Oh, you guys… I don't even know where to begin today. I woke up really early from an anxiety dream, prompted in part from all the bickering over Jonathan Chait's whiny piece about how people are mean… to white guys on the INTERNET! Boo-fucking-hoo, bro. I enjoyed Glenn Greenwald's response quite a bit. And this part stuck with me:
Prior to the advent of blogs, establishment journalists were largely immunized even from hearing criticisms. If a life-tenured New York Times columnist wrote something stupid or vapid, or a Sunday TV news host conducted a sycophantic interview with a government official, there was no real mechanism for the average non-journalist citizen to voice critiques. At best, aggrieved readers could write a Letter to the Editor, which few journalists cared about. Establishment journalists spoke only to one another, and careerist concerns combined with an incestuous chumminess ensured that the most influential among them heard little beyond flowery praise.
Unfortunately it stuck enough with me that I left a pointed comment on a "review" by one of my nemesises, essentially calling him out for being a lazy-minded asshat who conflates his own personal tastes for objective markers of quality and who thinks gossip about an artist's personal life constitutes professional criticism. Yeah. Oops. I'd sworn off leaving comments because there are too many of Those Guys and only one of me and life is too short but… it was really irritating me that NOBODY ever called this guy on his bullshit. And Glenn Greenwald inspired me to do so.
I don't know, guys. I just feel like the things I appreciate in art and culture are just laughed and dismissed by the critical class as a whole… And I've come to think that's why my more serious reviews of films like VIP and I are appreciated. Maybe I'm wrong. I don't know. But I'll just keep doing what I'm doing. The nice thing about blogging is I can say whatever I want! And I do listen to differing opinions and at least try to understand where people are coming from. That's how you learn!! And grow wise!!
Along with Jon Chait's whining, the other thing I'm irritated with in the American film ethos at the moment is the talk around Selma and how it doesn't matter that LBJ--President Johnson--was turned into the villain of the piece, distorting the actual historic record of how Johnson really HELPED pushed civil rights legislation through. The great Elizabeth Drew has a piece on it that speaks exactly to my opinion on the matter. There's also another good piece on that bullshit Alan Turing movie. Taken together, they speak to everything I hate about "biopics." In the case of Selma, particularly, we see actual historical record warped to fit the current Government-is-the-enemy sentiment in the United States. We don't trust Congress or the president anymore, so our historical movies must show them as the enemy, even though at the time that's not exactly how it was. Or maybe nobody cares about the old, wise, get-things-done kind of men like Eisenhower and LBJ anymore. We're all too dazzled by Kennedy and his flashy talk and pretty wife.
ANYWAYS, I know. Come on, Filmi Girl, give me something I care about! Okay!
That promo image of Ranbir for Bombay Velvet?!!!!!
It really just looks like he's about to get… um… how to put this delicately… be the bottom in a certain sexual act enjoyed by many adult men of all sorts of sexual orientations but that (I believe) is currently illegal in India.
If that's part of the plot of Bombay Velvet, then big up to Kashyap and Kapoor for engaging in some REAL taboo breaking. Although somehow, I suspect it'll have to be in our imaginations. But you can't tell me it isn't what the image was aiming at.
I feel better now getting it all out and have renewed my resolution to stay away from comments sections and people who irritate me with their entitled pronouncements on what "quality" is. Now to cleanse my mental palate with something I consider high quality… NTR JR DANCING.
Note from Filmi Girl:
I love Bollywood - and all the ridiculous things that happen in Bollywood - but it doesn't mean that I can't occasionally make fun of various celebrities and films.
If you don't like my sense of humor, please just move on by - Trolls are not appreciated and nasty comments will be deleted.
xoxo Filmi Girl