By Ray Pride Pride@moviecitynews.com

Emily Yoshida

“I try not to discuss the conditions of the screenings at which I see the films I review, for obvious reasons. But I feel like it’s only right, for the sake of transparency and instructiveness, to discuss the New York City screening of Daddy’s Home 2, which was a semipublic “sneak preview” of the film alongside the press screening, as so many of the larger studio releases are. Aside from the usual multiplex audience grievances, I also had a grown adult man threaten to “start some trouble” with me after I asked his wife if she could turn off her iPhone flashlight during the movie. (It takes a lot of tact and nerve to shush or ask anything of your fellow moviegoers, especially when the viewing experience they’re daring to sully is Daddy’s Home 2.) Anyway, this angry man loved the movie, as did the rest of the packed house, who were eating up the misadventures of Mel Gibson and Mark Wahlberg with a spoon. I say this not to denigrate them, but to note that nothing I say after this paragraph matters.”
~ Emily Yoshida

 

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“Ten years ago at Telluride, I said on a panel that theatrical distribution was dying. It seemed obvious to me. I was surprised how many in the audience violently objected: ‘People will always want to go to the movies!’ That’s true, but it’s also true that theatrical cinema as we once knew it has died. Theatrical cinema is now Event Cinema, just as theatrical plays and musical performances are Events. No one just goes to a movie. It’s a planned occasion. Four types of Event Cinema remain.
1. Spectacle (IMAX-style blockbusters)
2. Family (cartoon like features)
3. Horror (teen-driven), and
4. Film Club (formerly arthouse but now anything serious).

There are isolated pockets like black cinema, romcom, girl’s-night-out, seniors, teen gross-outs, but it’s primarily those four. Everything else is TV. Now I have to go back to episode five of ‘Looming Tower.'”
~ Paul Schrader

“Because of my relative candor on Twitter regarding why I quit my day job, my DMs have overflowed with similar stories from colleagues around the globe. These peeks behind the curtains of film festivals, venues, distributors and funding bodies weren’t pretty. Certain dismal patterns recurred (and resonated): Boards who don’t engage with or even understand their organization’s artistic mission and are insensitive to the diverse neighborhood in which their organization’s venue is located; incompetent founders and/or presidents who create only obstacles, never solutions; unduly empowered, Trumpian bean counters who chip away at the taste and experiences that make organizations’ cultural offerings special; expensive PR teams that don’t bring to the table a bare-minimum familiarity with the rich subcultural art form they’re half-heartedly peddling as “product”; nonprofit arts organizations for whom art now ranks as a distant-second goal behind profit.”
~ Eric Allen Hatch