Do cinephiles watch blockbuster films?

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Wal-Mart may be the better example here, as it has had a more tangible effect on closing local mom&pop common goods stores.
I think McDonalds is the better example because Walmart is selling the same product as the mom and pop. So if I have a choice to buy a bottle of soda for $1 at Walmart as opposed to $2 at the mom and pop, I do.

If I am trying to decide between a cheap hamburger and a steak, I have to choose one or the other.



The trick is not minding
I like these comic book films in theory. I like to have fun. I don't like the recent trend of using these kinds of films as short-hand psychotherapy for middle-aged men. I don't like watching a comic book movie and looking over at some fat fanboy crying, "My dad didn't pay attention either."
I know you were being a tad facetious here but I can’t resist……
Hey, “fat fanboys” have feelings too, you know. We shouldn’t criticize them for their emotions simply because the movie reaches them on some emotional level.*

More seriously, it’s meant to evoke a certain emotion from that very fan base, which is fine, I’ve enjoyed plenty of the super hero films myself to varying degrees. I’ve stated my favorites (Superman, Nolan’s first two Batman films) because they didn’t pander to their fan base but elevated the material in a mature way. And as much as I’ve enjoyed the sub genre, it has now sadly saturated the market. It’s time to ease back on the phases.

* Please note I am not fat nor a fanboy.



I find that the people in my life that love the MCU think I hate it and those that hate it think I love it. Guess I need to pick a lane. Feels too much like how talking politics goes for me.



Welcome to the human race...
Why would someone "hate" this type of films:








I think it's probably some "hipster" edgelord mentality, i can get not liking something but hate, lol, are you serious?
It fundamentally comes down to the idea that the modern blockbuster is built from the ground up to favour commercial appeal over sheer artistry, which tends to result in films that are lacking in unique cinematic qualities or worthwhile substance because the powers that be are willing to take shortcuts to guarantee a perpetually profitable investment with minimal risk to that venture. That's the reason the MCU has become the current poster child for this phenomenon - it's turned out 24 films in the space of 13 years (for comparison, it took James Bond 53 years to reach the same number) that have become such perpetual cinematic events to the point where it doesn't even matter if the films themselves end up being good because people will pay just to keep up with the franchise anyway (which is true of older franchises, but it's reached saturation point with a cinematic universe involving multiple overlapping sub-franchises). If you've never seen an MCU film before, how well would [i]Infinity War[/i hold up on its own? At least Mission: Impossible at least has the novelty of seeing Tom Cruise do all manner of death-defying stunts for real even though the films are otherwise fairly flimsy. Even Inception can be said to suffer because of how it stretches itself between commerce and art - it's arguably smarter than the average blockbuster, but it's already been established that that's not a particularly high bar to clear (and there's also the matter of the usual Nolan criticisms about his...debatable effectiveness at actually handling human characters and emotions between the intricate setpieces and exposition of his films, which is liable to weaken his films more than anything else).

In any case, people can just not like it. Like I keep saying, even the tastiest peach in the world will still taste bad to someone who hates peaches.
__________________
I really just want you all angry and confused the whole time.



Yeah, sometimes. I have to admit that comix and superheroes are pretty much used up as far as I'm concerned, but otherwise, in non-plague times I do go to blockbusters, stand in line and buy snacks, even when I do expect to do a lot of eye-rolling. Sometimes they're fun, sometimes it's just good to get out and mingle with the Plebeians and sometimes I like to see what James Bond is up to.



To me, being a cinephile is just about loving movies. There's a way to watch movies that is cinephile-ish, regardless of what you're watching, and you can be a basic bitch after having watched everything Kurosawa, Tarkovsky and Kieslowsky directed. If all a person does is watch movies one after the other like a checklist, I would find less cinephile cred in them than someone who studies and analyses all the aspect of less prestigious movies.

After watching tons and tons of movies anyway, you learn to find your own groove and you're definitely going to start enjoying what a lot of people would consider trash.



Please Quote/Tag Or I'll Miss Your Responses
I don't use that term for myself.. I just say I love movies. I don't even use the word "film" or "motion picture". I've never used the term, "filmmaker" either.


I only go into a movie if I think it's going to be good. I don't want to deprive myself of pleasure, and if I hate a movie after 30 minutes, I turn it off, and wasted time, and probably won't see a movie for a while.


