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Old 07-14-2014, 10:18 AM   #1
GremlinZilla89
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Default Can An Opinion Be Wrong???

I know this thread has the potential to get hostile quickly, so I humbly ask to take nothing personal that may be discussed and be on our best behavior

One of the biggest tenants of the internet (and the world in general really) is that an opinion can't be wrong. I simply, find this in itself to be wrong.

Now, lets use some basic movie examples. These examples aren't meant to turn into a discussion on the merit of the films themselves, but illustrate my point. I am not knocking any of the films I mention, they are simply used for example purposes.

Say somebody says "I like Evil Dead better than Lawrence of Arabia." Ok, fine. No problem. Understandable. Both are classics in their own right. I totally get preferring one over the other. There is nothing wrong with personal preference.
But if the same person says "Evil Dead is a better film than Lawrence of Arabia", that is when I pause and say, "hmmmmm, no." From all basic reasoning and object observation, it is clear that Lawrence is simply a better made film on all levels than the Evil Dead thus the opinion that Evil Dead is a better film is wrong imo. That may sound like a semantics game, but this is the kind of stuff you run into with people online and in real life. And not just about film or games or TV.

Or better yet lets use an old standby: The Godfather. "I don't like the Godfather." Ok, cool. I get it. It's not everyone's cup of java. But "The Godfather is a bad movie." doesn't gel with me and I simply would say "you're wrong." I think there is a difference between voicing a personal taste over something and making claims that something is just bad or horrible because you don't like it. There has to be SOME level of objectivity to most opinions. On a basic objective level, craft has to at least be acknowledged. I myself really dislike "Tree of Life". I can't stand it. BUT, I would never call it a bad film on a technical level.

Opinions need to have a logical base and some knowledge behind them to be worth listening to and to take seriously. Opinions can often be founded on ignorance of fact, thus making them close to, or straight up wrong.

One more example. Take say, the CGI from TASM2. Opinions that it "looks just a PS3" game were abound. Yet, the objective proof that the visuals in that film are much more realistic and detailed than game graphics is right in front of your face. You can think the CGI is below par or nothing new, but PS3 level bad? No, that simply is not the case. At all.

Again, I don't want this post to come off as snooty or elitist. I just genuinely think that some opinions can be wrong if they are absolutely ignorant of fact, or fail to take objective evidence into account.

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Old 07-14-2014, 10:35 AM   #2
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Default Re: Can An Opinion Be Wrong???

I agree. Your example of "Evil Dead is a better film than Lawrence of Arabia" is spot on and shows that in some cases, someone's "opinion" can be wrong.

You want to see some real life examples, go to the boards or comments section(at very bottom of a page for a movie or actor)over at IMDB.

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Old 07-14-2014, 10:44 AM   #3
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Default Re: Can An Opinion Be Wrong???

I listen to anyone's opinion and also consider it if they have valid reasoning behind their words. That's the joy I get out of these forums, to learn new perspectives and ideas on movies and comics that never had crossed my mind. It can be hard sometimes letting your fanboy cloud judgement, but once again, as long as someone has reasoning behind their stand, I listen and respect it. It just gets annoying when other's have this idea that their opinion is the almighty right one, and listen to no ones, which is a problem at times on the boards. That's when I check out lol.

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Old 07-14-2014, 10:49 AM   #4
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Default Re: Can An Opinion Be Wrong???

I think Confused Matthew is a good example of this.

I literally can't stand that guy as he so blatantly disregards obvious things about some of the films he is reviewing to further his hate filled tirades.

His 2001: A Space Odyssey review is the best example imo. If there is one film I totally 100% understand somebody hating, it is that film. Believe me I get it. I wouldn't have an issue with CM's review if it was just him saying the structure of the film isn't for him and he couldn't get into it. I can respect that. I can understand that.

