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Author Topic: Is it fair that Rotten Tomatoes constantly updates critical reaction scores?  (Read 4288 times)

Offline thecolorsblend

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Martin Scorsese has expressed his distaste for Rotten Tomatoes.
I was expecting a rant. Scorsese instead gave a critique. And he's right.

Rotten Tomatoes gives the "critic" an inappropriate role in the public consumption of film. That's bad enough but, to quote myself, the fact that many of RT's source could include Cheeto-munching, basement-dwelling bloggers and puts them on the same level as real critics (which itself isn't exactly setting the bar all that high) is just poor form.

At its best, film reviews should evaluate films. "Jim Carrey returns to the role that made him a household name in Ace Ventura 2: When Nature Calls. And, to be brief, this entry falls far short of its predecessor. But in greater depth, though, blah blah blah". But a lot of reviews are mostly "look how clever I am" showcases of sarcasm. There's nothing constructive being offered to the filmmaker and nothing informative being offered to the audience.

To contrast that, I present the Richard Corliss review of Scoreses's own Gangs of New York: http://content.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1101021223-400004,00.html

That review wasn't banged out by Corliss. He thoughtfully and insightfully considered the film, offering a punchy line or two while sticking to the meat and potatoes of film criticism. It's constructive to Scoreses and informative to the audience without really giving all that much away about the film itself. The twists and turns the movie takes are hinted at but not disclosed in the review. A reader intrigued by Corliss might go on to see Gangs of New York for the first time with an appreciation for what he's seeing on the one hand and surprises at where the story goes on the other hand.

We live in wretched times.

Offline The Dark Knight

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RT helps make the reviewer the star of the show. Certain reviewers love the idea their comments can make or break people. They love the idea they're holding all the power and can theoretically influence public opinion en masse. When a journalist slaps a headline on a story they're basically telling us how we all should think and feel about something. Just think about that for a moment. It's just one person's opinion but broadcasted to the world, 'legitimized' by the organizations's masthead. Anyone can write a review in the age of the internet. Is my opinion any more important or valid than yours? Nope. It's just my opinion. To some people BvS is the worst, and to me it's one of the best. My issue is when opinion is passed off as fact, and I think RT has that problem.  "People seem to take pleasure in seeing films and filmmakers rejected" most definitely applies to Zack Snyder. RT therefore is a game some reviewers play. It's less about analysis and more about a number.

Offline The Laughing Fish

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I was expecting a rant. Scorsese instead gave a critique. And he's right.

Rotten Tomatoes gives the "critic" an inappropriate role in the public consumption of film. That's bad enough but, to quote myself, the fact that many of RT's source could include Cheeto-munching, basement-dwelling bloggers and puts them on the same level as real critics (which itself isn't exactly setting the bar all that high) is just poor form.

The bloggers are filth, but I doubt any "real critics" exist nowadays. A while ago, I saw this blurb in a 'Fresh' review of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 on the website:

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"The best sequel years. Though I didn’t understand the plot or the dialogue".
http://lasvegas.informermg.com/2017/05/04/galaxy-of-the-guardians-vol-2-review/

 ???

Call me crazy, but a movie isn't good if the plot and the dialogue is impossible to understand. Please tell me this was misunderstood satire.

If the executives in Hollywood are so deeply concerned about Rotten Tomatoes hurting the industry, then maybe they should stop promoting their movies with the stupid Certified Fresh logo printed on the posters. Otherwise, they're legitimising the website with integrity and a brand to be trusted.

As a side-note: garbage like Collider must really love RT. They only talk about summer blockbusters and treat cinema itself as a team sport by comparing pointless aggregate scores and box office results. Take RT away, and their voice diminishes. Fat chance for them to ever dissect and analyse the nuances or subtext in a film.

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We live in wretched times.

Agreed.


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Jonathan Nolan: He [Batman] has this one rule, as the Joker says in The Dark Knight. But he does wind up breaking it. Does he break it in the third film?

Christopher Nolan: He breaks it in...

Jonathan Nolan: ...the first two.

Source: http://books.google.com.au/books?id=uwV8rddtKRgC&pg=PR8&dq=But+he+does+wind+up+breaking+it.&hl=en&sa=X&ei

Offline thecolorsblend

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If the executives in Hollywood are so deeply concerned about Rotten Tomatoes hurting the industry, then maybe they should stop promoting their movies with the stupid Certified Fresh logo printed on the posters. Otherwise, they're legitimising the website with integrity and a brand to be trusted.
My sense of the "film industry" is that different departments are constantly at each other's throats.

The marketing department never knew what to do with, for example, Idiocracy. And to be fair, that is a difficult film to market to wide audiences. As important as that film might be, it doesn't lend itself to easy marketing the way, oh I dunno, Hot Tub Time Machine 3 might.

It's easy to envision the creative side, the filmmakers, chafing under idiotic (to them) marketing directives. For that matter, I'd imagine the marketing folks can't understand what filmmakers don't understand about "We can't put $h*t like that in a movie intended for families".

Then you've probably got the executives caught in the middle when they'd probably prefer sailing off on their yachts to snort some cocaine or something rather than stuck playing referee between two different groups of people they probably hate equally.

It's easy for the marketing department to appeal to authority by slapping an 89% Certified Fresh sticker on a Blu-Ray cover rather than reinvent the wheel with new marketing techniques every time they release a new tentpole feature. That's not me validating Rotten Tomatoes, you understand. Just a pragmatic statement of the facts. Hyping a movie's RT score as though it actually means something is the path of least resistance.

But it looks like all these chefs in the kitchen are starting to harm the final product. It's interesting to think what the final outcome could be.

Offline riddler

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I do like Batman Forever but to play devils advocate a little, there is a market for modern reviews of older movies. Sometimes movies general reception change over time. It's been well documented in this thread that Batman Forever was well received in 1995 but has seen the reception take a tumble. Another movie to come out that year - Waterworld was heavily panned but is now considered a rather entertaining film. The reason why modern reviews have their places is that we can't go back and see Batman Forever and Waterworld in 1995 ever again. People deciding whether to see an older film may be more interested what others are saying about the film now instead of against it's release.

That being said I still put the most stock in the early reviews especially in this day and age with the internet. The most objective reviews are always the first to come out for the fact that the writer has less of a chance to match their review with other critics or the general consensus and may not even have the opportunity to research the film. It's harder to give a review on a production nobody else has seen yet.

 

    
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