence the man's distant forefathers had obtained their building material. Some suspecting a deposit of coal under the soil began to dig for it, and forgot even the stones. They all said: 'This tower is most interesting.' But they also said (after pushing it over): 'What a muddle it is in!' And even the man's own descendants, who might have been expected to consider what he had been about, were heard to murmur: 'He is such an odd fellow! Imagine using these old stones just to build a nonsensical tower! Why did not he restore the old house? he had no sense of proportion.' But from the top of that tower the man had been able to look out upon the sea.” 
― J.R.R. Tolkien, Beowulf and the Critics

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