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Cronenberg on TDKR: Batman running around in a stupid cape, for kids


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Count out one fan of "The Dark Knight Rises." The indie filmmaker David Cronenberg slammed supporters of the movie who call the blockbuster art, saying," I don't think they know what the f--k they're talking about."

 

The director was speaking to MTV to promote his new film, "Cosmopolis," starring "Twilight" heartthrob Robert Pattinson as a young billionaire whose rarefied world unravels in just one day.

 

Cronenberg's scathing words were picked up by the Hollywood Reporter and have been catching buzz.

 

In the interview, the filmmaker, who did direct a movie based on a graphic novel, "A History of Violence," elaborated on his opinion of the caped crusader.

 

"I don't think they are making them an elevated art form. I think it's still Batman running around in a stupid cape. I just don't think it's elevated. (Director) Christopher Nolan's best movie is 'Memento,' and that is an interesting movie. I don't think his Batman movies are half as interesting though they're 20 million times the expense."

 

For his part, Cronenberg did acknowledge that he respected Nolan's mastery of IMAX technology, calling it "really tricky and difficult to do." But he added that the movie was "boring." "A superhero movie, by definition, you know, it's comic book. It's for kids. It's adolescent in its core."

 

But perhaps the director would be fine channeling his inner adolescent. He admitted, "As an actor, I would play Batman."

 

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i haven't seen ExistenZ (Naked Lunch was something) but i kinda feel dumb whenever people engage the "what is art" debate, personally.

also: people seem to be taking this as a shot on superhero comics (i dont see how) instead of the entire medium, likely because one of his more famous flicks comes from a graphic novel.

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If he's talking about superheroes...well,yeah. We're lucky that we have some that are good now, and they're good because they elevated the subject matter. We take for granted that we had to dig for thay shit most of the time. We had to circulate in communities that talked about comics or read about them in our spare time.

If it's about superheroes, he's not really wrong. They're really silly, and we should realize that. Doesn't mean we can't like them anyway.

 

If it's about the medium, that's absurd and he's an ignorant fuck. I'm not going to boycott him, because I really enjoy many of his films.

I'll change my stance if he gives money to an organization that doesn't believe comics should have legal marriage.

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Superheroes are just modern mythology. Ancient people worshiped them AS GODS back in the day. I know its his right to say and believe what he wants, but I talk about someone's God or religion? It's blasphemy. To me... his words are no different.

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If it's about superheroes, he's not really wrong. They're really silly, and we should realize that.

 

The majority of superhero stories are silly? Yes, I'd agree. All? Hell no.

Anybody that reads Batman Year One, Arkham Asylum: A Serious House On Serious Earth, Watchmen and Bendis' run on Daredevil and calls those stories silly, is an idiot.

Edited by alive she cried
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The majority of superhero stories are silly? Yes, I'd agree. All? Hell no.

Anybody that reads Batman Year One, Arkham Asylum: A Serious House On Serious Earth, Watchmen and Bendis' run on Daredevil and calls those stories silly, is an idiot.

 

We're lucky that we have some that are good now, and they're good because they elevated the subject matter.

 

Not the stories, the genre. Yeah, there's some really good superhero stuff that's been done. There are some talented people that realized that the really stupid books heavily marketed to children could be something more.

 

Let's say you love the medium of frosting sculpting. Cake frosting sculpting, specifically. You want to devote your life to it, it is your calling. Now let's say that 90% of the cake frosting sculpting industry is devoted to sculpting the likenesses of MC Hammer in his cartoon alter ego of Hammerman.

DFzni.jpg

 

Hammerman frosting cakes are all anyone wants to buy, so it's all the major frosting sculpting companies want to pay people to do.

If you want to do something good, you better learn to do something new with Stanley.

And maybe you do. You do a stunning characterization that moves the very soul. People take photographs and weep at it's glory.

That doesn't make Hammerman any less retarded. If just means you did something worthwhile out of what you were given.

 

Superhero comics were, almost without exception, absolutely retarded for half of their existence (which also happens to be the half when Cronenberg would have been a kid). And they still are. You break down a nice percentage of what books released each month are readable. It took a few people to show that they had potential, and a generation that grew up finding those guys and seeing even more.

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mind you, i borrowed that from another thread, and it's summarizing. the full interview makes it sound like he's on about heavy studio presense pushing family-friendly/universal appeal, which i thnk we'd all agree has ruined more than a few flicks, but it's weird to use Nolan's dark bat-flicks as an example.

 

the other issue is that he (presumably) has a tier for graphic novel vs superhero book, which i once did too but its a pretty thin. honestly, im 100% okay with Warren Ellis saying like 90% of superhero books still operate entirely on adolescent power fantasies + daytime soap opera shit, it's just the broad brush of saying there can't be higher concepts/art in a story with tights that strikes me as a poor call.

 

again though, he directed A History of Violence, so i think he's mostly commenting on hollywood & huge budget superhero flicks. i still don't agree but in that light i think it's an easier pill to swallow.

 

*edit logans made a good post back there

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re: Existenz- It's actually a pretty cool movie. It's been awhile since I watched it, but I remember enjoying it.

 

re: Cronenberg- I'm sure there's a lot of other good movie makers that think the same. It's annoying that's how he thinks, but he makes completely different movies and probably has a different mindset. Though, I think I remember Shumacher saying something similar about his own Batman movies in a weird attempt to defend them. Like he didn't understand why people were shitting all over them and was all like "what's the big deal? It's just silly ol' Batman!" I think that's not too relevant here though and was in a different context...

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BUT, in the meantime. What a dick. Sure it's not amazeballs art but it's still a form of art and you need to come off your high horse.

This.

 

Sounds like Cronenberg's got a case of the "envies" more than anything. "Whaa. My films are truly ART!!! Yet society is too dumb to appreciate it. Whaa." Also, he needs to check his dictionary b/c he doesn't seem to really know what the definition of "superhero" is either.

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Eh, fair fucks to the man for airing out his opinion of what is a much loved film and not giving much of a shit about drawing the ire from people. While it does smack of being a bit contrary for the sake of being contrary and using his position as someone who can have their soap box rants or thoughts easily shared, it is nice to see not everyone truly and madly in love with the film or series as a whole.

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