Bless This Mess

SadakoMoose

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"This movie isn't wish fulfillment. If it was wish fulfillment, they'd be blowing up Hollywood studios, not a bunch of dumb kids on a show."
It may not be wish fulfillment for you, but it is for the OTHER dumb kids on the internet.
You know, the ones that won't shut up about Idiocracy or Brave New World or etc.

Personally, I feel that political discourse is better than it was even 10 years ago, the only difference being that we have so many different avenues for discourse that we can now SEE all of it.
Accusing the sitting president of being an Anarchist/Communist/Socialist/Nazi is absolutely nothing new, it's just now we have entire cable channels dedicated to it, whereas before we would have only said things like that at the water cooler, or at our local political meetings.
So is there a problem with the amount of privatized news coverage and therefore with the inevitable massive polarization that comes with creating an audience? Yes, and you can demonstrate this rather easily. But has the actual discourse and disposition of politics itself changed much in the last century? Also yes, but I'd say it has indeed gotten better or at least less violent and racist.

The problem with me having these views is that no one will really take me seriously, not within "thinking" circles anyway. My optimism can all be chalked up to youthful inexperience, naivety, or not having read the right books.
The last time it was POPULAR in intellectual circles to say that things are better "now", Leibniz and Spinoza were still alive. And then Candide came out, and soon enough you weren't allowed to call yourself a real intellectual or visionary without ALSO being a constant naysayer or a pessimist.
 

omicron1

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malestrithe said:
omicron1 said:
So, you like it because you agree with it?

Question: would you be similarly amused (or at least accepting) with a movie revolving around killing MSNBC hosts, NPR "reporters," Al Sharpton, fanatical atheists like Dan Savage, and everyone who wants to kill North Carolinans? What do you think the metascores for the two would be, all other things being equal - and is it even remotely acceptable if one side gets savaged when the other gets a free pass? I'm inclined to think not.
The same question was posed to Roger Ebert when Outfoxed was released. He gave it a positive review and every political pundit asked him, "would you do the same thing for an anti MSNBC documentary?" After a week of hearing this, his response was simple and elegant: At this point I don't know because I have not seen it yet. Make the movie, let me watch it, and let me get back to you." The next year three anti- MSNBC documentaries came out and, long after any controversy was forgotten, he gave them all positive reviews. Was not to cover his ass, but because he enjoyed the movies.

I'm inclined to think that Bob would say the same thing and to think anything else is only meant to look for a fight.
This may be a reasonable assumption to make for any individual reviewer. I concede that.
However, the meta-result will still have some very interesting perturbations - where MovieBob and the reviewing public treat this anvilicious movie as a positive thing, there are many examples (to name two, Expelled and Passion) of movies whose preachy approach to their subject matter was taken as a negative value for the film itself in a significant portion of reviews.
To wit: a large portion of the industry has a very specific viewpoint here. And while any individual may be able to avoid putting his personal bias into play, the aggregate is that movies/media that don't fit the picture get (pardon the pun) crucified for it - they're preachy or overbearing or biased - while movies that fit with the reviewers' worldview routinely "make you think."
As a side note, the phrase "makes you think" in these contexts almost never means "made me think." Nine times out of ten, the reviewer is in complete agreement with whatever viewpoint is "deep" or "affecting." Which is interesting, to say the least.
 

malestrithe

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BrotherRool said:
And that's just a page worth of comments before your or mine in this thread alone, and I think it's safe to say that some people would not be saying this if the film was about stuff that they like or hold dear.

If Jack Thompson decided to shoot a bunch of people who play violent-video games for instance. I don't think we'd get past the message to judge the movie on quality alone (Bob may or may not, his reviews of the Fast and Furious and American Pie have been negative just because they are designed to be liked by the sort of people he doesn't like) so I wouldn't say I've known him to not less bias get in the way.

Roger Ebert on the otherhand is a genius who brings such a delightful sentiment to every review and it's no disrespect to say that Bob has not yet reached those heights. But even Roger Ebert flinched a bit at this films message.
You might be right. Bob does seem to express more vitriol to movies that he does not like. Personally, I do not like wild accusations about whether or not the reverse situation were true. That gets into all sorts of personal biases and wish fulfillment fantasies. The only honest answer in those situations is I do not know because it has not happened.

As for the God Bless America, I'll give it a pass. It sounds like it is something I won't like. I have this intense hatred for movies that are disorganized messes and this movie feels like one of those.
 

BrotherRool

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malestrithe said:
You might be right. Bob does seem to express more vitriol to movies that he does not like. Personally, I do not like wild accusations about whether or not the reverse situation were true. That gets into all sorts of personal biases and wish fulfillment fantasies. The only honest answer in those situations is I do not know because it has not happened.

As for the God Bless America, I'll give it a pass. It sounds like it is something I won't like. I have this intense hatred for movies that are disorganized messes and this movie feels like one of those.
I have to admit I didn't read Omnicron as particularly attacking Bob as attacking peoples reactions as a whole, which we've already seen as entirely valid.

