Why people hate popular films or directors?

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It's like all popular entertainment. A certain number of people will dislike it on artistic grounds, some will dislike it BECAUSE it's popular and some will dislike it based on some sort of politics or "demographic" attitude. Throw in the fact that a certain percent of Americans are contrarian in disposition and get a strange sort of pleasure in not liking things. All that adds up to a sizable proportion of Americans, who HAVE to dislike the movie because of Hanks or Spielberg or whatever.

I've gotten that way somewhat about superhero movies....seen so GD many of those over the years, that I have a built-in attitude that there's nothing anybody can say about Batman or Robin that I need to know. It's similar to Star Wars or any of the other megabucks franchises that continue to be re-treaded every couple of years.

My wish for the movie industry, one I'm sure will be unfulfilled, is that they could come up with some new characters or plot lines. The problem I see is that, more than ever, with huge production costs, at some point a movie is nothing but an investment. People toss in some millions with the expectation that they will make more millions in return, so it's not surprising that producers want to make something that's a sure winner and will put butts in seats or credit card numbers in the streaming service. Taking a risk, or being innovative is left to the low-budget people. The not-surprising outcome is what we see....another Batman do-over or, once again, Godzilla or Kong stomping on a city, only this time 100 times as much server power went into image rendering and we don't have an actor inside a rubber suit being Kong or yet another scowl coming out of a Batman mask.

I know that I'm cynical about this, but am I wrong?

I'm not upset about this, not even surprised, just doing some serious eye-rolling.



Disliked it (same as only god forgives)
Why? I ask out of genuine curiosity--I liked it but understand that others won't. I'm interested to know what about it you didn't like.

I thought it was interesting because it is, more or less, a relationship movie cloaked in a creepy pagan blood and sex ritual movie. Come for the blood and sex, stay for what it says about toxic relationships, that kind of thing. I kind of love how it drags out each element of horror, like its boiling a frog (and the frog is you).

Anyway, what people like or don't like isn't very interesting to me, but why or how they like or don't like a thing is.



Why? I ask out of genuine curiosity--I liked it but understand that others won't. I'm interested to know what about it you didn't like.

I thought it was interesting because it is, more or less, a relationship movie cloaked in a creepy pagan blood and sex ritual movie. Come for the blood and sex, stay for what it says about toxic relationships, that kind of thing. I kind of love how it drags out each element of horror, like its boiling a frog (and the frog is you).

Anyway, what people like or don't like isn't very interesting to me, but why or how they like or don't like a thing is.
Thin paper plot, pretentious, bad directing, one dimensional character. An absolute mess of a film, that bores me.

I don't know man you sound pretty upset. Maybe take a breather?
I'm not upset or mad. Again, I apologize if I was too vocal. Didn’t want to insult or refer anyone in a lame way, I just said why I don’t agree with this modus operandi and I personally don’t like this arrogant idea that the blockbuster or popular one is less than what people think and the unknown needs to be prop up.



As someone who’s had a bad trip before I think opinions of Midsommar from people who haven’t is inconsequential.

Change my mind



What did you think of Midsommar when you saw it?
Disliked it (same as only god forgives)
Dislike is just a polite way of saying I hated it. Just saying. Oh, I don't like Bergman films either. Then again I hate Tarantino's movies.



I am an irrational hater and pseudo-intellectual snob. I embrace my hatred and started avoiding Hollywood films in the late Eighties when the Hollywood blockbuster became the principal movie made in said 'burg. The studios were catering to an international audience so movies with snappy dialogue were not being made, they didn't want to take risk on movies only a small section of the viewing public would like. They wanted every film to be Jaws. I liked Jaws but not every film should be summer fluff. I started avoiding my local theater and went to art houses. I stopped going to the arthouse in the 2000's because I didn't want to pay for parking I went back to the local theater. Now Marvel movies are fun but they don't have much to say. I have said before I am a grown-up and this kind of kid fare mostly doesn't appeal to me. I have nothing against kid fare per se but don't tell me the Marvel movies are for grown-ups. They ain't and that is categorical.
You're my new favorite MoFo!



