Sunday, January 24, 2010

Whatcha Callin' Pretentious Hoss?

We've all seen movies we wish we could un-watch. I understand that, I do. In fact, I'd respect a reviewer saying that Antichrist was just too, too awful to sit through.


Declaring a film "pretentious" because you didn't understand the allegory, and it made you uncomfortable is pathetic. Reading the review, there's an underlying hostility aimed at discrediting the personally inaccessible as "arty", in much the same way "elitist" was batted around as an accusation during the last election. "Art film followers" sounds a little too much like the "fellow travelers" smear.

Thank goodness he didn't bring a date. He brought a co-worker though- the guy who wrote a rather long, self-congratulatory article for having finished an entire Stephen King novel to review (and not because the novel was unreadable, but because it was long) and celebrated with a "fist pump" (whatever the hell a "fist pump" is). I'm glad he brought his colleague along, if only for the following quote:

" my colleague Micah Mertes observed, "Antichrist" is too arty for the "Saw" audience..."

You know, I'll bet that was von Trier's goal-making a film that would be accessible to the Saw audience. The film may be horrific, but it isn't a horror film. I would expect someone that is paid to review film for a newspaper to understand that distinction.

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