Movie theatre marquee advertising The Hateful Eight

Mass Infantilization Plaguing Movies #TBT

A. O. Scott, the venerable, initialed movie reviewer and societal critic for the New York Times, wrote an article a few years ago on a disease he saw plaguing movies entitled “Open Wide: Spoon-fed Cinema.” Scott’s diagnosis: “Forty is the new dead” for cinema as mass infantilization engenders profit at the box office, while stealing profit from culture and the soul. I have thought a lot about this article off and on since its 2009 printing. Initially, I agreed Scott’s diagnosis was a chronic condition of Hollywood. Now I believe it to be a seasonal affliction. […]

Banner stating "Rogue One: A Star Wars Story"

Rogue One: The Light and The Dark

The quality of the Star Wars movies has reflected the struggle of the Light Side and the Dark Side. The Original Trilogy and Episode VII dwell on the Light Side as quality films with minor quibbles. The prequel Episodes I-III inhabit the Dark Side as flawed films with minor moments of logic and excitement.

The family saw Rogue One: A Star Wars Story on Christmas Day and enjoyed ourselves. At dinner we had a discussion where we each stated one “Light Side” thing we loved about the movie and one “Dark Side” thing we wish the movie had done differently. Quickly it became apparent that while the Light Side things caused great smiles they were fleeting. What we discussed most were the Dark Side flaws in the movie. Mutually agreed upon flaws that fed on each other.

Rogue One is a Star Wars movie. But judging the quality of Rogue One necessitates embracing both the Light and Dark sides. Rogue One is an enjoyable, flawed film.

***SPOILERS WARNING*** […]