Why Do You Care if Critics Hate the Movies You Like?

Published 4 years ago by , Updated August 7th, 2012 at 9:39 pm,

critics header 2 Why Do You Care if Critics Hate the Movies You Like?

[With all the heated discussion over our Green Lantern review (and pretty much any other superhero movie these days), we thought it might be an opportune time to resurrect this article from last year – Ed.]

“Opinions are like armpits – everyone has them and some of them stink,” so the old adage goes. This phrase rings doubly true when it comes to movie critics and their reviews of films.

The word “critic” is derived from the word “critique” which is defined by Dictionary.com as “a criticism or critical comment on some subject.” Film critics in general simply critique a movie based on their personal feelings and experiences. Why then do people get totally upset when a review for a film goes in the complete opposite direction of their personal experiences?

In other words: Why do people care if critics hate the movies they like?

In my recent review for Dinner for Schmucks, I was literally raked across the coals (OK not literally) for giving the film a poor score that others felt was not justified. For example: “You have no idea what comedy is.” or “I pity you for lacking a sense of humor.” or “You have no soul and are a worthless coward who hides behind words to attack hard working people making a film.” Alright, I sort of embellished that last sentence and quoted it out of context but something similar was actually said to me.

These are all good people who have absolutely nothing invested in the film beside two hours of their time and a few dollars from their pocket; so why are they adamantly defending a movie that amounts to nothing more than a toss-away summer comedy?

critics freud Why Do You Care if Critics Hate the Movies You Like?

I think the answer is more or less buried beneath the complex layers of the human psyche. Everyone wants to feel like they’re a part of what is conceived to be the winning group or side. No one wants to be associated with a conceived bunch of losers (except maybe Zoe Saldana *bum-dum ching*), so every time someone attacks something we’ve aligned ourselves with, our first instinct is to defend it – whether it is a political view, a friend or family member, a beloved sports team or even something as contrived and ultimately meaningless as a film - if we love it and someone attacks it, then we WILL defend it!

It used to be that movie going audiences would live or die by the professional movie critic. At one point, the mere direction of a thumbs up or thumbs down from famed and influential movie critics Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert would be enough to make or break a film. Of course, back then no one had the ability to quickly spout off a remark on their blog page and voice a contrary opinion.

Now, thanks to Al Gore, we have this thing called *deep booming, echoing voice* The Internet!

The internet has given anyone who wishes to share their critiques with the world the ability to share their thoughts on a particular subject via a personal blog, a FaceBook status update, a short Twitter message or, if they are really lucky, a medium-to-high profile blog and/or news column.

It used to take days for word of mouth to spread regarding a film and now it take minutes or even seconds (depending on whether you use the AT&T cell network *zing*). Of course, every rose has its thorn (thanks Poison) and just like the Internet can be used to respond to a reviewer with enthusiastic agreement, it can also be used to put forth a scathing rebuttal.

critics angry mob pitchfork Why Do You Care if Critics Hate the Movies You Like?

Reviewing a film can often be a tough row to hoe and, if they are lucky, the reviewer can find their opinions falling in lockstep with the opinions of their peers; they can also find their review on the opposite of popular opinion, which opens their review (and subsequently the reviewer) up to criticism.

Of course, whether a film is good or bad is purely subjective and while one reviewer might enjoy a light-hearted romance comedy about a love triangle involving a bartender, an extreme mountain biker and a nun, another reviewer might be completely turned off by that concept and both reviews will ultimately reflect those feelings.

A few recent examples of this would be Roger Ebert’s half-star review of Kick-Ass, Cole Smithey’s C+ review of Toy Story 3 and pretty much anything Armond White reviews in general (the guy seriously liked Jonah Hex). See what I just did right there? I, along with most of the reviewing community, gave Jonah Hex a horrible review and I just dismissed White’s opinion because it didn’t mesh with mine. That’s not very nice of me to do is it?

Ebert’s scathing and often times sanctimonious review of Kick-Ass caused such an uproar in the fanboy circles that the Godfather of all movie bloggers, Harry Knowles of Ain’t It Cool News, wrote a response to Ebert calling him out for his controversial and sometimes hypocritical views on this and other films.