But he didn't just do that did he? He is so thick-headed he refuses to acknowledge the years of analysis and discussion of the film simply because he was bored. He ASSERTS the film is saying nothing and is style over substance, despite the rich history of one of the most influential films ever made. The worst part is he narrows film narrative down into restricting shackles and basically says in so many words a film has to be conventionally structured and answer all of it's questions to be good. I don't know about you, but if you're going to review something as significant as 2001 I think you need to be responsible and acknowledge it's legacy if you giving a good or BAD review.

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Old 07-14-2014, 12:29 PM   #5
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Default Re: Can An Opinion Be Wrong???

Yea opinions can be wrong.

People just need to realise that not everything is subjective.

Apocalypse Now is a better made film than Sharknado. But if you enjoy watching Sharknado more... THAT'S TOTALLY COOL! But don't try and say it's a better made film. Opinions don't even enter the equation.

It's ok to enjoy something that is poorly made. It's ok to not enjoy something that is well made.

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Old 07-14-2014, 12:48 PM   #6
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Great post Gremln. I saw the title and and was prepared to say that no an opinion can't. E wrong as it's just a viewpoint. But your preference vs quality comparison is quite apt.

When people get hyped for a new movie I can understand the love and enthusiasm but when they say it is better than any number of classic long proven movies then it becomes un-objective and too enthusiastic.

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Old 07-14-2014, 01:33 PM   #7
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Default Re: Can An Opinion Be Wrong???

Anyone's opinion not lined with mine is wrong.


But seriously, I get what you are throwing down and have been saying this for awhile now. I posted this awhile back about film critics which kind of flows into this conversation:

Many casual moviegoers look down on film critics and brush them off. They don't care if a film gets terrible reviews or wonderful reviews. Now, I'm not saying all film critics are right, and I'm not saying to drop your personal opinion, but completely disregarding film critics blindly is a disservice and a tad ignorant.


Most of the really good critics have studied film much more than the average moviegoer. This is often why many 'film buffs' and filmmakers agree with critics on a lot of films. Does this make their opinions more valid? As unpopular as this sounds, I believe it does in a way. I'll trust a doctor to give me medical advice over Joe next door because my doctor has studied medicine his whole life. Its not as clear and cut as that because film is art(or its supposed to be anyway) and art is subjective. However, from a technical standpoint, those who have studied filmmaking know more about sound design, editing, camerawork ex, than the average moviegoer. And yes, those things to play a part in judging if a film is 'good' or 'bad'. For example, when a critic says this film is edited well, or this film has good cinematography, I take that in consideration when I choose what film to see. If critics have studied filmmaking, those 'tangible' aspects of filmmaking are a little bit more objective, though still not entirely.

However, the story and the overall entertainment of a film,which is what most average moviegoers go to see, is entirely subjective and their opinion has no more validity than anyone else. This sometimes, in my opinion, is what causes the rift between a lot of critics and casual moviegoers. Moviegoers care primarily for the entertainment factor, while the critics factor in the other 'tangible'(not the right word really, but just go with it) aspects that casual moviegoers simply don't care for. For instance, The Tree of Life was beautifully made. The cinematography and editing were wonderful. The acting was great. However, I wasn't extremely entertained by the story, so while I have some respect for it from a filmmaking standpoint, I wouldn't say I really 'liked' it. A critic however, with my same opinion, may give it a pretty good review because everything else, aside from the entertainment factor, was extremely well done. I too, gave it a good review because there is so much wonderful filmmaking techniques in it.

Thus brings me to Ebert. Ebert was the greatest critic of all time because he thought both like a critic and like a fan. He rated things based on the type of film it was. Its silly to think Anchorman 2 should have the same filmmaking craft as a David Lynch film. In Ebert's own words:

"When you ask a friend if Hellboy is any good, you're not asking if it's any good compared to Mystic River, you're asking if it's any good compared to The Punisher. And my answer would be, on a scale of one to four, if Superman is four, then Hellboy is three and The Punisher is two. In the same way, if American Beauty gets four stars, then The United States of Leland clocks in at about two."

