I know, you've said so before. It's not a Tree of Life situation. I don't think as many are raving about the flick as you're saying. And many, many critics think Force Awakens comes refreshingly amazingly close to touching two of the greatest movies of all time. They don't say it does, but it gives them that special unique Star Wars-y feeling that the other two did. That's not so insignificant. Plus, mass entertainments are almost never called masterpieces unless they double as an art movie, ala Fury Road. I haven't even seen The Revenant, I'm just talking purely about consensus.Allstar wrote:How many critics have called TFA a masterpiece? Many critics have for The Revenant.
That's my point.
Pretentious, as I'm using it in this specific context, refers to over-ambitious I'm so art masturbation. It's mostly about tone and presentation. Let me give you an example. I have a lot of friends in music. One of them introduces himself to me. "Hey, I'm X. I'm trying to make my way to do music for a living, it's a blast I love it." Another says "Hey, I'm X. I'm an artist and musician." Well, to most people (maybe not to you) the latter comes off as grating pretentiousness. It's a status, self-acclaim thing. When people ask me for a living I always say I'm in insurance but moonlight as a critic on a small site I run. It's by design I introduce myself that way—I know how wildly pretentious introducing yourself as a "film critic "sounds. Believe me, people never react "well" when somebody tells them that. I've seen it happen a bunch with friends in the press.RIFA wrote: The argument that something is pretentious usually has it's birth in personal envy/jealousy.
The movies that are indeed pretentious are always obviously so. Neorealism is not pretentious filmmaking. It's part of the world of art-film mostly and Inarritu is just a talented motherfucker when it comes to it. Let's not confuse one's ability and tact with him being pretentious about the medium he's working in.
I mean... if you really wanna call The Revenant and Birdman pretentious, then be fair about it and call Children of Men, Drive, 2001, 432, and anything done by Bergman, Fellini, Godard or Tarkovsky pretentious too. I mean, you can even claim Interstellar/Inception are pretentious.
Pretentious must be one of the most poorly used words when it comes to painting an artistic effort.
Innatitu runs around town talking about finding truth and finding his truth, and how to find his truth he had to run into the middle of nowhere and do all this crazy extreme shit. His whole approach is high and mighty, from my throne unto the rest. Pretentious, to me, as I'm using it now, mostly refers to trying to have a level of artistic merit and depth like SUPER hard, like really really hard, but in a way that isn't natural or organic or fluid to you and your art and that you don't pull off. Maybe I'd feel differently about him if I thought he was a genuinely great artist/filmmaker and made a single great movie. But I don't think any of those things. But when I hear Tarkovsky, Bergman, or Kubrick I'm always "wow." They're hitting something pretty legitimate.
Final example: Nolan's business about "unconventional sound mixes" in Interstellar is pretentious in the same way I'm using it right now. Using IMAX, and all the trouble and expense it is, I would not call pretentious. It's as much about how much you pull off your lofty intent as your attitude. It's a combination of things.
FYI I'm still crazy pumped for Revenant and for all I know it'll wind up in my top few of the year.