And Bob is a good guy but he really is biased in some reviews and it's an uncomfortable bias we shouldn't let sit by because everytime you let someone call someone else a gun-nut douchebag or the other stuff, your letting that become an acceptable way of viewing whole swathes of people.

Bob isn't a particularly bad case and it's something that affects all of us in all society. Just think of all the people who write about games being made worse because CoD morons can't handle a game with depth. You can't think these things and you can't let them become the norm because we're writing off whole swathes of the population just because they aren't us.

I don't think in this review Bob really expressed any bias at all and I don't really read in what he wrote any sort of approvement of the characters actions, my gripes are with other reviews, but I think Omnicron was very right to put a check on people liking this because it hates reality TV and we don't like reality TV etc
 

EvilRoy

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I haven't seen this one, but Bob's description kind of makes me want to. Not for any of the 'right' reasons of course.

To me this sounds like every B-Z grade movie I've watched on a bored Sunday afternoon. The way its described, in fact, makes me think of something somthing of the Third Reich. I'll have to look up the actual name in a bit here, but it really does sound like a nazi-sploitation/revenge-sploitation movie without any nazis. I don't even know what you could call it, western-sploitation?

At any rate, low grade sleaze is what I enjoy watching in my down time, and this movie sounds like a high budget version of that. Take it how you will I suppose.
 

EvilRoy

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Aah, I had the wrong one in mind. The name of it is 'Last Orgy of the Third Reich', but that's not the one I was thinking of. I'll update you all if I remember it, as I'm sure none of you will get to bed tonight wondering what you may be missing out on.

I remembered:

It reminds me of 'Las Vegas Bloodbath', where a guy catches his wife and then decides all women are scum and starts randomly killing them. Also he shoots a male bartender for some reason.

Anyway, yeah: Classic revenge-sploitation. It has the barest edges of a theme, tailored in such a way that people can be murdered on screen for entertainment.
 

malestrithe

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BrotherRool said:
I have to admit I didn't read Omnicron as particularly attacking Bob as attacking peoples reactions as a whole, which we've already seen as entirely valid.

And Bob is a good guy but he really is biased in some reviews and it's an uncomfortable bias we shouldn't let sit by because everytime you let someone call someone else a gun-nut douchebag or the other stuff, your letting that become an acceptable way of viewing whole swathes of people.

Bob isn't a particularly bad case and it's something that affects all of us in all society. Just think of all the people who write about games being made worse because CoD morons can't handle a game with depth. You can't think these things and you can't let them become the norm because we're writing off whole swathes of the population just because they aren't us.

I don't think in this review Bob really expressed any bias at all and I don't really read in what he wrote any sort of approvement of the characters actions, my gripes are with other reviews, but I think Omnicron was very right to put a check on people liking this because it hates reality TV and we don't like reality TV etc
I did not think he was objecting to what Bob said either. I'm objecting to the whole reverse hypothetical situation, where if the reverse situation were true, would you.... That line of thinking bugs me. We do not know because it has not happened.

I'm not defending Bob either. I've called him out on plenty of things.

Not everyone thinks stuff from their childhood is sacred.

I dislike Transformers not because its from my childhood, nor because Bay directed it. I dislike them for being disjointed messes scriptwise.

I don't like the Fast and Furious movies, but I am not offended they exist either.

While Halo could be interpreted as a racist game, not all of the players are neo-Nazis.
 

BrotherRool

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malestrithe said:
I'm objecting to the whole reverse hypothetical situation, where if the reverse situation were true, would you.... That line of thinking bugs me. We do not know because it has not happened.
I guess in some ways that's fair enough. I guess it'd be easy to get in the habit of using against other people 'well he'd have thought this if this came out' which is what you were talking about?

But as a thought experiment it's a useful one for yourself and other people, it just needs to be the question not the criticism itself (criticism is fine if there's evidence for it though)
 

Tanis

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Since when did being a full on asshat become political?

When Beck compares anything he dislikes to Nazis, that's called being a douche bag.
It doesn't matter if you like or dislike the group/person he's talking about.
 

ANImaniac89

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God Bless America is the second best movie I've seen all year, Avengers being the first.
And yeah the thing is preachy as hell with its message, but its a message that NEEDS to be given in our "modern" world.
 

malestrithe

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BrotherRool said:
malestrithe said:
I'm objecting to the whole reverse hypothetical situation, where if the reverse situation were true, would you.... That line of thinking bugs me. We do not know because it has not happened.
I guess in some ways that's fair enough. I guess it'd be easy to get in the habit of using against other people 'well he'd have thought this if this came out' which is what you were talking about?

But as a thought experiment it's a useful one for yourself and other people, it just needs to be the question not the criticism itself (criticism is fine if there's evidence for it though)
Funnily enough I do that on things where there is 2 equally valid choices. I tend to do it with nostalgic souls who think stuff from childhood is better because of no other reason than it's from their childhood.

