What wrong with showing a little love?
So I was fortunate enough to get a night off this week and decided to frequent our local Cineplex to go see Guardians of the Galaxy 2 with Mark and his buddy. So this isn’t a review (although, yes it’s worth watching if for nothing else Kurt Russel looking like he’s actually enjoying work again) but some after thoughts of the experience based on Mark’s comment at the end of the movie. Following the 3 or so post credits scene he uttered the words (and I’m paraphrasing) “So, initial thoughts on that? Right now?” and then swiftly went on to confirm “Right now, it feels like the best movie I’ve ever seen”. So my first reaction was probably what most of us are programmed to do and responded with surprise. In my head I ran over all the movies I’d watched in my top 10 where the pacing, plot, characterizations etc. were all great and would stand the test of time much more than an MCU sequel. Following some brief (and deserved) ridicule when I started reeling of greater films, Shawshank, Usual Suspects, LA Confidential, Pulp Fiction etc. (apparently I wasn’t making a myspace page or a tinder profile) I considered his comments more and realised that he does have a very good point.
The movie was fun and certainly kept me entertained for the 150 min run time. It also will be something I recommend my other friends and wife go to see without hesitation. What more does it need to be than that?
I’ve got friends, very good friends, who I can guarantee can pick a dozen holes in any one of your favourite Movies, TV shows, Games, anything. They would no doubt highlight to me that the pacing was inconsistent or the villain was too shallow etc. along with plenty of “why didn’t they just…” questions. I’m not going to stand fast and rigorously defend the piece if someone wants to tell me how it doesn’t hold true to the source material.
It’s difficult but we do sometimes need to just think about turning off our inner critic and ignoring that small insecure part of ourselves which worries that if you enjoy something unpopular that you’ll be labelled a freak.
That’s not to say that “everything is good in its own way”, because it’s not. I’ve got my bugbears about certain series (X-Men movie rant incoming) but simply labeling these as a failure and spreading that hate only ruins what might be a great experience for others. There are plenty of movies which I’ve probably ruined for myself due to watching them a second time (Ant Man being a fine example) and some which remain fantastic as I’ve only enjoyed them the once (Shutter Island). It’s also entirely possible to enjoy watching something which is awful with the right crowd and finding that it’s awesome when you look at if a little differently (thanks xXx The Return of Xander Cage), but only for the first time of watching.
To sum up my point, not everything has to be a masterpiece which stands the test of time to be good. What matters is that for those brief few moments it might actually be the best thing you’ve ever seen or felt and that should be enough. Don’t push your dissatisfaction's onto people who haven’t experienced something themselves as they might just like it, at least for a while.
Sorry if that got mushy. This is what happens when I try to transcribe positive feelings.
I’ll get back to ranting soon enough.