U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Celebrating Memorial Day!
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Entertainment and Arts > Movies
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
Old 02-18-2008, 12:56 PM
 
Location: on an island
13,374 posts, read 40,148,217 times
Reputation: 13176

Advertisements

Quote:
If you look closely, you'll see that the formula does not change - just the details. Now, those details do make the films stand apart from the hordes of garbage that Hollywoood releases. But, the truth is that "indie-comedy" is just a new, increasingly popular twist on the old standard fare.
These films make me happy, but they are no less exploitive than anything else Hollywood puts out. They just exploit the better sensibilities in us.
Okay, I thought B.Frank's reply to Mooseketeer was worth its own thread.
Moose had mentioned how much she enjoyed Juno and such movies as Napoleon Dynamite, Little Miss Sunshine.
I wasn't crazy about ND, it did just feel like a series of goofy oneliners, though I will always have affection for the time machine segment.
LMS felt more like it was really trying to *say* something.
With indie-non-Hollywood movies, there are genres within genres.
There are the self-absorbed minutiae of post-collegiate existence films like Kicking and Screaming, Before Sunrise, Garden State--this subgenre even achieved a name--"mumblecore."
There are the dysfunctional family dramedy series. You could stick Little Miss Sunshine in here, of course. there is The Squid and the Whale (good) Royal Tennenbaums (not so good, IMHO it tried way too hard for that wacky, otherworldly tone.) .
There are the granddaddies such as Local Hero (excellent).
City of God is another excellent film that wanted nothing more than to unapologetically tell an important story, and it did the job beautifully.
I think some movie viewers are unwilling to feel manipulated, especially if the film is a drama.
I also think comedies are more difficult that dramas.
I suppose I don't really mind my sensibilities being exploited, if it's something haven't seen a million times.
I don't even expect an intricate plot, though I enjoy that. I do enjoy snappy dialogue, a good soundtrack, and something good to look at, be it natural beauty, production values, camera angles.
I dunno, I'll take Donnie Darko or Memento over Hollywood dreck any day of the week--and twice on Sunday.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 02-18-2008, 09:36 PM
 
Location: Missouri
6,044 posts, read 21,125,101 times
Reputation: 5033
Good topic; I just replied to this in the other thread but I will repost here.

I think what made ND, Juno, Little Miss Sunshine special is that they did not rely on big budget actors, special effects, or scenery to tell their stories. I like the fact that a good movie can be made without a kajillion dollars being spent. Also, another common factor was that there is no gratuitous violence, sex, or nudity. What is shown, seems real, normal, and keeps with the story; there's none of that stuff put in just for the sake of putting it in.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-19-2008, 04:03 AM
 
Location: Oxford, England
13,036 posts, read 21,513,339 times
Reputation: 19858
Excellent thread BlueWillowPlate . Here is a copy of my response to Frank:



I think to a certain extent all films, books etc... will be formulaic as all art is to a degree created by human beings who expose the human condition in all its variety. That variety in a way though will always be limited and hence the formulaic bit . We are all heavily influenced and shaped by our life experiences but at the end of the day most of us still experience the same, albeit in different shades.

I guess what I love about those movies is the freshness and quirkiness and the finely crafted dialogues, script and an assembling of actors who truly give depth to their roles.

Juno for example to me was original not in its topic but in its handling. I found its bitter-sweetness thoroughly refreshing. It had a subtlety of touch and a deftness I can't really put into words. I guess it really touched something deep inside and it makes it a rare flower whose fragrance will linger long after I left the cinema.


Most movies in the end are about human beings and how we address our human condition and that topic as varied as it may be still has limits. We are born, we live, we love, we hate , we die.

I love movies which I connect with on a deeper level than just pure entertainment. I can quite enjoy a normal Hollywood blockbuster but rarely does it leave me feeling satisfied.
I hate movies which rely on special effects, exploitative sex and violent scenes. A movie should be good enough to stand on its own two feet with precious little adornment. These things are just fripperies.

I go to the theatre a lot and it always astonishes me how much a good play can convey with virtually no sets and no costumes.

A good play engages you at a much more fundamental level, and envelops you in its world, bridging the gap between reality and illusion. I feel a good film should almost be able to do that too.
A good script, good actors are pretty much all that is needed and i always feel Hollywood has a Byzantine craving for conspicuous consumption. Hollywood believes bigger is better. Louder is better. Shinier is better. More expensive is better.

I think as with Jewellery and taste in general less is more , good indie movies understand that and strip the carcass bare and what they bring to the table to me is so much more satisfying.

I loved Napoleon Dynamite but I don't think it was a "great" movie.