I just never do it when the reverse example does not exist. In this case, the reverse example does not exist.
 

Beardly

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omicron1 said:
So, you like it because you agree with it?

Question: would you be similarly amused (or at least accepting) with a movie revolving around killing MSNBC hosts, NPR "reporters," Al Sharpton, fanatical atheists like Dan Savage, and everyone who wants to kill North Carolinans? What do you think the metascores for the two would be, all other things being equal - and is it even remotely acceptable if one side gets savaged when the other gets a free pass? I'm inclined to think not.
So, have you ever listened to NPR? I'm asking because it seems like anyone wants to hold something up as the liberal equivalent to Fox News they go to NPR without ever actually listening to it.
 

omicron1

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Beardly said:
omicron1 said:
So, you like it because you agree with it?

Question: would you be similarly amused (or at least accepting) with a movie revolving around killing MSNBC hosts, NPR "reporters," Al Sharpton, fanatical atheists like Dan Savage, and everyone who wants to kill North Carolinans? What do you think the metascores for the two would be, all other things being equal - and is it even remotely acceptable if one side gets savaged when the other gets a free pass? I'm inclined to think not.
So, have you ever listened to NPR? I'm asking because it seems like anyone wants to hold something up as the liberal equivalent to Fox News they go to NPR without ever actually listening to it.
Eeeeyup. Although a more accurate counterpart would be MSNBC, as both seem determined to out-bias the other.

NPR is as follows: Democrat says something? "Let's bring him on and let him talk about it!" Republican says something? "But as Dina Temple-raston reports, that's not actually true. So we've brought on someone to discredit it."
 

BrotherRool

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malestrithe said:
Funnily enough I do that on things where there is 2 equally valid choices. I tend to do it with nostalgic souls who think stuff from childhood is better because of no other reason than it's from their childhood.

I just never do it when the reverse example does not exist. In this case, the reverse example does not exist.
Imagination is an important part of the thinking process! Theory: If x^2 is even x is even. What if x was odd? Then it'd =2k+1 => x^2 =2(2k^2+2k)+1 = odd, so it doesn't exist so x is even. :D

Theory: I like this film because of it's quality, not because I agree with the ideals.
What if the ideals were anti-christian? Then I'd probably object so how I agree with the ideals must affect my enjoyment of the film.

The only case where it doesn't apply is if you think there isn't the possibility of the other film existing and that's rarely true. Even then you'd basically be saying 'I like this because it agrees with my beliefs, luckily my beliefs are correct so the film is correct'
 

Beardly

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omicron1 said:
Beardly said:
omicron1 said:
So, you like it because you agree with it?

Question: would you be similarly amused (or at least accepting) with a movie revolving around killing MSNBC hosts, NPR "reporters," Al Sharpton, fanatical atheists like Dan Savage, and everyone who wants to kill North Carolinans? What do you think the metascores for the two would be, all other things being equal - and is it even remotely acceptable if one side gets savaged when the other gets a free pass? I'm inclined to think not.
So, have you ever listened to NPR? I'm asking because it seems like anyone wants to hold something up as the liberal equivalent to Fox News they go to NPR without ever actually listening to it.
Eeeeyup. Although a more accurate counterpart would be MSNBC, as both seem determined to out-bias the other.

NPR is as follows: Democrat says something? "Let's bring him on and let him talk about it!" Republican says something? "But as Dina Temple-raston reports, that's not actually true. So we've brought on someone to discredit it."
I feel like you can't really compare that to Fox News's "Shout at anyone who I disagree with until their segment is over then pretend I won the argument" tactic.

Edit: When I say you can't compare them I mean in terms of what this movie is talking about. The movie isn't about bias in news but more the idea that society is devolving into a place where people can't seem to talk civilly about politics.
 

omicron1

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Beardly said:
omicron1 said:
Beardly said:
omicron1 said:
So, you like it because you agree with it?

Question: would you be similarly amused (or at least accepting) with a movie revolving around killing MSNBC hosts, NPR "reporters," Al Sharpton, fanatical atheists like Dan Savage, and everyone who wants to kill North Carolinans? What do you think the metascores for the two would be, all other things being equal - and is it even remotely acceptable if one side gets savaged when the other gets a free pass? I'm inclined to think not.
So, have you ever listened to NPR? I'm asking because it seems like anyone wants to hold something up as the liberal equivalent to Fox News they go to NPR without ever actually listening to it.
Eeeeyup. Although a more accurate counterpart would be MSNBC, as both seem determined to out-bias the other.

NPR is as follows: Democrat says something? "Let's bring him on and let him talk about it!" Republican says something? "But as Dina Temple-raston reports, that's not actually true. So we've brought on someone to discredit it."
I feel like you can't really compare that to Fox News's "Shout at anyone who I disagree with until their segment is over then pretend I won the argument" tactic.
Which is why my Fox comparison was with MSNBC. NPR was there mainly as a counterpart to "right-wing talk radio hosts" - again, not as strong, but what can I say? Republicans own talk radio.