Cole Smithey and Armond White (who appears to have a form of movie review dyslexia) were the first people on Rotten Tomatoes in the entire world to give Toy Story 3 a rating that wasn’t fresh, which was ceremoniously frowned upon by critics and bloggers alike in almost an instantaneous fashion. Cinema Blend, /Film, Pop Eater and others all rallied around what they thought to be a critical injustice. In other words – they all defended what they liked against what they perceived as an attack.

critics ebert smithey white Why Do You Care if Critics Hate the Movies You Like?

Again, why is it even important that a film review, good or bad, agrees with our individual opinions? Ultimately a handful of overly-aggressive reviews does nothing to deter the general movie-going audience from attending a film. Kick-Ass was hailed by the fanboy community while bringing in an impressive world wide box office gross of $96 million, even though Ebert hated it; Toy Story 3 is a huge blockbuster success even though Smithey railed on it and Jonah Hex appropriately failed even though White adorned it with kudos.

So what does this all mean in the grand scheme of things? Nothing, really; the true purpose of a review is to give the reader a look at how they may or may not enjoy a film based on someone else’s experience who shares their viewpoints.

Bottom line: If a critic doesn’t share your opinion on a film, don’t take that opportunity to rip into them; just find yourself a critic you do agree with and in the end you’ll enjoy your movie experience a whole lot more.

Let us know in the comments how you feel about critics who generally don’t agree with your opinions on movies.

Follow us on Twitter @Walwus and @ScreenRant.

Get our free email alerts on the topics and author of this article:


1 2 3 6

Post a Comment

GravatarWant to change your avatar?
Go to Gravatar.com and upload your own (we'll wait)!

 Rules: No profanity or personal attacks.
 Use a valid email address or risk being banned from commenting.

If your comment doesn't show up immediately, it may have been flagged for moderation. Please try refreshing the page first, then drop us a note and we'll retrieve it. Keep in mind that we do not allow external links in the comments.

  1. i never EVER listen to Ebert, or, Egbert as one of my friends dubbed him years ago. infact i dont listen to any critics. i dont get why some people put crirtics in so high regard. just dont get it at all.

  2. Movie critics, people whose job it is review movies, are people I never listen to or take seriously. The only critic whose opinion matters a damn to me, is me.

    • exactly sam, sometimes i just wanna smack certain critics upside the head and yell “if you dont like it, and knowingly go into a movie not liking it, why the hell are you here for, get out” i choose what i see carefully, if it lookings entertaining enough i’ll go see it, if friends ask me about films, well, i dont go into a ten minute tirade about it faulting this or that. i simply say it sucked, or it was good. if they ask why it was good my reply is always the same said with a smile “go see for yourself man”

  3. This is a really well put together article and I’m glad it was posted. Opinions are just that..opinions.

  4. Yep. I agree. I use critic’s opinions as a “single” point of view and regardless of what they like or dislike, I usually judge for myself UNLESS a critic’s opinion jive with my perceived expectation of a predicted “bad movie”.

  5. There used to be this chick that wrote for The State (Columbia, SC) that I read religiously. It’s not that I liked her, in fact, she completely sucked and couldn’t review her way out of a wet paper box office, but when she wrote a glowing review, that movie tanked. And when she decimated a film, I loved it and it did well in theaters. So she was like the anti-critic for me. She never disappointed me, either. Not once. She was truly so awful, I could almost tell you exactly how a movie would do just by how she reviewed it.

    She ended up being taken off movie reviews and forced to do real reporting. Never read her bylines, tho. I couldn’t trust em.

    Oh, and Roger Ebert blows.

    • There was a reviewer who worked for a major daily where I lived. I had read enough of her reviews to know how she thought and what she liked. So when she slammed a movie, I knew I would like it.

      It’s always a case of, know your peeps.

  6. Paul I think that was a fantastic article.

    It seems stupid to me that people would get offended that you or any other person/critic don’t like a certain movie and give it a sub-par review according to that person’s standards. I may not agree with you or some other person on how much they liked a movie, but I’m not going to rip into them.

    • The backlash against critics, as of late, has been coming from a bunch of narcissistic hypocrites. They tell others to not take critics so seriously, but they themselves take them so seriously as to unleash all sorts of venom toward them and act as if they have undeniable control over moviegoers’ brains.

