EDITOR’S NOTE: So many movies, so little time … and a lot of suggestions from readers. Just like the Pioneer, Drew aims to provide readers with valuable reviews and information, not just covering the “popular” movies or issues. There are plenty of other sources for information about these over-publicized main stream movies – heck, half the time you’ve seen the best parts of the movies just from the previews. Watch for more from Drew’s Reviews.
By Andrew Jenck
As much as I love doing pieces for the Pioneer, despite delays, there have been instances where readers expect me to cover particular productions when I otherwise would have no interest. However, with the increased expenses and time in traveling, I feel that it is time to take Drew’s Reviews/Editorials away from the usual discussion found in other online critiques and approach different, overlooked subjects. Hence, I have compiled a Top 5 franchises, studios, and types of movies I will no longer cover for review purposes, as follows:
#5 SONY’S MARVEL UNIVERSE
The film franchise based on Spider-Man villains and supporting characters without Spider-Man is certainly an interesting endeavor. I have yet to see its only entry, Venom, though the negative press and memes haven’t given me any incentive to do so. Really though, my resentment to cover this franchise boils down to me likely not having anything really new to say. By the time I could put out a review, everyone will already have made every joke they could about each entry. I will eventually cover this in an editorial, but don’t expect any straight-up reviews from me on this matter.
#4 SKYDANCE ANIMATION
Skydance Media has yet to release a film under its newly established animation division, but I’m opposed to them for already making one blunder: hiring John Lasseter. Lasseter is a pioneer animator, directing the first two Toy Story movies and being the CCO of Disney and Pixar animation. He has also harassed his female workers. His crimes aren’t as bad as Harvey Weinstein and yes, he did take a leave of absence but it still feels too soon for him to work in the industry again.
#3 ILLUMINATION PRODUCTIONS
Basically everything in my review of The Grinch describes my frustrations with this company. It’s common for most major American studios to distribute half-baked trite with little regard to their young audience, but what gets under my skin is their approach: making films as cheaply as possible. There are fewer frames per second, the textures are nearly nonexistent, the backgrounds have little thought into them, the humor is juvenile memes at best, and they reuse assets (i.e. Agnus and Cindy Lou have the same character models). I’m not inherently against a company trying to make the most profits possible; that’s business, but they are the most successful animation company below Disney. I don’t wish to give money for something made with the bare minimum.
#2 THE LIVE ACTION DISNEY REMAKES
Every time Disney remakes one of their hand drawn classics, the general discussion surrounding the remake comes down to the same complaints: the CGI is uncanny, the characters aren’t allowed to be as expressive as their animated counterparts, and the films mostly exist to keep the animated movies in the public’s consciousness. Had I known that the criticisms were so derivative, I wouldn’t have written a review for Aladdin. I don’t see any point in talking about them, when there’s so little to reflect on. Granted, I have enjoyed some of the remakes, and Mulan does have potential. Even then, however, I doubt I will discuss anything more than how they work in relation to why others don’t work.
#1 THE MARVEL CINEMATIC UNIVERSE
Yes, I know I’m burning my meal ticket, but, I’m sorry, I don’t have any desire to cover the biggest franchise. No, not because I think they’re bad; they’re generally good. No, not because I think they’re ruining the film industry; that comes down more to Disney’s business practices. No, not even because Endgame was a satisfying ending, though that doesn’t help. I’m not covering them now because I feel there’s little for me to say. Everyone knows what they’re getting into with a Marvel film. Despite so much online film discussion surrounding them, whether it be predictions, trailer reactions, or how it will fit into the overarching story; when it comes time to review the movies, most essentially boil down to: “It was pretty good. The Marvel formula still works.” Writing the Avengers and Captain Marvel pieces felt like obligation because I was expected to cover them. After watching the same tone, aesthetic, and action choreography across over 20 films, I find myself having less of superhero fatigue and more of Marvel-formula-fatigue. I know many will miss my Marvel reviews, but do you really need me to say if you should go see these?
There is still a wide range of cinema I have yet to cover, so you can still expect reviews of hidden gems and coverage of most other major blockbusters. Stay tuned.