Monday, February 19, 2007

A Dyson's Fear Repeat: "What if I don't like it?"

I wrote the following on a message board:
...exploration of film is a personality building experience. Regardless of the quality of the film, you'll come out knowing something about yourself that you didn't before you watched the film. Even if it's something as simple as "I didn't like that."

The very worst thing that can happen is that you don't like one or both of them, and the very best thing is that you will really like one or both of them.
Film is something that's important to me, and it's something that's lost to me. Everybody has a medium of expression that works for them, whether it be writing, art, music, whatever. My medium is film, and like all art, I think it's something that everyone should explore.

A common thing I hear is "What if I don't like it?", and it's something I bite my tongue at. To me, "What if I don't like it?" should be countered with "What if you do?" It's an important distinction, and it's an approach that needs to be taken.

As I say above, watching film is a personality building experience, and it's an exercise that's incredibly important to personal growth. It's also a hellish thing to believe in when you're selling movies on a retail level, as you're dealing with people who not only don't want to take chances, but are functionally illiterate when it comes to film. These are people who are cemented in their ignorance, and stubbornly refuse to accept new experiences. I'm talking about the chuckleheads whose only criticism of a film is either it rocks or it sucks, and when asked why, they reply "I dunno, it just does".

This is also a response to the thread where I posted the above comment, which was a poster asking if he should watch either of the movies he got from Netflix. My reflex comment would've been "You rented them, so watch them. You don't need us to hold your hand.", but that would've been a bad idea as we live in a day and age where it really feels like people need handholding to make simple decisions. (Yeah, I know I'm one to talk, which is especially true to those who are aware of my current bout of indecision.)

It gets me that these people who have such passionate gripes about simple things are completely useless to make these simple decisions on their own. It's one thing to ask for info before making a decision, but it's another to ask people to make the decision for them. It's the modern lack of responsibility issue at play, and I grieve for our civilization.

There's my rant. I'm done.

Thank you.

(From April 19th, 2006.)

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