Just a heads-up that my review -- well if you want to call it a "review," a word which several commenters have already disputed! -- of Martin Scorsese's film The Irishman went up at The Film Experience last evening -- click here to read that, if you dare.
As I've had to do here on MNPP on occasion I was coerced into defending my writing style in the comments of the piece -- demystifying intent is one of my least favorite pastimes when it comes to my writing, but let me add a little to what I said in the comments there since what I said there started growing large and unwieldy. (That said maybe go read what I said in the comments there before reading the rest of this.)
I'm a creative writer. I double majored in both Film Studies and in Poetry in college, and every time I write about film I'm trying to (improbably, perhaps foolishly) bridge the two. The very first things I remember writing as a kid, and this is no put-on, were poems that strung together nothing but movie titles. Truly horrible little things they were, with lines like "Pretty Woman Dressed to Kill / Dream a Little Dream and Stand By Me." But this fascination seems to have always been there -- of engaging with other people's work in an, uhh, atypical fashion.
I think of my reviews as a conversation. Well... I do when I'm inspired to speak with the piece of art in front of me anyway -- you can always tell I wasn't inspired when the review's a lot of plot and "this and that were good or not good." But when something moves me I want to move it back -- I want to talk to it. I want to take it up in my hands and look it over, dig around in it, and describe the thing I'm holding to you, and to myself. What the thing feels like, and what it made me feel like.
I want to engage with that Big Idea. With why they're telling this story, and what this story said to me. We've got months and months and months to dissect the pros and cons of the crafts and place them in context to other movies that have rushed to come out before the Valhalla of the Oscar Stage swallows up everything's worth. I'm just trying to engage one on one with what all of those people came together to give me, as a collaborative whole. We can, and will, work backwards from there.
The most depressing discovery I’ve made off writing on the internet for as long as I have is how desperate people are to just be told what to think— Jason Adams (@JAMNPP) September 28, 2019