Posts tagged Screenings

Are all Film Critics Whiny Douchebags?

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I’ve been reviewing comics, books, and movies for HorrorTalk for a little over a year now. A few months back I started getting invited to a few screenings. They’ve always been in the city so I miss a lot of them, but when I can combine it with a trip down there for work, it ends up fitting together very well. I appreciate that I’ve been added to these distribution lists and try to attend as many as I can.

I was in the city today for the IAB MIXX conference and was hoping I’d be able to hit up a screening afterwards. As of this morning, there was nothing scheduled, but fortunately I got an email during one of the panels about a new one that was just added at 4 PM. Great! I set it up and ended up getting there about a half hour early. There were a few other reviewers there already and most of them seemed to know each other. I busied myself with my phone and a book but I couldn’t help but overhear their complaints. That’s all that was said. These people (mostly older, mind you), just bitched and complained for a good half hour about everything in the film critic business. They were annoyed that a previous screening started late. They were mad that they don’t get screeners for everything. They hated this movie and that movie. They were furious that one company stopped sending guest passes (meaning that they could go see the movie with a friend). It went on and on. The only good thing that I heard was one of them say that they saw the new movie, 50/50 and it was good. Nothing more was said. Just that it was good.

This boggled my mind. These people are getting to see movies for free and [some of them, although I have a feeling most of them] are getting paid to write a quick review of it and they have the audacity to complain about it? Your jobs are cake-walks! If I could review stuff for a living, I would do it in a heartbeat but the fact of the matter is that it just doesn’t pay the bills. I’m grateful that I’m sent things to review or invited to screenings because I genuinely like doing it. Yes, I’ve had my fair share of bad movies, books, and comics, but I still enjoy the whole process. These critics seemed like they didn’t even like movies anymore. They just whined the whole time. I hope I never get that jaded about this. Fortunately for me if that day ever comes I can just stop doing it.

On the Subject of Reviewing

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I’ve been reviewing a ton of stuff for HorrorTalk recently. What started as just comics has branched into movies and books as well. I’ve had the pleasure of reading and seeing some great stuff and I’ve questioned why I was doing this after reading and watching some horribly made entertainment. I’m a big supporter of independent filmmaking and publishing but doing something without the help of a major studio or publishing house is no excuse for laziness. I’ve read too many books recently that are just poorly edited. People today seem to rely too much on the spellcheck tool in Microsoft Word. Simple mistakes like using the wrong version of There / They’re / Their or just using a wrong word altogether pop up all too frequently in these works and it’s getting increasingly frustrating to read through them. If I was getting something published and I was asking someone to pay money for my product I would proof read the shit out of that book. I’d have friends read it and give me honest feedback and look for mistakes because I wouldn’t want to be put in a position where I’d look foolish, nor would I want someone to feel cheated if they bought my book and it was filled with glaring errors.

On the plus side of all this, I’ve recently been invited to a few press screenings which has been really cool. Last week I saw a double feature of Black Death and I Saw the Devil. Next week I’ll be seeing Hobo With a Shotgun.

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