Ignoring the Pope
So we've got plans to see Dogma tonight.
I've been looking forward to this for a long time.
I love Kevin Smith.
And I like a lot of independent films.
You’re probably wondering why I qualified my statement like that.
I'll explain. Spike Lee made one true independent film, She's Gotta Have It,
for next to nothing. As soon as that movie got good reviews, he got enough
money to make bigger movies. That's great. He has made some really good ones.
I still place School Daze on my list of the 20 best films of all time.
But he also made a decision. He became a genre film maker.
Not that there is anything wrong with that . . .
Some of my favorite films are pigeonholed by genre (how else could I
adore the whole "women in prison" exploitation craze?). But, in Spike's case,
I think that hurt him. When you limit yourself to doing only one thing,
your art suffers on the 13th attempt - - kind of like the clones in Multiplicity . . . "she touched
my peppie Steve" . . .
Roger Corman is the one obvious exception to this rule.
But back to my original point, Spike suffered. There are two Indies
that didn't though, and I love what they do. Robert Rodriguez and Kevin Smith.
I can hear you saying, "But they always do the same thing too." You're wrong.
Shut your blowhole and I'll tell you why.
First of all, Rodriguez is all about the editing. Sure, he did a remake of his
first film (so that doesn't count) and his other films have had a lot of guns in them.
He uses the same actors too (I'll address this when I get to Silent Bob's work).
All of this is immaterial because it is the editing style that sets his films apart
and gives them their style.
I once got into an argument about his work with an ex-boyfriend. He said that
Desperado was better than El Mariachi. I disagreed. I said that El Mariachi was a better
film because he had to work for it. Even though the stories were essentially the same,
El Mariachi was much more creative and better crafted. Sure the effects
weren't all that, but it had soul.
He said I was blowing smoke out my ass.
it's easy to see why I married James.
Clerks, Mallrats, Chasing Amy, and now Dogma all have:
Jay and Silent Bob.
Witty, well-written dialogue
Maybe I fell asleep in film class that day, but I don't think that qualifies a genre series.
I'm getting off on a rant here, and I didn't really mean to. It's just that I'm sick of hearing
people say that these guys do the same thing over and over again.
They don't. At least my opinion as a
somewhat qualified individual is that they don't.
I just hope that I like Dogma and I don't have to put my foot in my mouth.
I have a lot of movies that I want to see right now. That hasn't happened in a while. I'll try not to, but I'll probably rant and rave about them a lot. Somebody has to do it! Life just isn't the same with out Gene.
If you didn't get that, you're a moron. I was talking about Gene Siskel - the "other guy" to the "fat one". Oy.
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