I seem to like and seek out movies in between. Not blockbusters, but not rare and obscure movies, either.



If you look at my Top 10 movies, you can decide if any of them are blockbusters? The most popular movie would be "One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest" I guess.



If I see a great movie that also was very commercial, I don't think to myself how the director must have diluted his message for the sake of sales, but instead, I look at is as a triumph for good taste. Hasn't been a triumph in a long time, though, unfortunately.



that's GOT to be a Blade Runner reference, huh?

The Spider-Man DVD lays open on its back, its case melting in the hot sun, trying to close itself, but it can't. Not without your help. But you're not helping.
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Last Great Movie Seen
Black Sunday (Bava, 1960)



I like these comic book films in theory. I like to have fun. I don't like the recent trend of using these kinds of films as short-hand psychotherapy for middle-aged men. I don't like watching a comic book movie and looking over at some fat fanboy crying, "My dad didn't pay attention either."
Is that a dig at Joker by any chance?



It fundamentally comes down to the idea that the modern blockbuster is built from the ground up to favour commercial appeal over sheer artistry, which tends to result in films that are lacking in unique cinematic qualities or worthwhile substance because the powers that be are willing to take shortcuts to guarantee a perpetually profitable investment with minimal risk to that venture. That's the reason the MCU has become the current poster child for this phenomenon - it's turned out 24 films in the space of 13 years (for comparison, it took James Bond 53 years to reach the same number) that have become such perpetual cinematic events to the point where it doesn't even matter if the films themselves end up being good because people will pay just to keep up with the franchise anyway (which is true of older franchises, but it's reached saturation point with a cinematic universe involving multiple overlapping sub-franchises). If you've never seen an MCU film before, how well would [i]Infinity War[/i hold up on its own? At least Mission: Impossible at least has the novelty of seeing Tom Cruise do all manner of death-defying stunts for real even though the films are otherwise fairly flimsy. Even Inception can be said to suffer because of how it stretches itself between commerce and art - it's arguably smarter than the average blockbuster, but it's already been established that that's not a particularly high bar to clear (and there's also the matter of the usual Nolan criticisms about his...debatable effectiveness at actually handling human characters and emotions between the intricate setpieces and exposition of his films, which is liable to weaken his films more than anything else).

In any case, people can just not like it. Like I keep saying, even the tastiest peach in the world will still taste bad to someone who hates peaches.
I know I have hit out at this criticism again and again, and people are understandably tired of it, but why should he handle human emotion if he doesn’t want to? He’s doing fine with his high-concept cold commercial stuff, why do people assume the “human touch” is needed? There’s always, what’s-her-name, Greta Gerwig for that sort of thing, but Nolan is going for spectacle and doesn’t want to focus on emotions, surely that can’t be judged as an objective shortcoming - it’s just an authorial preference.

I, for one, have been exhausted and sick of “emotions” and “humanity” and cheesiness in film for about a decade, so I find Nolan’s sleek matter-of-factness very appealing, and I’m sure there are others like me. It’s one thing to say you personally prefer more human touch-driven films, but I think, if anything, Nolan shows it’s not necessary to prioritise people over ideas to consistently turn out successful work. I am very well aware that the word “emotions” doesn’t have anything to do with characters in a film “acting emotional”, but I feel there’s too much of an emphasis put on that. Solipsistic films have a place on Earth too, and, if anything, solipsism is exactly what Inception is about, seeing as it’s about people trapped in their increasingly private dreams, so that approach fits its tone. I don’t even disagree with the “criticism” that Nolan doesn’t like to address human emotions, but I don’t quite see why it’s a criticism in the first place.



Thursday Next's Avatar
I never could get the hang of Thursdays.
It would be like if McDonalds was so popular that all but a few of the good restaurants in town closed down. More crap food, less good food. And all because crap food is so popular.
Now all restaurants are Taco Bell.



Welcome to the human race...
I know I have hit out at this criticism again and again, and people are understandably tired of it, but why should he handle human emotion if he doesn’t want to? He’s doing fine with his high-concept cold commercial stuff, why do people assume the “human touch” is needed? There’s always, what’s-her-name, Greta Gerwig for that sort of thing, but Nolan is going for spectacle and doesn’t want to focus on emotions, surely that can’t be judged as an objective shortcoming - it’s just an authorial preference.

