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Old 09-19-2012, 10:06 AM   #197
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Default Re: What's So Bad About Superman Returns?

Originally Posted by charl_huntress View Post
I can't speak for everyone, but I would level these same criticisms at any portrayal of Superman which included what SR did. This is not specific to the movie. If this was a comic, elseworld or otherwise, I would say the exact same things for the exact same reasons.
In that case, you’re being evenhanded and consistent with your analyses. I can only say that I have run into (other) folk who were both staunch critics of SR and staunch fans of (for example) SII. Yet some of the specific reasons cited in criticizing SR would seem to apply, just as easily, to SII. And it strikes me as sound to draw attention to the apparent bias and/or inconsistency.

I hate when people say other people's criticisms are invalid because they feel what you are critiquing isn't relevant. You don't feel the same. That's fine, but it's condescending to say, "You aren't criticising the right thing, so you're just wrong." Again, that's why I generally don't like reading SR supporter posts. Eventually the debate devolves to...."you didn't like it because you didn't get it."
It’s not that someone’s opinions or personal tastes are wrong. But forums like this would be rather sterile and boring places if everyone just expressed a raw judgment without further commentary. (“You like chocolate? Hey, I like vanilla.” The end.) A post/review/article - positive or negative - customarily includes reasons for the opinion. And it’s those stated reasons that are available to scrutiny and possible rebuttal - because they may be invalid.

Let me give you a hypothetical example of this. Suppose I say that Movie X is bad. Well, that’s my opinion - so it’s not wrong. But then I’m inspired to defend my view and I offer one reason (among others) why I think it’s bad: there’s a conspicuous plot hole in the second act! As it turns out, however, I missed a crucial bit of dialogue that explains/fixes the alleged plot hole. Now this correction doesn’t change my impression of the movie - I still think it’s bad. But if I want to continue the discussion, I need to reconsider my arguments and come up with different/better criticisms. Moreover, it was entirely fair for the opposition to point out my mistake. In doing so, they’re not saying that my overall opinion is wrong, just that my stated reasons are (or might be) suspect.

So back to (less hypothetical) SR. I do not declare someone’s negative view of the film to be mistaken (or that I can logically argue them into liking it). But if they’re moved to provide analysis in support of their conclusion, that analysis is open to my best efforts at rebuttal. (That is, I’m disputing the mode and structure of the specific argument, not the final opinion.) To disqualify this on the basis that it represents an unwelcome challenge to personal tastes would reduce our discussions, it seems to me, to uninteresting - and very short! - statements (again - “You like chocolate. I like vanilla.”).

(Yes, I’m aware that this post is “philosophical” - which you’ve mentioned is not your thing. Apologies. )

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