Saturday, April 25, 2009

Reviews and Relevancy

I come from place that does hard news and feature-y interviews. So the whole process of writing and printing reviews is foreign to me. But I have to ask... don't these things get edited?

Take the case of the New York Times' review of the new Beyonce/Idris Elba/Ali Larter movie Obsessed. I pulled up the review to see whether the Times found it entertaining or a complete waste of time. But I was smacked in the face with this instead:

"The movie’s most disturbing aspect, of which the filmmakers could not have been unaware, is the physical resemblance between Mr. Elba and Ms. Larter to O. J. and Nicole Brown Simpson. It lends “Obsessed” a distasteful taint of exploitation."






I was gobsmacked, to put it simply. How on earth does one conflate one of the most explosive cases of domestic violence in the 1990s with a 2009 movie about a family man that's trying to do right by his wife? (Oops. Sorry. Spoiler alert.) How do you compare a character whose overarching trait is his restraint reserve with someone who had no issue with being violent toward a woman? (For the record, the only violent scenes in the movie involve the two leading women.) And how do you POSSIBLY do that with a 14-year gap between the two?!

How does an editor see this and not bring up any questions?

I know, I know, it's just a movie review. But the comparison left me incredulous and actually, downright offended. There's no need to go into a tirade -- the baseless demonization of a black man who finds himself entwined with a white woman is obvious. And it would surprise me if no one else felt at least some glimmer of that too. To me, it's irresponsible to come up with some that couldn't possibly be anymore far-reaching -- and pass it off as a credible criticism.

I'm just sayin.

Posted by Veronica Marché at 3:17 PM | link

Read or Post a Comment

Yeah, that's got to be the weirdest movie review I've ever read.

Posted by Blogger Aaron Morrison @ 4:37 PM, April 25, 2009 #

I feel better. I thought I was the only one who picked that up. Holden has some serious issues.

And in terms of editing for print, you're spot on. That graph should have been cut by the editor, especially with it coming at the end...unless Holden has so much power that he can demand whatever he wants.

Posted by Anonymous Rashunda @ 8:48 AM, April 26, 2009 #
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