Friday, August 20, 2004

In last weeks Entertainment Weekly, Stephen King wrote a few words about summer movies, and their oft times mindless nature. His feelings on the subject all-but mirror my own.

He says "I sneer at people who sneer at summer movies." Which pretty accurately sums up my feelings, but he goes on to say (basically) that reviewers hand out great, four-star review these day far too easy. Now that is something I disagree with.

Yes, I do think reviewers hand out favorable review to almost anything these days, and yes some "four-star" films are barely even two stars. The thing is, as someone who loves movies (as does King, just listen, he'll tell you), any type of movie, I can make the distinction that there are different categories of "four-star films."

Personally, I'd never go on a four-star scale, but since that is the case I'm dealing with, it's what I'll use. Is Spider-Man 2 a four-star film? In my eyes, most certainly. It has it's faults, yes, but for a comic book junkie like myself, it's almost perfect. It's fun, it's action-packed, and it's even got something resembling a plot. Now, on the other hand, there's a film classic like Casablanca. A Four-Star Movie? Oh, you bet. It's the greatest movie ever made, and in my eyes is far superior to Citizen Kane (another four-starrer, heralded as the greatest movie of all time). Yet I can clearly make the distinction between the two, spider-Man and Casablanca that is.

To me movies are like songs. There's something to be appreciated in almost every one, even the mindless bubble gum pop you are bombarded with on the radio. There are songs that make me think about the meaning of life, and then there are songs that get my toes a-tappin'. Why shouldn't I equally love both of them, yet still make the distinction that one is infinitely more important than the other.

It's a small line to walk, yes, but I think it's one that alot of people don't even attempt to cross. Which is too bad, because the view over here is wonderful.

The bottom line, King is right, far too many people look down there noses at mindless summer fare, and like him, it disgusts me. I do not want every movie I see to give me the meaning of my existence, or to make me cry, sometimes I want to forget I'm alive and just be engulfed in this blow em up action flik. Yet I can still say Die Hard is a four-star movie, as well as Shashank Redemption, and realize that one is not the other, and they are to be loved equally, even if one of them will change the world while the other just offer entertainment for entertainment's sake.


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