I, for one, have been exhausted and sick of “emotions” and “humanity” and cheesiness in film for about a decade, so I find Nolan’s sleek matter-of-factness very appealing, and I’m sure there are others like me. It’s one thing to say you personally prefer more human touch-driven films, but I think, if anything, Nolan shows it’s not necessary to prioritise people over ideas to consistently turn out successful work. I am very well aware that the word “emotions” doesn’t have anything to do with characters in a film “acting emotional”, but I feel there’s too much of an emphasis put on that. Solipsistic films have a place on Earth too, and, if anything, solipsism is exactly what Inception is about, seeing as it’s about people trapped in their increasingly private dreams, so that approach fits its tone. I don’t even disagree with the “criticism” that Nolan doesn’t like to address human emotions, but I don’t quite see why it’s a criticism in the first place.
I think it's less that he doesn't address human emotion at all and more that he tends to fumble the bag when he does. The best blockbusters are able to underline their spectacle with well-crafted displays of the humanity underneath - Jaws was credited as the first blockbuster and one would argue that it holds up at least as much due to its characters and their definition/interplay as its monster-movie thrills (possibly even more so). Conversely, it's not like Nolan is thoroughly incapable of pulling it off - I'd argue his better films (Memento, The Prestige, Inception) are the ones that have a thorough grasp on how to balance emotion with spectacle (especially considering the comparatively small scale of the first two and the latter managing to make good use of his self-consciousness to build a narrative, especially compared to how he handled similar emotional ground to far lesser effect in Interstellar). I've certainly seen defences of Nolan that will argue for his work on emotional grounds rather than handwave the ostensible lack of it as a necessary sacrifice for the sake of spectacle, but what's the point in building these blown-out high-minded epics if the people within aren't really worth caring about one way or another? I mean, we just got Tenet and that's a pretty good argument for why you've got to be careful when trying to balance the "human element" with whatever outlandish cinematic concepts you want to put to film next.



Pleased with the turn of events on this page.


Now if we can do the same thing for Body Girls...


*gets banned*


WARNING: spoilers below
Now available in a Peekarama DVD double feature from the fine folks at Vinegar Syndrome.



I think animation is much better suited for dream stories and that these two films are proof of that concept. I really enjoyed Inception, I just think Paprika is a much better film. Agree to disagree.

Re MCU, I don't have an issue - did you read my post? I loved Avengers, but there are just so many of these films and I've had other films I wanted to watch more on my list plus it seems like a huge time commitment with so many of these coming out all the time. I will get to them and judge them on their own merits, but I don't have an educated opinion since I haven't seen them.
I disagree with what you have said, but no problem.

What? The Raimi Spider Man films were unloved by the general audience? Sit in the corner, dude.
What I mean is that they seem to be more of a filmmaker project compared to mcu films

It fundamentally comes down to the idea that the modern blockbuster is built from the ground up to favour commercial appeal over sheer artistry, which tends to result in films that are lacking in unique cinematic qualities or worthwhile substance because the powers that be are willing to take shortcuts to guarantee a perpetually profitable investment with minimal risk to that venture. That's the reason the MCU has become the current poster child for this phenomenon - it's turned out 24 films in the space of 13 years (for comparison, it took James Bond 53 years to reach the same number) that have become such perpetual cinematic events to the point where it doesn't even matter if the films themselves end up being good because people will pay just to keep up with the franchise anyway (which is true of older franchises, but it's reached saturation point with a cinematic universe involving multiple overlapping sub-franchises). If you've never seen an MCU film before, how well would [i]Infinity War[/i hold up on its own? At least Mission: Impossible at least has the novelty of seeing Tom Cruise do all manner of death-defying stunts for real even though the films are otherwise fairly flimsy. Even Inception can be said to suffer because of how it stretches itself between commerce and art - it's arguably smarter than the average blockbuster, but it's already been established that that's not a particularly high bar to clear (and there's also the matter of the usual Nolan criticisms about his...debatable effectiveness at actually handling human characters and emotions between the intricate setpieces and exposition of his films, which is liable to weaken his films more than anything else).

In any case, people can just not like it. Like I keep saying, even the tastiest peach in the world will still taste bad to someone who hates peaches.
At the end of the day, it's just... a film.

So why bother go all the extreme analytical criticism, just take things for what they are lol.