Movie reviews: a review

Writing internet rants about horror movies isn't at all like writing music or fiction or any other sort of good real thing of substance. As I type these there's always a troubling murmer of shame and uncertaintly in the back of my mind. What the hell am I doing? Why would, or should, anyone give a rat's ass what I think of some movie? And in the bigger picture, do human opinions of something so subjective as art even have any value or relevance whatsoever?

I am of course not a film critic. I'm not even a film buff, and I'm especially not a film critic. Even if someone were willing to pay me for ranting about movies I don't think I could bear the stigma of that title. To paraphrase the old saying, those who can, do; those who can't, teach, and those who can't even teach become critics. I mean how can professional opinion-haver be a job? (Penn Jillete is technically still a magician). There's no such thing as knowing how to like movies better than anyone else, so how the hell is anyone qualified to be a so-called movie expert? Can't we just cut out all this reviewing and make up our own minds about Leprechaun in Da Hood?

Ideally yes, but in actual practise that would mean you'd have to see Leprechaun in Da Hood. Life's too short, and even crackwhores probably have something better to do than watch some of these things. Opinion may vary on The Blair Witch Project, but absolutely no one likes Jason Goes To Hell (do they?). Maybe nobody told you and you saw it. Maybe society failed you.

So okay, reviews can actually help us avoid the deadly rays of certain deep sequels and Sci-Fi Channel original movies. Sometimes the collective wisdom and experience of the tribe should be heeded. But there's a big difference between "the yellow berries are poison" and "Frank Langella was a better Dracula than Louis Jourdan".

So honestly I think the dirty little secret of movie reviews is that the whole business is pretty much bogus. I read a lot of reviews and I loudly, obnoxiously disagree with them right about 50% of the time. I mean have you seen the reviews people post on Netflix or Amazon? I did once for a second and learned a painful lesson about using the scroll wheel. If you're lucky enough to find an opinion dispenser with whom you share some kind of creepy twin-like simpatico then maybe you can consider not completely disregarding everything they say, but the vast majority of reviews are probably not much more useful than a tip on the horses scribbled on the door of a toilet stall.

Information can I think still be gained however as long as I take with a grain of salt the reviewer's not even my opinion as to the quality of the production. A review can still tell me the movie exists, and to what genre it belongs. There are so many horror movies now that not only are we unable to see them all, it's no longer even possible to see the titles of them all. I mean did you know the Germans made a version of Lovecraft's story The Colour Out Of Space? Or that there's this super fucked up Japanese movie about...okay you could probably guess that, but my point is there's just not enough time to keep up with it all unless you give up your dolls. So even if reviews can't tell you what to watch, they can at least tell you what you could watch.

My point is read all my reviews so you get the +.05% movie selection accuracy buff.

But honestly none of that is why I write this crapola. I do it because I'm a hermit with no friends who lives alone in the woods. Cabin fever is a real thing, though not accurately depicted in the Cabin Fever series of horrible movies. One common misconception about people who talk to themselves is that they're talking to themselves; more likely they're talking to other people who aren't in the frame. Humans are hardwired to communicate, and if denied long enough it'll come out in some godawful thing like this.

So I guess I started writing these blurbs sometime back in the mid 90s after I'd watched a great horror movie, 'cause what do we do when we see a great movie? We tell someone so the whole tribe advances. Well as much as I like cats it turns out they're not entirely recognised as "someone" by the area of the right cerebral hemisphere that makes us want to constantly stream information from our pie holes. So, all I could think to do was sit down and start typing movie opinions for nobody in particular. And you know, it kind of made me feel a little bit better, and that leads to addiction. So here we are. Or here I am, to be more accurate.

Of course I sometimes feel pretty pathetic about it all, but then I remind myself of all the enjoyment I've gotten from things other people have probably made or done for reasons at least as vain and narcissistic as mine. Actors? Come on. Hell I just watched a youtube video of a guy beaming in front of the camera showing the world the horror DVDs he got for his birthday like anyone should give a damn, and I liked it. I don't want everyone to just shut up and get over themselves. Blow me away. Or even fail horribly trying.

That to me is the real point of it all. We just like writing and talking about horror stuff. It's what us monkeys do - we see something exciting and then all run together chattering and pointing and gesticulating wildly about it. I don't need to learn anything useful from a horror blog or podcast. Hell the first thing I do when I go to a horror website is read reviews of all the movies I've already seen. Maybe I'll see something I agree with and feel all not so alone.

My point here is yes I say movie reviews can actually have some minor dubious value, but for god's sake don't take them too seriously because they're completely wrong almost half the time, and mostly just for fun. Make sure however that you only get your reviews from actual horror fans, not pompous bastards who wouldn't know a good horror movie from their anus. Horror is a different animal than regular people movies. Standard issue critics have no ken of such things and no more business reviewing horror than I do talking about Summer blockbusters.

Now enough ranting about movie rants already. Go actually read some. Wait no read the disclaimer and viewer bias and rating system sections first.