Since the Oscar nominees were announced and there is always a lot of disagreement on who deserved what, let’s talk about movies we don’t like.
I just saw a critically acclaimed movie and was seriously disappointed. It has so many nominations, and no doubt, will win a bunch. (Some of the nominations, I believe it deserves, though.)
The trailer promised a magical time, but I was left bored and unfulfilled. And this is good news.
No, I don’t like torturing myself. And I do naturally prefer movies that show me a good time. But there are benefits to watching stuff that you don’t enjoy.
1) You get to practice editing in your mind. I’ve got nothing against the movie’s plot or the genre. My biggest issue with the film was its runtime. A little over two hours, the movie got too relaxed at getting its point across. Had this film been about 90 minutes, I’d have probably enjoyed it as much as its trailer. While you think about what scenes that could have been left out, this is a visual addition to your editing instincts. A scene might make sense, look great or make you feel. But does it really push the story forward?
2) Critical sweethearts tend to have solid points going for them. In addition to a stellar cast, this movie boasts of gorgeous cinematography and set pieces. The movie can teach a thing or two about delivering on a limited budget.
3) You learn a thing or two about how you love your antagonists. Watching this movie made me realize I tend to like grey antagonists more. They don’t necessarily have to be relatable or misunderstood. They don’t have to be brilliant or have a wicked sense of humor. But a full-on psychopath with no admirable qualities? That is boring. And annoying. Picture this guy: He is a psychopath. He is a pervert. He is racist. He is not particularly eloquent. He is narcissistic. I didn’t have the best time with this villain even though he is portrayed by an actor I love.
4) We all have different tastes. A lot of people loved this movie. But a lot of people also didn’t. So it is likely that there is a market for your well-written story.
Even the movies or books you don’t like teach you things. Watching a movie is hardly ever an empty experience for a fiction writer.
What do you think? Have you seen or read something lately that let you down a bit? What did you take from it?