Most casual moviegoers think like him. When I give The Dark Knight a 10/10, that doesn't mean that I think The Dark Knight is perfect and right up there with The Godfather. It means its The Godfather of its genre.

Me personally, I really enjoy critical reactions. That doesn't mean that I always agree, but I love reading a well written film review. It can praise a film I hate, or hate a film I love as long as its well written. Reading reviews can help you expand your mind on a film and re-think it entirely. I also personally think people take film critics too seriously. They aren't saying 'hey you have to think like me'. They simply get to see films early and they get paid to let people know what they think of them so you can decide if you want to spend the $10 on the ticket for it. Its just like asking a friend if they saw the most recent release and if its worth seeing. Like your friends, its all about following the right people. If you're an action junkie, you probably don't ask your friend's wife,who loves all chick flicks, if she liked a movie. You ask your friends who have the same tastes as you. Similarly, find a critic with similar tastes and you will begin to enjoy reviews. I didn't always agree with Ebert, but I loved reading his reviews and we often agreed on films, so when he liked something I was anticipating, my anticipation grew. When he didn't like something I was looking forward to, I lowered my expectations

Don't judge film critics. Find the right ones to follow and they can be your friends and help you save $10 on a crappy movie.

But yeah. Thats what I think about critics.

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Old 07-14-2014, 01:48 PM   #8
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Default Re: Can An Opinion Be Wrong???

The problem is that people get hung up over what others think of films. People for some reason cannot comprehend that they may love something like Fast and Furious over The Godfather. But they just do. And hey, it's not the end of the world. It's okay. They aren't philistines, they aren't less intelligent, they just find that one particular movie particularly more fulfilling than another. Sometimes it cannot be explained, but what matters is what clicks with you and what is most fulfilling. There are many films that I think are better than what others consider great and it's because it fulfills what I find find most fulfilling as a moviegoer and my subjective views on what I find fulfilling.

That's what makes art beautiful. It cannot be defined or explained or proven fact. If something was proven why factually a movie is better than the other then that one individual is robbed out of personal enjoyment and fulfillment because of another's opinion. It makes no goddamn sense.

In other words, I can't look up in a book and see a scientific or mathematical equation as to why Fast and Furious is better than The Godfather. The notion that I can't is what makes art art. No body can ever take that opinion away from you. Ever.

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Old 07-14-2014, 02:18 PM   #9
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That's the thing, people often confuse enjoyment of a movie with that movie being high quality. Many awful movies are fun to watch and many excellent movies are difficult to watch.

I'd consider The Green Mile a far better made movie than Willy Wonka, but I'd consider willy Wonka a much more enjoyable movie.

Of two that are often competed against each other, The Dark Knight and Avengers. I'd consider one to be a more fun watch with better visual effects and humour and the other to have a considerably better script, story & acting. That would make the latter the better made movie but the former more enjoyable

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Originally Posted by GremlinZilla89 View Post
One more example. Take say, the CGI from TASM2. Opinions that it "looks just a PS3" game were abound. Yet, the objective proof that the visuals in that film are much more realistic and detailed than game graphics is right in front of your face. You can think the CGI is below par or nothing new, but PS3 level bad? No, that simply is not the case. At all.

Again, I don't want this post to come off as snooty or elitist. I just genuinely think that some opinions can be wrong if they are absolutely ignorant of fact, or fail to take objective evidence into account.
Agreed. That complaint is such lazy hyperbole.

I think that complaint is less about the quality of the effects and more about the subject matter of the effects.

Saying the effects look too vibrant would be more apt as they were bright and fast. Saying they look like video games is foolish as video games don't look near as good.

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Old 07-14-2014, 03:16 PM   #10
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Default Re: Can An Opinion Be Wrong???

Well they can be uninformed or not perceptive. Lots of people have different wavelengths for noticing things. I can't tell you how often I'm sure I saw a different version of a movie than some other folks because they swear something was not in the film that was there plain as day to me. lets not eve get into things subjective like was the performance of an actor good or not.

