My Retort to David Cronenberg, Who Said: "I think people who are saying, you know, 'Dark Knight Rises is, you know, supreme cinema art,' I don't think they know what the f*#k they're talking about."
First off, my thanks for taking James Woods to his highest level when he screamed “long live the new flesh” with some, weird, fleshy, gun…thing. You grabbed a lot of attention when you had the singer of “Blondie” reveal her breasts, so good for you.
You recently spoke with Next Movie, where you said:
"But a superhero movie, by definition, you know, it's comic book. It's for kids. It's adolescent in its core. That has always been its appeal, and I think people who are saying, you know, 'Dark Knight Rises is, you know, supreme cinema art,' I don't think they know what the f--k they're talking about."
I’ll give you your claims about “Dark Knight Rises” not being “supreme cinema art,” SPOILERS: Talia al Ghul was shoehorned in, I appreciated but ultimately hated the fanservice of adding Robin at the very last minute, and while Bane finally got a decent performance courtesy of Nolan and Tom Hardy after Schumacher reduced him to a mindless thug, he still needed subtitles for the audience to understand him.
But to your claim as a comic book movie having to cater to the adolescent?
I ultimately call, “Hogwash.”
Audiences evolve with the medium, which is why Harry Potter, as both a book and a movie, went from fairly innocent, to murder and mayhem, over the course of 10 years; a series of novels whose base audience began at a grade school level, grew with them, until they reached adulthood, much like the characters' actors did. They grew in age, as did the audience. And while you may still have 12 year olds who are just starting the get into the mythology, the core audience, the ones who where there since the beginning, are now well past their grade school years.
Such is the way for the audience for comics, even more so, arguably, since those characters have been around since the mid-‘40’s.
And that’s what so many critics and writers don’t seem to understand, you included.
Case in point: The 60’s TV Joker, played by Cesar Romero, was purely a clown, nothing more. He didn’t even bother to shave off his mustache to play the role. That’s the type of character Shumacher set out to portray with “Batman Forever,” and “Batman and Robin,” and that’s also why both films were so poorly received.
Schumacher tried to shoehorn in 60’s campiness some 30 years too late, when the source material was well on its way to the gritty and dark.
Things had already changed in the late ‘80’s, once writers like Jim Starlin decided that once comic characters like the Joker would go from laughing gas flowers, to beating the Jason Todd incantation of Robin to a bloody pulp before ultimately blowing him up in a warehouse.
Even before than, Frank Miller gave us an aged Batman set in a dystopian future that saw a Joker who’d rather snap his own neck to reduce the Dark Knight into a villain, than go back to Arkham. Miller knew that his audience wasn't grade schoolers, it was adults who had grown up with Batman, who had watched him evolve over time.
As for your upcoming “Cosmopolis?” You picked the most predominant and featured pop culture actor of his generation to star, Robert Pattinson, in an attempt to gather attention from the masses based on the celebrity surrounding the actor, than the movie itself, and yet you still have the audacity to say that comics aren’t art? Please, do yourself a favor, read ANYTHING drawn by Jim Lee, and see if you don’t feel differently.
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