      And through all their illogic, they argue for rules and principles that they only apply to those who disagree with them. What they complain about can often be applied to them as well. And trying to enlighten most of these people is nearly impossible.

  7. It’s funny how people are behaving about this article:

    “I never listen to critics- they’re stupid!”
    “I agree with you 110%!”

    I, personally, find myself on a middle ground. I read reviews. I enjoy seeing what others think. When I disagree, I usually laugh. Sometimes, when I feel someone is just being obnoxious, I post a scathing response. This article, while accurate and generally true, bristled me slightly. I can definitely understand it (I review things to a smaller degree, myself- often with crude replies), but I don’t necessarily agree with the idea of people not posting their opinions in response. I think people just need to put more thought into what they say.

    • Wasn’t trying to bristle you :) And I never said posting opinions is bad. I think the opposite is true. I love it when people discuss a film and my opinion on it. I’m open minded enough to listen to a valid point presented thoughtfully and have been known to adjust my score accordingly.

      It’s when people come at me with an obnoxious attitude that I refuse to budge on my viewpoint.

  8. i dont think anyone here called critics stupid…….

    • anthony,

      You don’t see some of the comments I delete from the site. 8)


      • ahhhhh…gotcha, thanks for the clarification there vic :)

  9. i can’t stand a lot of critics, most of the ones i have access to in the newspapers are god aweful, luckily about 80% of the movies reviewed on this site i agree with and even if i don’t this site is one of the only places i’ve come across that does it’s best to balance things out by pointing out both what’s wrong and right with the film (the guys in my newspapers seem to confuse their opinion with fact because they MUST be listened to since they’re important enough to have their own two page spread).
    i always wanted to be a professional film critic and hopefully if i’m given that chance i’ll be able to balance out the aspects of a film and keep reminding the readers that the article is purely opinion and nothing else

  10. It doesn’t bother me when a critic and I disagree, with one exception. I cannot stand a critic who gives a movie a negative review using “hype” or “overrated” as the basis of their argument. I have no problem with a critic who dislikes Anchorman or any other comedy because they didn’t find it funny. That’s okay. But when a critic, for example, says “The Dark Knight didn’t live up to the hype, 1 star” it says absolutely nothing about the film itself.

    Is a movie good, or is it bad? Why or why not? What aspects of the film worked, what didn’t? Would you recommend it to someone else? These are questions that a film critic should be answering, not “is it overrated?” or “does it live up to the hype?”

    • most of the critcs out there use those terms, its all they have

  11. I think there’s also another factor: validation. If you like a movie (or not), and someone whose opinion is respected enough that others seek him out to read what he thinks (the reviewer) shares your like (or dislike), you feel validated. If that respected person does not, you might feel slightened, diminished by that disagreement. Because the opinion of that reviewer matters to you — why else would you seek out what they have to say about the movie/book/TV show? In such a case, you might become extra aggressive and defensive, because you feel you need to defend your own opinion. Which, let’s face it, doesn’t matter to anyone except you, or else you would be the influential reviewer.

    • Good point. I think that DOES have a lot to do with a major outcry sometimes.

  12. Regardless of whether I agree with him or not about most things, I still do like to read Ebert. Sometimes he does piss me off, especially when he is reviewing a film based on a game or comic and doesnt bother to do any research into the subject matter. Still though, he does have a witty way of writing and he does his best to review movies from a thoughtful place. I don’t let critics make or break a movie for me, given how often i disagree with them, but at the same time if I find myself with a free couple of hours, some money to burn, and no idea what to see, I might use critics ratings as a guideline on where to spend the aforementioned cash.

    I think the only downside is that most critics these days are a decade or two outside the target 18-49 male demographic that many movies these days are meant to appeal to, and as such are set in a mindframe that movies should be one way and deviation from that in a direction like Kick-Ass is potentailly damaging to the medium. Is kick-ass a great piece of cinema? No, but it is a faithful and creative adaptation of a really interesting graphic novel by a guy some people like and some people don’t. As Paul Young states however, just see what you like and dont give a flying F#$K what anyone thinks of it.

  13. I give a damn what critics say, each one of us has a different opinion, anyway Screen Rant make the best reviews and critics I have ever seen.