You're my new favorite MoFo!
Why thank you! Who knew ire would help me make friends.



Dislike is just a polite way of saying I hated it. Just saying. Oh, I don't like Bergman films either. Then again I hate Tarantino's movies.
Not exactly. I like Lynch but I hate blue velvet. I dislike lotr trilogy but I don’t hate em. Just not my cup of tea, but since I believe in objectivity, I know they’re considered great by the majority of intelligent film critics.

I love Tarantino films though



minds his own damn business
As someone who’s had a bad trip before I think opinions of Midsommar from people who haven’t is inconsequential.
Heh.
WARNING: spoilers below
I watched it on mushrooms, myself.


Since I'm not sure where else this thread can go at this point, I'll take the opportunity to give a review of Midsommar. I think I gave it a 7.5/10 at the time.

I definitely don't understand any complaints about the film's gorgeous cinematography. In the sense of 'direction' as setting a compositional pace, Aster is already remarkably assured.

The characters are pretty thin, except for Dani (again, seems weird to single her out). Everyone else is pretty much a plot device.
WARNING: spoilers below
The fate of Christian may have been more compelling if he had been empathetic in the least, but, of course, we're basically rooting for the inevitable after the first 20 minutes or so.


Like a lot of modern horror films, I get annoyed by a certain overindulgence in despair, the unearned kind that suggests confusing darkness for depth.
WARNING: spoilers below
I thought that the entire intro sequence was gratuitous, a technical feat for technique's sake, and I don't think the film would have lost an ounce of its impact had this information been conveyed through dialogue exposition, ie Dani/Christian's phone call.


Now a quibble regarding the Wicker Man allusions (note to Ezrangel - not the Nicolas Cage movie):
WARNING: spoilers below
I would think it unfair to directly compare the two, as I'm a pretty solid fan of Wicker Man. But Midsommar begs the comparison, in the film and the marketing, so I don't really have a choice. It might be obvious that I don't think it's close. But the reason may be that one of my favorite aspects of Wicker Man is how the plot of the film mirrors the occult archetypes that it presents - Sgt Howie is a Knight (virtuous), of a King (law officer) a Virgin (naively innocent) and a Fool (unaware of the process he's setting into motion). In this sense, the plot follows the logic of its occult/pagan symbolism and becomes an applicable parable for this belief system. It doesn't simply use occult/pagan iconography as exotic or eerie decor, the substance of the film directly addresses the substance of the symbolism.

Conversely, I don't see anything like this symbolic integrity in Midsommar. It feels more like an example of using these pagan rituals, some like the Attestupa being factual, more in a way to create an exotic sense of dread rather than exploring the belief system behind it. The cult and its arcane symbols are used more to create a sinister, slightly satanic atmosphere, meaning that it is the kind of superficial decoration that most occult horror films resort to using.


Finally, a comparison to The Witch:
WARNING: spoilers below
an almost equally evocative film. Both of them have seen debates on their endings being either triumphant or tragic. I fall on the latter side of that debate. I don't fault the films' ambiguity on the issue, I love ambiguous endings myself. But it has made me a little averse to some of either film's fans.
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minds his own damn business
The Swedish linguist Adolf Noreen started questioning the myth at the end of the nineteenth century, and it is now generally accepted among researchers that the practice of suicide precipices never existed.
Oops. Probably should have wiki'd first.



Like a lot of modern horror films, I get annoyed by a certain overindulgence in despair, the unearned kind that suggests confusing darkness for depth.
This is pretty much my problem with Aster, and it's a real shame because he's obviously very talented. But I just can't watch his stuff as it's currently constituted.



The trick is not minding
The Wickerman, as well as The Witch, are both great at developing a sense of dread, a feeling of impending doom.
Midsommar was decent, with a few moments like that, but cheated at times.



I don't know how far it disarrays from what OP means, as to briefly see mofos personal justification here for being "snob" or whatever-related, but he/she wrote "attack" which I believe in a sense really means to throw a shade with belittlement-- not the legit opinionated of a gentle person.

