Plus: a manic study in decadence and decline, assigned!
I'm sorry but I have to say that I really like going to the movies to be wowed. I like a lot action, special effects, and beautiful scenes.
Ì didn't see The Fableman's but my understanding is its somewhat based on Stephen Spielberg's family. I don't want to say that his family is not an interesting subject for a movie, but I'm not paying $10 to sit for an hour and a half watching a movie about somebody's family no matter how interesting they are. When I want to experience a deep, moving and funny story, I read a book. When I go to a movie I want an experience.
I think Babylon is hurt by the framing that it's a prestige movie. I defiantly categorize it more as big budget spectacular than prestige-y Oscar movie ¯\_(ツ)_/¯. I also think a lot more people would enjoy it if they go in knowing it's going be giving Hollywood Babylon rather than The Parade's Gone By . . .
Say I can't find a theater within a reasonable distance that can do the new Avatar justice. What's good to see this weekend, Sonny?
Thanks to the Alamo moviepass "buy one month get one month free" promo, I decided to go see Babylon last weekend. And it's a film I can't help but feel was really close to being a truly great film if it had one more pass on the script and a very tight editor willing to cut about 30 minutes in it. I think its biggest hold-up was the lack of a real narrative drive to it beyond "some people did some things in some time in some place when things were changing and they didn't know what they were doing"
From a purely financial prospective it probably makes sense to just put up the prestige stuff on streaming but it makes me kind of sad. I'm in my early 40s and generally like a lot of movies that are considered arthouse or prestige. When I do see these movies in theatres, I am also often the youngest person in the theatre by about 25-30 years or so, maybe more. This was true before the pandemic (Kore'era Hirokazu's Shoplifters and My Little Sister) and after the pandemic (Drive My Car).
There was a cultural sea change and I think it happened before Avatar but the explosion of the MCU and movies like Avatar continued the trend. I think in the 1960s, there was a bit of cultural cache for at least attempting to be into what would become the Criterion Cannon. It was exciting and different than the stuff produced by Hollywood. Now this cultural cache appears to be gone except among a small section of society (aka SLAC graduates).
I went to see Avatar in 4D... That, in case you're wondering, is ONE MORE D than 3. The closest thing I can relate it to is Disney's "Soaring over America" at Disney's California Adventure. It was NOT the usual moviegoing experience by any means and at $27.50 a ticket wasn't priced as such. As a mid sixties aged man and regular movie attendee I gotta tell you I thoroughly enjoyed the "ride", even if I was a little sore leaving the theater.I am old enough to have lived through many theater gimmicks, ie "The Tingler", Smellovision, Hypnoscope, and others but this is the first time that I actually left the theater with a smile on my face. 4D worked.