Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Cult Classics That Never Were: "Titan A.E."

The following article was written in 2008, one of several reflection pieces meant to be published in a book that was being shopped around to publishers for the Online Film Critics Society. The book never materialized, but some of the submissions that various critics made were no doubt well-written essays that were also impeccable in the aesthetic known only to the most talented of online writers. I’m sure that some of the work of my colleagues from the project has since made it online, and because I’m never one to advise wasting a written word, the time has come to publish my own.

Despite the fact that I wrote a review for “Titan A.E.” during it’s original theatrical run, I felt it was appropriate to revisit the movie and it’s ongoing reputation as an underrated gem. (Not so ironically, this piece was written for a chapter called “Cult Classics That Never Were,” which I now use as the header here to create the distinction of it not being a typical film review).

Friday, April 15, 2011

Scream 4 - ***1/2 (2011)

“One generation’s tragedy is another’s joke,” observes Deputy Dewey Riley (David Arquette) during an early moment in “Scream 4,” on a day in which ghost-faced costumes are lined on lampposts throughout town to acknowledge the anniversary of a deadly teenage massacre from so many years prior. Those old enough to remember the experience find it no laughing matter, but as is the curse of time in history and society, our culture is desensitized to the past because mankind exists in a perpetual state of testing its boundaries.

The kids in the original “Scream” watched scary movies, recognized the formulas and walked around with a certain self-awareness of their bleak situations; here, over a decade later, horror films are not about patterns as much as they are about the gratuity, and Hollywood has lost all inspiration to green-light anything other than remakes. Therefore, the only movie rule that applies to the teenagers of Woodsboro circa 2011: all other rules are undergoing a revamp.