When it comes to film, I don’t suppose you can really help what you enjoy and what you don’t. Are we preordained, in that sense?
Not completely, but the reason I bring this up is because I saw Snowpiercer earlier today, and I’m ambivalent about it. The pacing felt slow and the allegory of the whole class system felt overdone and the characters seemed too brooding and contrived; but it picked up nearly an hour later and most of those flaws receded and interesting revelations that were built up came to light. So how does one judge the experience in its entirety? More specifically, where does our opinion fall between the fine line of the cinema as it undergoes analysis, and the cinema as we watch it? I can appreciate the imbued symbolism lying beneath the surface of Snowpiercer’s visual palette (made apparent to me through this video), but it doesn’t change the way I felt while I watched it. How much value should we place on the film’s storytelling vis a vis our visceral reaction, and how much on the realized artistic ingenuity and detail that underlies that story after analysis?
Of course, it’s up to you.
Kenneth Turan wrote an interesting op-ed on his own rumination about criticism after he felt underwhelmed by the universally acclaimed Boyhood. I think it’s a misunderstanding to say this is his criticism of the film at all; the film is simply a placeholder for any film that all critics inevitably face—the one that makes them reevaluate why it is we are compelled to share our opinions and critique at all, let alone pursue a profession in it.