LOL, so apparently David Cronenberg hates Superhero movies. I find this semi-hilarious, considering the type of filmmaker that Cronenberg is. I mean, it’s one thing to not particularly care for a certain genre of film. That happens to all of us. I don’t usually care for Westerns. But to make such broad statements as he does in his interview with Next Movie (as blogged here by ComicBookMovie.com) is rather disconcerting.
I’m not the biggest fan of Cronenberg to begin with, and I find his approach to film to be, at times, rather juvenile and purely for shock value. This is also what makes his particular statements to be somewhat laughable. For a man who built his career making reductive horror films that rely on grotesque makeup and fake blood to convey a particular point, he has a problem with “Batman running around in a stupid cape.”? This, and the mere fact that he basically calls out all comic book movies, and he himself adapted one back in 2005 (in the form of the vastly overrated ‘A History of Violence’) and his whole stance seems preposterous. I don’t mind it when artists state their opinions. In fact, I generally encourage it. We need more honesty in the industry. Cronenberg’s statements though seem somewhat misdirected. It makes him sound petty. Why would you attack someone else’s art? To make a statement like “I think people who are saying, you know, ‘Dark Knight Rises’ is, you know, supreme cinema art, I don’t think they know what the fuck they’re talking about” is overly judgmental of a craft that you should wholly appreciate and is demeaning another filmmaker’s work in a way that he personally would hate to be branded. What if someone were to say that horror films, as a general rule, could not be considered high art? That would be stupid, but it would also be the same thing as what Cronenberg is saying, and at the end of the day they are both genre films and Cronenberg has spent the better part of his career dwelling in that particular genre. I mean, these words are coming out of the mouth of the same man who made ‘The Fly’? Sorry, but to call comic book movies “adolescent in its core” makes him sound like a pompous asshole, and the funny part is the irony surrounding his statement, considering that his genre of choice isn’t that far removed from the superhero genre.
What’s so different from a man that turns into a fly and a man that dresses up like a bat?
I think ‘The Fly’ is one of Cronenberg’s finest achievements and one of the greatest horror films around, and I consider it ‘high art’, so I’m not even debating the quality of his work versus that which he brandishes as unworthy, but one can’t help but question his authority on the subject. He just sounds like an idiot.
Oh, and ‘The Dark Knight’ in particular has more depth than nearly any and everything that Cronenberg himself has directed, so there’s that also.
So anyways, this poses the question as to whether or not a form of filmmaking can be ‘written off’ in the exact sense that Cronenberg claims superhero or mere comic book films can be? There was a time when I wrote off animated films as inferior, but I wised up to that stupidity. So, as you can tell, I’m firmly in the ‘no, we shouldn’t write off any form of film’ but what about you?