WARNING: The name of my blog is not a joke. In the kind of reviews I'll usually be doing, I won't just tell you whether I liked a movie, I'll be going into detail as to what I did or did not like about it. Many plot details will often end up being disclosed. If you haven't seen a movie yet, you might want to avoid reading my review of it on Blog.com and Tumblr. For those who are just looking for movie suggestions, usually rentals (note that most of the movies I review were seen some while ago), I'll have briefer, spoiler-free reviews over on Tribe.
This might get fleshed out sooner than the rest of this site. Those familiar with my review sites elsewhere know that my reviews don't tend to be just simple recommendations. Should you watch this movie or not? I don't know, and couldn't. We've never met. I don't know what's enjoyable for you and what's not.
That's a key point. If you saw "The Day After Tomorrow" and enjoyed it, that's great. Seriously, zero snark on that one. It wasn't my favorite movie, as you might guess by reading my review of it, but if reading that review makes you feel a little embarassed about the good time you just had, that's never my intention. Such a review is a purely personal reaction to what I've just seen, and not a completely serious one. Picture somebody loitering in the kitchen with his brothers, talking about a movie that he has just seen while the conversation meanders, and you might better understand my point of view.
In any essay about anything, I'm never going to tell the whole story, because one can't do that in an essay on finite length. I have to pick and choose what I'm going to share, and in writing a review like this first one, I pick and choose in such a way as to introduce an element of self-satire. Was the movie really that bad, as I viewed it? Not completely. It had moments that worked, and the special effects were eye catching enough that the film held my attention for a while. But, while I'll admit that I pushed that review a little over the top for mildly comedic effect, the points on which I expressed dissatisfaction were ones that, for me, were serious ones, and those were what the review was about.
To talk about the isolated scenes that I did like would be to distract the reader from the point I was making, not really the right choice to make in a short piece. Still, I am conscious of the fact that by leaving out the mention of those scenes, I introduce an element of untruth by ommission, my commentary becoming a little harsher than it would in that logically impossible perfect world, in which any shade of meaning may be conveyed in as few short words as one wishes. I deal with this limitation of the form, in part, by admitting to myself and the reader that I'm just having fun, and that utter perfection is neither promised nor attempted.
The confession is implicit in the tone I take.
The question that one poses, merely by having a review site, is why anybody should care about what one thinks. You come to my site, and here I am, this person you've probably never heard of, and I tell you to go see a movie. Are you going to do that, stake $10.50 of your probably scarce and hard earned cash and a few hours of your limited leisure time just on the say-so of somebody who, while maintaining that he deserves your trust, hasn't done anything to earn it? Why would you have such faith in this stranger as to do that?
I don't ask you to do so, or certainly won't expect you to do so, having seen only one review. As the number of reviews I've posted grows, and the probability that you will have seen a few of the movies I've reviewed goes up, perhaps there is less of an issue of trust, because you can compare your notes with mine and see how well our preferences coincide. But that offers the promise of great tedium, does it not, with you wading through page after page of thumb ups and thumb downs to make that comparison? I don't ask you to do that.
Reviews for me become an excuse for essay writing and free-associating play. If I review a coffeehouse, instead of just telling you that I like the atmosphere, maybe I'll do a photoessay about the place and let you see the visuals for yourself, instead of just asking you to take my word about the lovely view I enjoyed. If I review a book of short stories, you might well be doomed to suffer through a few variations I've written on the stories contained within. If I review a site of philosophical essays, you'll see critiques of specific arguments raised, and perhaps new arguments suggested by those critiques. In each case, I try to do more than just rattle off a few opinions, and hope that I'm giving you a reason to stay.
This blog, and the pages associated with it, will be no exception. Movies being what they are, you'll end up with an almost random grab bag of topics, some serious, others less so, some a lot less so, that I stumble across in the course of writing the movie.I hope you'll have as much fun reading them as I'll have writing them. Maybe a little more fun, on some days.
Now that you're read the introduction, a few choices follow. Please take the suggestions as to which pages are to be read before you see the movie and which are to be read after seriously, because the latter carry a lot of plot spoilers - hence the name of this site. I would very much hate to see your experience accidentally ruined, so I built a needed warning right into the title. If you'd like to be told when new posts are available for viewing on one of my blogs, the Feedburner (a Google service) links will allow you to subscribe, these links opening in new windows.