I always find it interesting to analyze critics’ views and reviews on old films from let’s say for example two decades ago. At that time we as movie viewers relied more on what they had to say.
Today we can share our own opinion with fellow fans and share our own judgments. You see the difference almost immediately between someone who knows the genre and someone who is just watching it as an obligation.
Today we expect more from everyone in the film industry including critics and the way they review the film. If they continue the way they used to do it in the past they will become irrelevant because today any random person can perform proper research online to obtain at least the basic information about the film which includes details about the plot and how it was made. When a critic knows about the genre and is able to give an objective review that gives you both the pros and the cons, it is appreciated more than someone who doesn’t like the genre and reviews the movie unfavorably just because he doesn’t like the genre.
Critics have a difficult job because they should have knowledge about the different film genres in order to judge them. Sounds logical right? A podiatrist wouldn’t perform an open heart operation because that’s not his/her specialty. Using this example the critics should have the knowledge of both the podiatrist and the surgeon. As you see there is no categorization for critics. Everyone can review everything. And not everyone knows everything. In some cases, they don’t even make the effort to understand the genre.
Let’s take the science fiction genre, for example, it is a popular and difficult genre to review because there are so many sub-genres and styles of film-making. There are critics that have their Sci-Fi knowledge limited to Star Wars and Star Trek and don’t see anything beyond that. Or you have the group that has absolutely no clue about science fiction or simply doesn’t like the genre. It would be okay if we were talking about regular people who have the right to like whatever they want but we’re not. Watching movies as a critic shouldn’t be a joyful ride. If you happen to enjoy the movie that is a bonus but even if you didn’t you should be able to follow the story and give an objective view of the story.
Critics should be able to give an honest judgment but in reality, many have their own agenda. Therefore it is better to make your own judgment. The movie you watch may have a different impact on you compared to someone else. If it is a genre you are unfamiliar with see it with an open mind and low expectations (regardless of the premise or actors in the film). This approach helped me enjoy movies I didn’t expect to enjoy as much as I did.
One of the benefits we are enjoying today is the benefit of having online access to many films from different countries through streaming platforms. They give you the opportunity to experience a new film on your own at home. Take a few hours from watching reruns and browsing through the new titles. You may discover a gem that was overlooked or underrated. What do you think? Feel free to leave your thoughts and comments in the comment section below.
4 thoughts on “Changing Expectations: A View at Critics”
Hi, great article, I am a person that can’t be a critic of movies 🙂
Sometime I read that certain movie earn a good place from the critics and when I see the movie I don’t like it. And sometimes movies that people says that the movie is not so goo I love it. 🙂
I enjoy a lot Sci-Fi Movies. But as you say to be a critic you need to learn how to judge a movie beyond your likes and dislikes.
By the way are super heroes movies Sci-Fi or adventure?
Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
Regarding your question today superhero movies cannot be put in one box or one genre. They have gone beyond the traditional way of storytelling. In one superhero movie you can find adventure, drama, comedy, thriller, etc. Based on how the superhero obtains its powers can be either science fiction or fantasy. What you see is that they included social issues as well. They have evolved into something more.
You know it’s funny you mention movie critics. I can’t remember the last time I paid attention to a critic especially a movie critic. I remember that duo, Siskel and Ebert. In the 80’s and a good chunk of the 90’s, everyone paid attention to them. I know my parents did. Those two guys had a lot of clout. I’m sure box office sales were heavily influenced by them.
I agree with you. Most critics have an agenda. It’s one of the reasons I really like that anyone’s opinions and reviews can be easily seen. As you said, honest opinions are going to come from the fans of that specific genre and the love for it shows through in the reviews.
This was a fun read! Thanks for sharing.
That;’s exactly right. And you are not the only one. Most of the people I know think the same but that is only possible because of social media. You could say that it is one of the positives that came from the rise of social media.
I’m glad you liked it and hope to see you around 🙂