  14. I think there is also another side to peoples’ reactions to critics:

    if you like something, and someone who is a “professional” in that field says it wasn’t good (most critics won’t say “I didn’t like it”… they will say “it’s crap”. the wording is actually fundamentally important) they are, in effect, speaking about you as well as the thing you like.

    it’s a normal reaction.

    I like “film maker X”.
    Others don’t.
    The scathing things that are said about him, if I let them, could reflect on my own taste in movies, or even on someone’s perception of my understanding of cinema and its fundamentals and principles.
    In other words, by saying that something that “Film maker X” has created, something which I liked, is “bad” the critic is saying that in effect I don’t know what I am talking about when I contradict him by saying it is “good”.

    I have to say that I am often guilty of the opposite behavior when people talk about music. I read/hear far too many people refer to various pieces of music as “masterpieces”. I’m a professional in the field, and I often find myself needing to bite my own tongue to not respond, especially when all I can see are the flaws in whatever piece of music they are praising.

    A film critic is SUPPOSED to be someone with a solid background in cinema, however. I presume we’re not talking about bloggers who review films and post on their own websites? When I read a review from someone like “Joe the movie dude” on the website “romcoms_are_for_pussies.com” I don’t quite have the same reaction to a dissenting review as I might from reading, oh, say, Roger Ebert’s review of a film.

    I think most people forget that they are not “critics”.
    They can share their own likes and dislikes.
    But most of the time, they just don’t have the background to do anything more than express that purely personal reaction to something. They don’t have the analytical baggage required to make anything more than a purely subjective like/dislike statement. Yet they think that their “opinion” should carry as much weight as that of someone who is supposed to be a professional in the field.

    There is a difference between “I liked/hated this” and “this is good/bad”. The two are not mutually exclusive, but they are certainly not synonymous. Most people tend to forget that, and confuse their subjective bias with qualitative judgment.

    • >>They don’t have the analytical baggage required to make anything more than a purely subjective like/dislike statement. Yet they think that their “opinion” should carry as much weight as that of someone who is supposed to be a professional in the field.

      Oh please. It’s reviewing a MOVIE not some continental philosopher. I post on IMDb and there are some reviews by posters, non paid critics, who write better reviews than some of the “respected” professional critics today. Why should a “critics” opinion be carried more? Because that critic as the analytical baggage required? Good grief no.

  15. Occasionaly if I’m unsure about a movie, like the trailers seem cheesy or the actors seem like a bad fit, I like to seek a second opinion.

    Since most of my friends and family are more of the Michael Bay crowd(they go for explosions not that their is anything wrong with that, I like explosions too. I just prefer them to have a purpose and not be over used.) this leads me to seek critics.

    For the most part though, I ignore them because a lot times I don’t really understand their criticisms, which is why I just look at internet reviewers like the Nostalgia Critic or Spoonyone because they are less about making themselves feel high and mighty and more about just being funny. Which is why it’s even dumber for people to attack them. They’re just trying to entertain people, you don’t have to take them seriously.

    A digressed a little at the end, sorry but that really annoys me.

  16. You are a good writer man that article was very well written. On my 2 cents I usally dont take ‘critics opinons 2 seriously bc people are so differnt that they are never gonna like the same things.Allthough i think there is 2 critics out there who have no taste in movies at all “The at the movies guys” I have watched every episode of that show for years and I swear the recent guys on there only like indie films or foreign films. It does seem though that the movies being made these days are far more for the younger generation 16-32 Id say. and most of the critics out there are in there 40-75 range id say, they used to judge only a certian kind of movies for years back when they started and movies today have got to be very differnt from the ones they are used to. Dont laugh at me but I think Ben Lions is the best critic out there right now have agreed with 98% of his choices.