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Old 07-14-2014, 10:44 PM   #11
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Default Re: Can An Opinion Be Wrong???

There's some sort of marriage/dispute between objective observation and individual subjectivity at the heart of all criticism, no matter where its coming from. Much of the internet thrives on that duality. The old adage that everyone has the right to an opinion I think should be modified to say that everyone has the right to an educated opinion, which is to say an opinion that is intelligent and well reasoned. To be able to amply convey why you like something rather than just saying that you like it. Opinions that are unreasonable and cannot recognize at least some objectivity are not of much value to anyone.

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Old 07-14-2014, 11:24 PM   #12
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Quote:
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To be able to amply convey why you like something rather than just saying that you like it. Opinions that are unreasonable and cannot recognize at least some objectivity are not of much value to anyone.


Very well put, agreed.

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Old 07-15-2014, 12:22 AM   #13
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Default Re: Can An Opinion Be Wrong???

An opinion can be uneducated, uninformed, and ignorant.

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Old 07-15-2014, 12:37 AM   #14
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Default Re: Can An Opinion Be Wrong???

this reminds me of Harlan Ellison's famous quote...

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Old 07-15-2014, 01:36 AM   #15
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Default Re: Can An Opinion Be Wrong???

Not mine but the rest of yours, yes.


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Old 07-15-2014, 03:36 AM   #16
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Yes, opinions can be wrong. Been saying this for a while.

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Old 07-15-2014, 08:52 AM   #17
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Nope opinions can't be wrong. Not unless you have solid facts to back this up.

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Old 07-15-2014, 11:11 PM   #18
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Quote:
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Yes, opinions can be wrong. Been saying this for a while.
That's why the title of the unauthorized biography I'm writing about you is titled Well, You're Wrong: The Majik1387 Story.

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Old 07-15-2014, 11:41 PM   #19
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Default Re: Can An Opinion Be Wrong???

No, an opinion cannot be wrong but it can be supported and challenged by others without being completely proven or disproven.

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Old 07-16-2014, 03:14 AM   #20
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That's why the title of the unauthorized biography I'm writing about you is titled Well, You're Wrong: The Majik1387 Story.

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Old 07-16-2014, 03:57 AM   #21
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Default Re: Can An Opinion Be Wrong???

Yes, apparently opinions can be wrong. Some days it seems that I have been told that my opinions, feelings and thoughts are frequently wrong on almost everything I have posted in the short time I've been here on the Hype.


Got to have thick skin, if you're going to put something out there for other people, no matter how well you try to think it through in advance. Still fun though as long as folks stay civil.

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Old 07-16-2014, 04:49 AM   #22
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Nope opinions can't be wrong. Not unless you have solid facts to back this up.
In my opinion Sharknado is a better made film than Children of Men.

Am i wrong or right?

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Old 07-16-2014, 12:18 PM   #23
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In my opinion Sharknado is a better made film than Children of Men.

Am i wrong or right?

Neither just insane, excuse me, reality challenged

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Old 07-16-2014, 12:28 PM   #24
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Default Re: Can An Opinion Be Wrong???

Other peoples' opinions, yes. My opinion, no.




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Old 10-12-2014, 12:09 AM   #25
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Default Re: Can An Opinion Be Wrong???

This is a very interesting subject.

I think opinions can be wrong, specially when those opinions have bad arguments, misinformation or simply the person giving it comes from a wrong starting point.

For example, I don't like The Godfather. I truly don't. I'm not an american, and maybe that's because I don't get, I don't enjoy that whole mafia world. It doesn't interest me. However, I know is a good film. It's influential, it's a very important piece in the history of cinema. I can't say is a bad film because I don't like it. And the fact is, there's a lot of people who don't know how important that movie is, and so they say 'is bad'. They come from a place of ignorance, and maybe is not a complete fault from the person giving the opinion, is just the way it is.

I don't know if I illustrated my point correctly, but there, I said it.

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