I think Juno on reflection is a great one. To me anyway.

All art should do is touch and move us , making us think and it does fulfil that criteria for me anyway. It has reached a little part of my soul and that is so rare nowadays that I feel almost shocked.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-19-2008, 04:34 AM
 
Location: on an island
13,374 posts, read 40,148,217 times
Reputation: 13176
Aw thanks ladies for replying here.
You both have touched on some very important reasons for indies to exist:

I like the fact that a good movie can be made without a kajillion dollars being spent. Also, another common factor was that there is no gratuitous violence, sex, or nudity.

I go to the theatre a lot and it always astonishes me how much a good play can convey with virtually no sets and no costumes.

Hollywood believes bigger is better. Louder is better. Shinier is better. More expensive is better.

I think as with Jewellery and taste in general less is more , good indie movies understand that and strip the carcass bare and what they bring to the table to me is so much more satisfying.


What I understand, correct me if I am wrong, B Frank to be saying is that indie movies still pander. It's just that they pander to our better sensibilities.

Probably B Frank is only talking about that certain type of feelbadthenfeelgood indie-comedy, and he might be right about this trend, and that some film producers might perhaps be trying to exploit it. However, when it comes to that subgenre, I still say bring it on.
These folks still have to struggle for financing, and I think they try harder than the average bear to produce a good film.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-19-2008, 05:17 AM
 
Location: Oxford, England
13,036 posts, read 21,513,339 times
Reputation: 19858
I agree with you BlueWillowPlate.

I guess we all want to be pandered to in some ways and at the end of the day even Indie film makes have to target an audience. I am just glad to be pandered to in such a way ! Maybe I am kidding myself but I don't find it so exploitative.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-20-2008, 06:57 AM
 
Location: The Netherlands
8,567 posts, read 14,514,836 times
Reputation: 1573
I don't mind movies being formulaic, but once they make (indie) movies just to become the next blockbuster I feel it will ruin art ( as it has ruined the fun of doing a sport).
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-20-2008, 07:40 AM
 
Location: on an island
13,374 posts, read 40,148,217 times
Reputation: 13176
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tricky D View Post
I don't mind movies being formulaic, but once they make (indie) movies just to become the next blockbuster I feel it will ruin art ( as it has ruined the fun of doing a sport).
Well, I can't think of any indie movie which seemed to be a calculated reach for blockbuster status, but sometimes I sense less improvisation and originality in some of these films the hipster tastemakers tout.
"The Gods Must Be Crazy" became a cult movie for good reason.
Napoleon Dynamite--meh.
To me, the most creative part of that particular movie was the opening credits.
Same thing with Eagle vs Shark. It began amusingly enough, but after awhile I got this feeling like they were *trying* to be quirky and zany and while I did not dislike the movie, I just didn't warm to it all that much.
I don't think either of those movies were trying to actively capitalize on anything.
But they both did feel lazy rather than original.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-20-2008, 09:11 AM
 
Location: Oxford, England
13,036 posts, read 21,513,339 times
Reputation: 19858
I agree with you BlueWillowPlate, some Indie movies do have a more "enforced" quirkiness about it, one which flows with less ease.

I think movies can still be very enjoyable but not touch you that much ( to me that would be Napoleon Dynamite, I loved it but didn't think it was fabulous, I found it very funny but not "great") and to that extent I am more than happy to have many more films in that mould, as to me they are still hugely entertaining.

True "Pearls" are much rarer and of course it's a very subjective thing. "Juno" to me was a little gem of a movie as was "Little Miss Sunshine" whilst others will have far more tepid reactions to it.
They spoke to me, on a personal level. Very, very few Hollywood movies do that. Too much style over substance. I am getting so tired of perfectly blond /brunettes with silicon breasts and plastic smiles and actors who are more concerned with the size of their abs and their pay-check than with talent and the quality of the script.


I want genuine actors who give it their all and reflect the human condition in all its squalor, beauty and poignant vibrancy. Most actors I see in blockbusters wouldn't last 10 minutes on a stage, most Indie ones would strive on it. It's a completely different craft.


I feel the Hollywood formulas are just to narrow to allow for true individuality to come to the fore.

Indie movies, great, good, indifferent may be formulaic in their own way but they tick far more boxes for me.

I am so glad you mentioned "The Gods must be crazy", I hadn't thought of that movie for a long time, and it makes me want to see it again. I tried to buy the DVD a couple of years back and it wasn't available. That was a true pearl. I loved it.


Of course Indie movies can be bad, awfully written, lazy and yes even un-original but I see them as a foil against the sterile puerility Hollywood seems to strive on.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Entertainment and Arts > Movies
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top