I watch roughly about 300+ movies a year, and while I do enjoy a lot of them, there are the occasional films that are unforgivably bad. A lot of 'formulated' films (Paul Blart: Mall Cop
, Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves
and The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
, as examples) tend to become stale when you've seen these formats repeated so many times - and unless you grew up with these films, you'll think they're bad. With that being said though, I did like Princes of Thieves a lot. I watched the new Jack Reacher film tonight and it was very predictable and full of cliches - it was just a downright terrible film. It had nothing remotely significant about it other than a few funny lines.
The horror genre is really bad for this, as there are very few horrors I would consider great and fresh. Jumpscares are such a stupid concept because the tension throughout builds and builds until -jumpscare- and then it's climaxed, then I find the film boring. Films like The Babadook
and The Witch
consistently built on tension with virtually no jumpscares at all, and they were both terrifying upon their first watch. Films like Occulus
did have jumpscares but I feel like they were executed well and weren't so frequent, and actually had a decent story to it. David Lynch's Mullholland Drive
However, after watching The Babadook several times over I found that it wasn't as creepy as the first watch (it's still a fantastic film layered with ambiguity and I would definitely recommend it!!). The only horror film I've watched that creeps me out relentlessly is Stanley Kubrick's The Shining
. This film has an atmosphere and tone that a lot of horror films miss out.
This might sound like a cliche, but I really do believe that Stanley Kubrick was the best film director who ever lived. The sheer brilliance of his works, including the time, effort and dedication put into them is astounding. If you are a serious film fan (or even just a casual viewer!) you NEED to view his filmography. Other directors such as Quentin Tarantino, Martin Scorsese, Andrei Tarkovsky, Francis Ford Coppola, Wes Anderson (to name a few) are all hailed as great directors for a reason. Look into their history, understand why their films are so brilliant, even the technical aspects - it'll let you appreciate the film more. When you are used to watching these beautifully produced films, you start to realise when a film is formulated and quite, well, shite.
CGI, as far as I'm concerned, it something filmmakers will regret. A lot of it does not age well, where as practical effects most of the time do. 2001: A Space Odyssey
has aged so well that it looks like it could have been filmed today. And films like Jason and the Argonauts
, which use stop-motion are real eye candy.
However, the definition of a good or bad film is entirely down to the viewer and their experiences. You'll notice that many polls will state that Citizen Kane
is "the greatest movie ever made.", and while I do appreciate it for its significance on cinema, I personally found it to be a very alright
film. I wasn't massive on the first Lord of The Rings movie either, and a lot of Hitchcock does nothing for me. Opinions also tend to change, I recently re-watched Raging Bull
and it's still good, but just not as good as I remember.
In my opinion, a bad movie is something that fails to capture you, bad acting, poor visuals, a total lack of originality and worst of all, cliches.
A good movie is one that you fall in love with, has an emotional impact with you, had stunning visuals and manages to grasps your attention right up until the last frame.