But, I digress...
In my opinion, the movies being produced lately have been particularly disappointing. Maybe I am slowly descending into that generation of folks who remembers when movies used to actually be good ~~ anything by Alfred Hitchcock, for instance -- "Psycho", "Dial M for Murder" or "Vertigo" -- or movies that relied on good acting, rather than explicit scenes, or full frontal nudity. Or actual dialogue rather than the "F" word in every sentence. Or, perhaps, an actual plot. I dunno, call me crazy... an actual story would be nice.
Recently I finally watched "The Kids Are All Right". I wanted to like it because it was highly recommended by so many of my friends, and it received a 94% good rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with the critique, "Worthwhile as both a well-acted ensemble piece and as a smart, warm statement on family values, The Kids Are All Right is remarkable." Really? The only good thing about that movie was the performance by the fabulous, anemic-looking Mia Wasikowska who also played Alice in "Alice in Wonderland" with Johnny Depp, and Jane in "Jane Eyre", which probably no one has seen, and which is a great movie. "The Kids Are All Right" was billed as a comedy, but it was bleak and gut-wrenching, one of the worst
There have been a few good movies in the past four or five years, "Doubt", "The Changeling", "Gran Torino", "The Wrestler", "Wall-E", "Up", "Revolutionary Road", "Rabbit Hole", "The Visitor" (my personal favourite), Woody Allen's "You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger", but for the most part it has been pretty slim pickings.
Movies used to be a fairly inexpensive form of entertainment, but now it costs a fortune for two people to go to a movie. And folks could enjoy a movie without squirming through scenes that left us feeling awkward. Of late there seems to be a spate of movies with scenes of explicit lesbian love-making (not that there's anything wrong with that...) and it feels artifical and exploitative. Do we really have to push the envelope to be entertained? When I watched "Black Swan", all I could think was what a wonderful movie that might have been under the direction of someone like Alfred Hitchcock or Sidney Pollock, or even the lyrical Clint Eastwood. They would have made it into a classic. It had all the raw potential, but fell far short of the mark. When a movie relies too much on shock value, that's all folks remember. The nuances of the plot and the actors' performances are forgotten.
C'mon, Hollywood, if you're going to take our money, please give us a product worth paying for.