This probably more like a (quite) vocal minority and never a consensus but feel pretty often get thrown in the mix.
There times I guess had parodied this move here, like "Meh, so you like lousy [insert popular thing]? go watch [etcetc] and educate yourself", a stereotypical childish, condescending comment that one may have encountered here or other platforms.
__________________
"Фильм призван вызвать духовную волну, а не взращивать идолопоклонников."



Midsommar has an 83% critics score on Rotten Tomatoes.


Which is higher than Seven (81%) and Fight Club (79%).


Not that it should matter, obviously, but I feel like I should win something here.
Click the number and you get the 10 scale...

Seven 7.9
Midsommer 7.6
Fight Club 7.4



This is pretty much my problem with Aster, and it's a real shame because he's obviously very talented. But I just can't watch his stuff as it's currently constituted.
Well, I wouldn't say that one of my (many) problems with something like Hereditary is necessarily that it was too dark, but the specific way it was dark; you see, while I've said this before (of course), it still bears repeating that the film's idea of combining the darkness of a Supernatural Horror film with a domestic-focused Drama was promising in concept, it didn't work in execution, as both aspects worked to undermine the other, particularly with what Aster did with Charlie, where we're supposed to feel
WARNING: spoilers below
the tragedy of her sudden death in the film, but her characterization as a cliched, creepy Horror movie kid simply made it impossible to care about her in that manner; it'd be like trying to feel sad for Damien in The Omen if that film killed him off, you know? I mean, it would've made sense if Annie had been lashing out at Peter partly because she's mad at herself for not feeling that sad about Charlie's death, which is a character turn the film seemed to be setting up with her own lack of grief for her difficult mother ("Should I be sadder?"), but the fact that that never comes to fruition speaks to the inconsistency and overall sloppiness of Aster's approach, I think, and is another dead giveaway that he had never made a movie before.



Well, I wouldn't say that one of my (many) problems with something like Hereditary is necessarily that it was too dark, but the specific way it was dark; you see, while I've said this before (of course), it still bears repeating that the film's idea of combining the darkness of a Supernatural Horror film with a domestic-focused Drama was promising in concept, it didn't work in execution, as both aspects worked to undermine the other, particularly with what Aster did with Charlie, where we're supposed to feel
WARNING: spoilers below
the tragedy of her sudden death in the film, but her characterization as a cliched, creepy Horror movie kid simply made it impossible to care about her in that manner; it'd be like trying to feel sad for Damien in The Omen if that film killed him off, you know? I mean, it would've made sense if Annie had been lashing out at Peter partly because she's mad at herself for not feeling that sad about Charlie's death, which is a character turn the film seemed to be setting up with her own lack of grief for her difficult mother ("Should I be sadder?"), but the fact that that never comes to fruition speaks to the inconsistency and overall sloppiness of Aster's approach, I think, and is another dead giveaway that he had never made a movie before.

WARNING: "HEREDITARY SPOILERS" spoilers below
Not sure why the audience needs to empathize with Charley, for the audience to understand her mother's grief. There are certain things a director doesn't need to inform us about. They are taken as a given. Mothers love their children. This is such a universally understood truth it feels weird needing it to be articulated on screen for us. I'd be equally baffled if you need to see your characters eat at some point from fear they might starve to death before the movie ends.



Collette's performance is all we should need to make the emotions of the film real for us. I wouldn't care if Charley was a pet rock. As long as we understand it is her child, the emotions she feels show us all we need to understand the pain. There is no reason to muddy the waters with our own personal feelings towards her child. Because we are watching as members of the audience, we naturally know more than she does, which includes the true nature of her child. To take this knowledge, that Charley is evil, and hold it against the emotional core of the film, just seems a little weird.



Movie Forums Squirrel Jumper
I find this surprising as I thought people seem to usually want to watch the popular movies nowadays and do not give the less popular movies enough of a chance, or that is how it seems. Whenever I recommend a movie to someone that is an independent or foreign film they do not seem interested, but if it's the popular blockbuster that got a lot of advertising, then they want to see it.



