Waaaaay back in 1985, an adolescent cinetrix read about Matt Groening's Life in Hell and begged, nay, pleaded that her mom somehow locate this subversive text. To her credit, she came up with Work Is Hell, the book that laid the groundwork for the cinetrix's bad-attitude work ethic ever since.
I bring this up because today I stumbled across a clip of the four Variety film critics discussing 2004 in movies [hey, everyone's doing it], and the first thing I thought of when I saw these four white guys with brown hair was the opening page of Work Is Hell, which introduces the gentle reader to the Hell universe and poses the question: "Does the cartoonist look anything like Binky [the buck-toothed protagonist rabbit]?" The answer, "Not really," runs above a drawing of Binky the rabbit with a beard and glasses, looking for all the world like Groening. Or Giamatti. Or, well, like most of America's pasty, white, middle-aged film critics.
When it comes to knowing what film critics look like, the rule should be tell, not show.
RELATED: from How to be a clever film critic, by Matt Groening, 1985.
Are you qualified to be a clever film critic?
- Did you have no friends as a child?
- Do you salivate at the smell of stale popcorn?
- Do you thrill at the prospect of spending a career writing in-depth analyses of movies aimed at subliterate 15-year-olds?
- Do you mind being loathed for your opinions?
The four types of clever film critics: Which do you aspire to be?
- Academic type: boring, unreadable
- Serious type: reveals endings
- Daily type: nice plot summaries
- TV clown: nice sweaters
For advanced clever film critics only:
Can you use "mise-en-scène" in a review that anyone will finish reading?