Sunday, January 16, 2011

The Future of Cinemachine

Hello readers,

In the early days of this blog I wrote about whatever I felt like, categorically and by topic. These topics were to my recollection mostly odd subgenres, compelling figures in film and the occasional news item.

I switched to reviews of each film I saw. This has been fun and challenging and has changed the way I watch movies. The posts have gotten longer even on films which I had less to say. My last two reviews, Black Swan and Expendables, have really been the only off-the-cuff undrafted reviews in a long time and got me to thinking.

I would like to announce that this blog will be returning to articles rather than reviews, and in longer essay form. These essays are tentatively about trash movies and will feature a lot more photo-analysis of scenes and images in addition to lengthy text. This will give the blog a bit more of a thematic focus as my interests are centered around the low arts of exploitation.

I know, who doesn't devote their movie blog to sex and horror already? Armond White is entirely accurate in his damnation of the Internet's influence on thoughtful film criticism, and Ivan Brunetti predicted in a cartoon that popular culture will devolve our intelligentsia into an atrophied, degenerate circle teaches courses on "TV's wacky neighbors as reflections on mores of a shifting zeitgest." Patton Oswalt recently wrote an important article for Wired lamenting among things the current crop of nerds weakened by easy access to their obscure tastes.

Trash movie criticism has come a long way since Joe Bob Briggs, Carol J. Clover and The Psychotronic Guide. On some level it's not as vital to devote serious thought to the sci-fi/horror/fantasy genres, especially when they've seeped into the mainstream. However, the mainstream does not know what to do with them. The exploitation era of movies which ended in my estimation around the mid 1990s was one of purer entertainment - raw, visceral, independent - and still has the most to offer movie lovers. The continuing discovery of forgotten cult treasures like Hausu and Joysticks are as valuable to us as Greek antiquity was to the Romans.

There are two kinds of online writing about movies. Pea-brained fan gibberish, as Armond White put it - or earnest, informed criticism and appraisal from a precious few websites like Slant Magazine and bloggers like my colleagues Andrew and JR with whom I am very proud to associate in film appreciation. I'll veer to the latter company and at least keep my own myopic fascination with fun junk literately articulated.

Thanks to subscribers and regulars for tuning in.

- Chip Butty

1 comment:

JR said...

Cheers, Chip! Glowing at your vote of confidence and hold a similar regard for your work here.

Singular (and quality, and irony-free) critique is a difficult thing. Hopefully we are off in the right direction... although maybe aligning with Armond White isn't the wisest decision. (Teasing, although for the record, I'm ambivalent - he's got some principles on the right track, but man's got no self-control!)

Anyway, keep it up, however that turns out. Off-the-cuff maybe so, but Black Swan and The Expendables deserved some scathe.