Monday, December 01, 2008

Why must I care so much?

   Episode #22 in the Bond franchise. Arguably the worst film I've seen in some time, and that's saying something. It was hardly even a James Bond movie, more like some 'The Bourne Identity" crap that's shot too tight by someone in the midst of an epileptic fit. I don't think I've seen a worse edited film - totally unwatchable. Don't get me started on the story... Frankly I'd be hard pressed to tell you what it was about it was so well defined.

   Why do I care so much about film and cartoons these days? They only get me angry and make me bitter. This world makes no sense to me -  How can QoS be so bad and make 20.1 million in 5 weeks? Why do people like Shrek? Then I spin off into: Why did "The Force Unleashed" have to cheap out on the PS2 version in such a big way? Why does the Christmas shopping season kick into high gear the day after Halloween? What lame excuse did you use to not vote in the last Federal Election? Who is the jackass that came up with reality TV and why has no one killed him yet?

   Then I start to think: WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE??? Have you no integrity? No sense of personal accountability? No concept of potential? Why do we take the notion that 99% of everything is crap as acceptable? 

   And then finally I wonder - why the fuck should I care about any of this? Why do I let these things ruin my day and make me a rotten, surly, sarcastic bastard? I'm being played like a sucker no matter how hard I try it would seem. I'm sure there's a lesson I'm hard pressed to learn in all of this but I have difficulty with the idea that I should stop caring.


Eric Dyck said...

Ha ha ha...settle down Grampa!

Funny, I didn't see this review on rottentomatoes...but I do look forward to the action sequences in Angora on the telly!

Anonymous said...

Quantum of Solace was a lot of fun. Not as good as Casino Royale, but a worthwhile follow-up. And what's wrong with being similar to a Bourne Flick? The Bourne movies are awesome! You need to be not so judgemental. Just cause something doesn't match up to your incredibly high standards doesn't mean there is anything wrong with 'us people'. That's more condescending than the 'art' that you're calling condescending actually is!

Anonymous said...

PS - Apparently it doesn't matter who you vote for in the federal election anymore these days.

Troy Little said...

Ultimately, to each their own of course. It's all a matter of opinion and taste and I tend to be critical to the point of enjoying very little (as you know) - which kind of sucks honestly.

So it's only QUALITY films for me. Like ALIEN3.

Touche on the election comment.

Blair Kitchen said...

I haven't seen Quantum of Solace, but I hear where you are coming from. What's even worse is that I have such incredibly high standards with everything, and when I do my own work, I can't even live up to them, then I start thinking my work is crap and I feel guilty for calling everything else crap. But I can't stop it, because something in my brain wants everything to be great. I've given up on hollywood films because there's too much NWO propaganda stuffed into them by government agencies that the stories suffer way too much. That, and producers that should not be able to make artistic decisions, doing so.

How has Angora Napkin been with creative freedom? (you don't have to answer it here, but I'd love to hear from you with a personal email:)

I feel your pain.

Doc Savageland said...

Like you, when I left the theatre after having seen Quantum of Solace, I was greatly disappointed. I just couldn't get past the horrid camerawork. On this issue, I find I must take a stand. There are people out there who like that kind of filmmaking, and that's fine, but I challenge anyone to come up with a valid argument that this form of shaky-cam actually works, because it doesn't. Anyone who knows anything about filmmaking will eventually admit that it is style over substance. For short moments where the story demands that some disorientation is necessary, that is good, and the right thing to do, but sustained across an entire action sequence!? No educated person can come up with a valid argument in favour of this style for the simple matter that once the camera shakes that much, the audience cannot 'take in' what they are seeing. Regardless of what style of filmmaking you believe in, or like, it's all about telling a story in visual terms, and when you decide to obscure the image over an extended period of time, you've given up telling the story. The only thing that gets conveyed is that something intense is going on, but what? Who knows, because we only see a blur. Where are the details, the actors reactions to the situations they are in, the amazing stunts and fight choreography, all this is lost when the camera shakes. If you think of all the great classic films that you can watch over and over, no matter how old they get, they have this impact because the filmmakers "show" you the story, and don't hide behind artificial camera techniques. It's a stupid film trend and I can't wait for it to die.

Now having said that, I went home and when I started to complain to my brother about how much I hated the film, a lot of good points came up, and I discovered over the course of the conversation, that I actually liked the movie. I just hated the way it was filmed. First off, one thing that's been bugging me for ten years of Bond films is that in the climax of 1997's Tomorrow Never Dies they decided to 'modernize' Bond by giving him the new but stupid Walther P99 pistol, and he's been using it ever since. The P99 is a big, 9mm, 16 round combat gun. Totally the wrong thing for a spy. You can't carry around something like that and pretend you're not 'armed.' Besides, when Ian Flemming wrote the books he always had him using the Walther PPK, a small easily concealable spy gun. Maybe this is a small point to make, but for Bond enthusiasts, I was pleased to see that he was back to using the right gun. I also really liked the scene at the opera house where Bond gets the best of the baddies in a way I won't ruin for those who haven't seen the film (but I will say this is what's been missing from the recent Bond films, is story, character, and not just one excuse to go from one action sequence to the next). I loved the homage to Goldfinger that Ms. Fields becomes, and I like how they use M, that she's part of the story, and not a vehicle for exposition.

I think ultimately what Casino Royale was about was this: "Okay Bond you've got the job, but can you do it?" So in Casino, Bond was tested, and proved to M that he could do the job.

In Quantum what it was about was this: "Okay we can see you have the skills to do the job Mr. Bond, but can we trust you with the license to kill? We don't just hand that out to anyone!" Bond's predilection towards violence was questioned in Casino, but I think it became the whole point of Quantum, and the business about getting revenge for Vesper (his love from Casino) I think is really secondary.

I think by the end of this duo of films, all the pieces are in place, and we will start to see more of the Bond we are used to, just not written in such a formulaic, cartoonish way. I look forward to what they come up with next! Just as long as they listen to everyone's complaint's about the crappy camerawork.

Troy Little said...

Hey Blair,

I don't mind telling you here that we have by and large had total creative freedom on Angora Napkin. Teletoon and our producers have been giving us lots of space to work in, I think the fact that it's a late night cartoon helps keep their fear of offending to a minimum.

There's the usual Can-Con stuff that must be put in but we tried to use that to our advantage instead of making it obligatory.

My only complaint is I don't have enough time to work on it!

Hey Keith,

Yeah, the camera work was appalling and ruined the movie for me. Echoing the action scenes with the horse race and opera were a bit heavy handed and annoying as well. I did like the Goldfinger homage, but she was such a red-shirt throw away character that it wasn't a big deal.

Lamest villain since "Tomorrow Never Dies".

michael valiquette said...

Go see JCVD and Synecdoche,NY.