I’ve read through the Ari Aster bit of this thread with great interest. Two lots of two cents from me.

First, I believe Yoda and some others have previously commented on the ‘glorification of despair’ that Aster is becoming known for. I appreciate the criticism, but to me this is by no means a trait unique to Aster, and a part of me thinks that to dismiss the deliberate build-up of despair as ‘excessive’ or lacking purpose is to dismiss authorial intent. I, for one, remember having similar thoughts about Gaspar Noe’s I Stand Alone (1998). It seemed like a never-ending exercise in despair porn with little purpose.

But the thing is, if you take the view that the main purpose of horror is to entertain whilst evoking existential dread in the viewer, then why should this be a problem and why the constant search for a ‘deeper’ meaning to a film? I recently rewatched Funny Games with friends less well-versed in horror than I, and it’s the ‘excessive’ and ‘meaningless’ dread buildup part that they found most disturbing. They were on edge.

Isn’t that why we watch horror? I do believe that this feeling of despair is in a sense integral to the genre. People watch erotic films to feel aroused. I would argue horror exists to evoke despair, then Adrenalin, then despair.

Quite possible that Aster has overdone it and the despair element loses impact for that, or that his execution is clumsy or not nuanced enough, but I think he’s on the right path if he wants to do the Funny Games-type isn’t-this-simply-awful-and-getting-worse-by-the-hour kind of films.

Now, my second two cents.
Aster did with Charlie, where we're supposed to feel
WARNING: spoilers below
the tragedy of her sudden death in the film, but her characterization as a cliched, creepy Horror movie kid simply made it impossible to care about her in that manner; it'd be like trying to feel sad for Damien in The Omen if that film killed him off, you know?
I found this very interesting re: Charlie. I often wonder about the mechanics and supposed logic of empathy in cinema,
WARNING: spoilers below
especially when it comes to ‘evil’ characters.
I guess I personally just don’t see the relationship between empathy and what you see objectively happening with the child/character. But that’s definitely due to my own share of weirdness. To my mind, you feel whatever you feel due to whatever is actually happening to the character, regardless if the person is likeable or not. And that’s not me playing the devil’s advocate, I just don’t see the big deal about empathising with characters, i.e. being able to feel as if we are them.

And re: Damien and Charlie, I always thought life must be very bizarre for them, not being able to relate to people, feeling left out of society,
WARNING: spoilers below
having that one connection to a demon to turn to.
That’s very isolating. Doesn’t seem to me like reason enough not to empathise, if we indeed must empathise with characters to maintain interest. (I would argue not.)

I’ve read pretty much every comment on Joker here on MoFo, probably, and though I largely agree that the film is far from perfect, I do sympathise with Arthur just because he is isolated from the world. That’s not his fault and that’s what the author is trying to say, I feel. I don’t need to ‘like’ him for that. Same with Travis Bickle.

There’s also the distinction between ‘empathise’ and ‘sympathise’, feels to me like they’re being conflated a bit.

May (2002) and especially Christine (2016) seem similar to me in that way, in the sense that the character is not likeable, but surely it’s easy to understand their state of isolation even if we don’t ‘like’ them? I think it was tough for Charlie to exist in a context where people expected her to show ‘normal’ human emotion when she simply couldn’t. I really like the scene when Annie is kind of probing Charlie about how she’s feeling after the funeral. ‘Do you feel sad?’, etc. I have experienced that so many times. People just assume that you have to react to things in a certain way, show empathy and emotion, and if you don’t, then you, in turn, are not deserving of sympathy. Isn’t that ironic?

I agree with this:
WARNING: "HEREDITARY SPOILERS" spoilers below
Not sure why the audience needs to empathize with Charley, for the audience to understand her mother's grief. There are certain things a director doesn't need to inform us about. They are taken as a given.
But I also feel we are perfectly free, if we want to, to empathise with Charlie too. Can’t remember which postmodern philosopher said this, but empathy is a choice. You could very well decide to walk in the shoes of The Other, overcome the alienation and feel what this person feels, if you wanted to.