At this point, I've honestly gotten over the persistently greedy strategies that Hollywood studios have employed, most noticeably so in the last decade--that model that drowns us with remakes and sequels. Everything is potential franchise material, am I right? No, what irks me even more is the sheer plethora of whining movie crowds who get on their high horses and vehemently call out the absence of creativity and inspiration in the film industry. This message of mine is for those of you who talk that easy talk and yet decide to visit your nearest multiplex to see Furious 7 instead of the local indie theater to witness something like Foxcatcher or Ex Machina. Saving those treats for Netflix (or even worse, torrenting) is the most unhelpful, obnoxious thing you can do in "helping" the visionaries and ambitious storytellers. One day, some of you guys are all over the internet complaining about the utter drought of original films, and the next day, you're asking why an Inception or Gone Girl sequel hasn't been announced yet. Seriously, one listener on AMC's "Movie Talk" podcast really wonders why the studio hasn't implored Nolan into producing a sequel to the wildly successful original masterpiece, Inception. Really, whose side are you on?!
Though it's difficult to accept, understand that not every successful film (be it a blockbuster or a drama/thriller) needs a follow-up. In fact, we should be living in a world where only 5% or perhaps 10%--just to be generous--of successful films are expected to continue on with more installments rather than 90% of them. I know many of you are smart enough to know that Hollywood doesn't have an unlimited budget to spend both on unique films and superhero franchises in equal proportionality. So, I won't bother to delve into that point as it's been brought up numerous times already. After all, the direction of revenue streams guides the future behavior of these studios. The more successful blockbusters, the more blockbusters there'll be as a result; and thus the cheaper the dramas and thrillers will become.
People seem to believe that everything is fine and dandy because so many indies have been coming out recently--that their number far overwhelm the typical big-budget action extravaganzas. Sure there are, but how about those mid-budget films that should be sitting between those noticeably low-budgeted cinematic efforts and the big-event tent-poles? Fine, forget about mid-budget. How about those $150 million motion pictures that aren't associated with any comic books or other preexisting properties? We can at least have that, right? Well, it turns out that we can only rely on Christopher Nolan for those. (The studio doesn't even trust Steven Spielberg with such budgets.) So, that's, what, 1 or 2 original epics every two years?
This is a common argument made by cinephiles who also don't get that this is an issue actually perpetuated by narrow-minded audiences and fanboys. I'm even willing to state that Hollywood's lack of imagination and sophistication matches that of its audiences'. If you're not willing to stray outside of the box, don't be surprised if Hollywood isn't doing the same. If you don't want to listen to your passionate-cinephile friends who're raving about the latest brilliant drama, take a look at the consequences. When Nightcrawler takes in at least $100 million at the box office, that's when we'll get to see more of such uncompromisingly immoral and fascinating cinematic ventures; it's as simple as that. So, every time you're in line for the latest mass-marketed adventure, remember that you missed out on a lot of interestingly different movies. Will we be getting less The Godfather's and Dog Day Afternoon's and The Deer Hunter's this generation because of you? Probably.
Note: Bravo to the people who attend both the blockbusters and the smaller films! There aren't many of you out there though.
Further (updated) note: Here's a recent example of how laughably hypocritical audiences are. Now that Mad Max: Fury Road has hit the screens with a refreshing take on (practical and inventive) action, everyone is applauding it and self-righteously denouncing the "CGI fests" that have been dominating the movie market for a while now. Do you guys not remember praising Avengers 2: Age of Ultron to the heavens only two weeks ago? That film is the epitome of a lazy and formulaic, CGI-permeated blockbuster. You guys really crack me up.
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