When Hollywood Gets It Wrong

I recently read this post by Eric Goebelbecker, and he links to an article where Hollywood attacks the movie rating site Rotten Tomatoes.

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Too much truth here.

If you aren’t familiar with it, Rotten Tomatoes is an online site where they aggregate critic reviews and give a total rank. The NY Times article above goes into more detail as to how they choose who is and isn’t included in the reviews they aggregate, but it sounds to me like Rotten Tomatoes does a pretty good job. Especially as they try to include a more diverse group of reviews that the traditional middle-aged white male perspective.

Still, the whole things does reinforces the term “la la land” for Hollywood.

Because, rather than them taking a hard look at the movies they’re making and asking themselves why they’re flops, they’re blaming a rating agency for giving those who go to their site the truth as a wider array of critics, and eventually viewers themselves, sees it.

And this is what people want.

Rotten Tomatoes gets more than 13 million unique visitors every day.

If Hollywood were honest with themselves, they’d take a hard look at the competition. And I don’t mean just other movies.

They are competing with so many other forms of entertainment that they really have to bring their top game.

 

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Too much truth here, too.

Let’s face it, our choices are more expansive that ever:

  • Reading books
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Snapchat
  • Instagram
  • Video Games – whether phone, console or PC
  • On Demand TV – Netflix, Amazon, Hulu etc.
  • Whatever the heck it is millennials do on their phones

Many of these forms of entertainment are “free”. Once I pay for my Netflix subscription, I can watch what I want when I wish.

For my husband and I to go to the movies to see a single movie costs more than my monthly Netflix subscription. Add to that the cost of a babysitter, and the fact if I wait a few months, I can rent it or buy it for less than the cost of going to the theater, and we just don’t go. Especially as home theater systems and big screen TVs have become a whole lot more affordable.

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Way too much truth.

And while Hollywood is bemoaning their “plight” with Rotten Tomatoes, HBO was laughing all the way to the bank as they cashed in on Game of Thrones.

So yes, people are watching “TV”, although the seventy-plus minute final episode of season 7 bordered on movie-length.

Yet, people were lining up to watch it. Waiting in eager anticipation. Talking about it all week before and after the episode. Building enough anticipation that the show has only gotten more popular, despite the gap of a year or more between seasons.

Yes, Game of Thrones has Drogon, and that’s hard to beat.

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But there’s a lot more to the show than Drogon. There’s a list of characters pages long that viewers have come to care about. Come to love. That we tune in to see what happens to them even they aren’t fire-breathing reptiles.

And yes, HBO spent a lot of money of those special effects. But it wasn’t all about special effects. How many of us were right there with Tyrion as he cursed Jamie for being an idiot as he charges Dany?

Perhaps if Hollywood could distill that and give it to us, they could make movies we want to see.

All in, I hope places like Rotten Tomatoes stick around. They give us what we want. If Hollywood would do the same, they wouldn’t have such an issue.

 

How about you? Do you go to movies? Ever used Rotten Tomatoes guides?

 

 

Game of Thrones Coward

There. I admitted it.

While I follow Game of Thrones, I’ve never actually seen an episode.

I know, I know, but here’s the deal. I’m a coward.

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When GoT first came out, I was super excited. I was trying to figure out how to get to see it even though we don’t have cable when a couple of close friends took me aside. See, they know me pretty well, and they’d read the books.

They proceeded to tell me some of the plot, the horrible things that happen to some of the characters, and to bring it all home, they told me about the Red Wedding. At the time, they didn’t think HBO would actually show a lot of what was in the books (boy were they wrong!), but they wanted to warn me about what was in it.

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Just that conversation gave me nightmares.

I don’t wish to see graphic violence, murder, death, rape, incest or gore. Among other things. I’m even less interested in the weeks of nightmares I have after seeing them.

I get that some people like to be afraid, but I can’t even sit through cheesy horror flicks from the 80s. Sure, everyone in it is too stupid to live and Darwin demands his due, but I just can’t handle it. I’ve never seen Silence of the Lambs. I made myself sit through Aliens in the theater to impress my boyfriend. I paid for it with weeks of nightmares.

I can’t even read scary stuff. I know Stephen King is an amazing author, but after reading Salem’s Lot, I kept peaking at my curtains for far too many weeks to make sure nothing was looking back at me. (No idea what I’d have done if a neighborhood cat would’ve looked in my window at the wrong time.)

And yet, I’m drawn to Game of Thrones. I eagerly await the day after the airing of a new episode to find out what happened.

I’ve learned to be careful. Sometimes just hearing about what happened from a gifted storyteller can trigger my over-active imagination.

So I “watch” from the sidelines. Enjoy the sumptuous costumes, the incredible story line, and the amazing characters at a distance.

And yes, I was very happy when Ramsey Bolton got what was coming to him. Karma also demands its due. I’m interested to see what Sansa does now, and I don’t want to love Lyanna because I don’t want her to die…

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How about you? Anything you’ve ever been interested in but too afraid to watch? Maybe too embarrassed? Did you watch anyway? Hang out on the sidelines? Or just move on?