In which I gracefully ramble on...

Why do so many movies disappoint? The quality and substance is decisively lower and there's no reason in thinking it's getting any better. There were years in which I could actually pick as many as 30 great movies but the times have changed, if I'm lucky I find half that amount these days. I remember 1999, in which movies of startling originality came out every week- American Beauty, Being John Malkovich, Magnolia, Fight Club, The Sixth Sense, Boys Don't Cry to name a few. I find it somewhat disturbing that much of the blame is always layed down on the generalization that Americans are 'stupid' and the notion that everything has to do with the dumbing down of America. Just because well reviewed, smaller movies fail at the box office does not mean it is the public's fault for not listening to critical opinion. Movie critics can only tell you if a movie is good, they do not have the power to put your ass in the seat- contrary to what Roger Ebert thinks in his recent essay on The Hurt Locker's lack of Box Office. The best I can do is tell you what's good and what's worth seeing and mention that quality stuff IS in fact still out there- such as 500 Days Of Summer, Up & Public Enemies.

The days of having one great movie a week are long gone and so, our expectations need to be lowered. It isn't just in North America that civilization and art is declining. Look at the recent Paris Match- in which a nude Sharon Stone makes the cover with a headline title reading '50 and stunning' -Thanks to Glenn Kenny for the worthy example. It's not just happening here, it's happening everywhere and it's been happening for decades. Michael Jackson Dies and the press has a field day. GI Joe & Transformers come out, they skyrocket to the top of every country's box office. The sad truth is we are populated & pummeled by dumbed down art and dumbed down messages. We are a long way from Chaplin trying to get the Flower Girl- instead were in the Transformers era- where everything that's louder, bigger & without message is celebrated. Whereas anything deep, incisive and artful is dismissed as too boring or slow. Sadly, there's no reason to think this is going to change.