Cracked Article on Apocalyptic Movies

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Re: Cracked Article on Apocalyptic Movies

Postby DetritusMaximus » Fri Jun 06, 2014 11:46 pm

MWFV8 wrote:
DetritusMaximus wrote:
MWFV8 wrote:It doesn't matter if it makes sense. Movies concepts aren't created to make sense. The whole point is you suspend plausibility to witness something compelling and ultimately enjoyable.
To me it matters. The excuse that it is 'just a movie' makes it easy to accept lazy writing and over the top action/effects that undermine the experience.


I think you're getting premise and story mixed up here. A lazy story or a movie that overcompensates with sfx is bad regardless of premise. The Cracked article writer is right to suggest the premise for Road Warrior is flawed, but the story makes for a great action movie with a deep meaning.

It doesn't matter which one you pick, too many times movie makers will 'stylize' action in such a way that it becomes irrational and conflicts with the story. Take the Matrix for example. The stylized, physics defying action in that movie works by virtue of the premise (virtual world and conscious control of it), but how many other movies have used that style just for its own sake? They become more cartoon like and it creates a disconnect. Or cop movies where the hero cop is so much of a loose cannon that any real cop would have been long since suspended on psychiatric grounds. And all explosions are big gasoline fireballs. There is a whole film making vocabulary that people take for granted because it's the lazy way to make a movie and you don't need an original idea.
But for that one flaw, Road Warrior is pretty darn consistent with realism (notice I didn't say reality). From one end to the other it looks like it really could happen that way.
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Re: Cracked Article on Apocalyptic Movies

Postby MWFV8 » Sat Jun 07, 2014 1:05 am

Be the change you want to see in the world, DetritusMaximus. Get writing or directing and show everybody how it's done.

It seems you've concluded with the point I was originally making.
"Wrong, we fight for a belief. I stay."
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Re: Cracked Article on Apocalyptic Movies

Postby DetritusMaximus » Sat Jun 07, 2014 1:19 pm

Now that's harsh....I don't have time for more hobbies and there is so much criticizing to do!

I understand your point. I just think that too often the comment that 'it's just a movie' dismisses genuine criticism of avoidable flaws or weak (or cynical) filmmaking.
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Re: Cracked Article on Apocalyptic Movies

Postby MWFV8 » Sun Jun 08, 2014 1:02 am

DetritusMaximus wrote:I just think that too often the comment that 'it's just a movie' dismisses genuine criticism of avoidable flaws or weak (or cynical) filmmaking.


I do get that.

The issue at the moment is the slow demise of the DVD market. When we buy DVD's we pay for a license to watch a movie at our pleasure. Combined with the fact it's a tangible asset, we pay quite a lot for them, the only middle men being the retailer, and the profits high for the distributor. When we all used to buy mainly DVD's, it meant a studio could fund a slate of movies that consisted of one or two tentpole movies that had to return massive profit, a few mid-budget movies that were more niche but would hopefully at least break even and a few risky low budget films that were written off as loss leaders. Back then you could have a box office flop that went on to become a DVD success, and even mediocre movies tended to make good profit in the long term.

But video on demand doesn't give that safety net. The customer pays for one screening, they don't buy anything tangible and the streaming service is more empowered. The result is a relatively minuscule profit compared to DVD.

So the result of this is huge pressure to make maximum return at the box office. That's why we see blockbuster after blockbuster with marketing budgets equal to their production costs. Franchises work because they cut through the marketing noise. Big names work because they are brands.

Meanwhile the theatre going demographic has been changing. With huge flatscreen TV's and video on the demand, there's less reason for adults to pay through the nose to sit in a dark room having popcorn thrown at them. The market now is young adults who want rollercoaster movies and to walk out buzzing, not moved, not educated, not reflective, just on a high.

Cut to the studio execs and they're now operating in a comparatively cut throat business environment. Their studios now less personal and more a corporation they are just doing everything they can to avoid risk. If a movie is a blockbuster then great, if it flops then they still made all the right choices. Studios now only commission tent poles and buy in anything smaller from independent production companies who've secured bankable talent and part funding.

So now you've got to make a movie to sell a movie, and in the indie scene nothing is getting any easier. Production is more expensive than ever and people want to get paid. There's crazy competition, more independent films are released in the US each year alone than the average person can watch in their lifetime. Few want to fund, and those that do don't want to speculate much because they know how limited the market now is. So those mid-budget movies that forgive mass market appeal and need a bit of production value are lost in the ether.

As a result, the term "it's just a movie" encapsulates so much more. It means being as risk adverse as possible and pleasing a young hyperactive audience.
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Re: Cracked Article on Apocalyptic Movies

Postby DetritusMaximus » Sun Jun 08, 2014 9:14 am

You are spot on with everything in your post. Add in the desire to replicate the video game experience and obligatory product tie-in and that distorts the movie narrative to fit the game structure which almost by definition means that plot or character driven stories are secondary to an action driven story. All of this leads to more 'suspension of disbelief' as the action gets more dramatic and 'bigger'.
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