  17. Interesting, I think the Opposite is also true, if you speak out calling yourself a movie Critic, why should you be bothered that your Opinion on a movie isn’t taken seriously or raises some animosity among others, such is the risk one takes when speaking out. Is it seeking public Validation that your opinion is somehow more relevant than the opinion of someone else, is it an embarrassment on being called out or an unwillingness to back up your opinion with more than “I thought it was awesome”? Is it possible that your opinion of a movie can be negatively influenced by a dislike of an actor and while the Actor themselves may not have been that great, the movie overall was still pretty good? Could it be someone’s particular writing style, that while overall a particular movie WAS bad, the way that it was stated it came off as being pompous and arrogant instead of informative and spelling out(without giving away “spoilers”) what exactly it was that made the movie “bad”? I personally have friends that simply tend to rub others the wrong way, there’s nothing in particular that one can point to and say that’s what makes people not like them, but such things do happen and they can also come out in writing. Is it possible that if you LOVE a movie, but a hundred others think it really stinks that they may actually be right?
    Simply something to consider.

    • Are speaking directly to me or talking about Critics in general? Rarely if ever do movie critics actually take the time to respond to their detractors. They feel as if they are somehow superior to their readers anyway and to respond would be beneath them.

      If you are referring to my writing of this article – I couldn’t care less what someone thinks of my opinion on a film. I simply found it interesting that so many people would aggressively defend a film in such a manner. You’ll notice that I didn’t change my score nor my opinion on the film.

  18. I agree with this opinion 100%, and its too bad that people don’t take this idea into consideration more often. I disagree with Smithey, White, and Ebert on the movies mentioned above. I now take those opinions into consideration when I read those critics’ reviews. (Actually, I’m done with White–he’s a ridiculous film critic and a decent writer who I believe exists only to start trouble now.) Anyway, critical consensus is a dangerous thing. Why people take the percentages on RottenTomatoes personally is beyond me. Find a critic whose opinions and writing you enjoy and engage them in the comments section (or their online community, at least). If there’s one thing I enjoy more than anything else, it’s good, intelligent discussion about a film. If a critic’s review is poorly written and amounts to nothing more than “This movie sucks,” that’s a failure. But if they give a good amount of reasoning behind their view, then its worth thinking about, whether you agree with it or not.

  19. For me, a review is generally a way to make sure I’m not wasting my time and money. I use Rotten Tomatoes a lot in this regard. I do know that I don’t always agree with the public (for example, I really didn’t like Inception.) Ten bucks wasted on a film is something I could have used later on something else, or heck, maybe even a different movie.

    If I’m still interested in seeing a movie that gets low reviews, I wait until the movie is released on dvd, and then pop over to the local Red Box. That way, I’m not out of much money.

    I have a much harder time with game reviews, but that’s a different story for a different site. :p

  20. My particular “angle” when reviewing movies here on the site from our “About” page http://screenrant.com/about/ :

    “Movie reviews are written from the point of view of ‘was it a fun/exciting/scary/compelling movie’ instead of from some high-brow, esoteric level that only other movie critics will relate to. On the other hand a movie has to have more than just big stars and fantastic special effects to be considered great by the folks at Screen Rant.”

    I try to balance the overall “quality” of a film with its genre and what it is trying to accomplish for the audience. Makes it difficult sometimes and it also leads to disagreements from readers from time to time. One thing I’ve been on the fence about here for a long time is getting rid of the star rating system and just letting the text of the reviews stand on their own. But people really like seeing a “score” for a film, and besides that, it certainly seems to stimulate conversation.


    • I have to say, Vic, the reason I enjoy the star system as a way to gauge seeing a movie (usually based on your site, I tend to agree with your reviewers around 80 to 90% of the time) is that it allows me to decide without risking spoilers. Most of the time there are adequate spoiler warnings in the articles, but every once in a while it is difficult to discuss something about the film in the review without at least minor spoilers. Having the stars gives me a general idea while letting me wait until after I’ve seen the movie to read the review proper.

  21. If you have a movie give you two hours of enjoyment sometimes you would like other people to share that experience. If a critic pans a movie that gave you that pleasure, you want to let people know the other side so they can experience the same joy you felt. Kick Ass was like that for me. I thought it was a great movie with several great moments, the warehouse scene that ended with a touching moment between hit girl and big daddy, the end scenes where the bad guys really get what they deserve. I have to say the music and the visuals from the lobby to the kitchen gave me goosebumps. That may be silly but it did. I liked sharing that with other people. Roger Ebert panned the movie, and he did it in an amazing hypocritical way. He has given movies with outright sexual violence against girls and women 4 stars and higher( Hound Dog, The girl with the Dragon Tatoo). Show him a movie where the girl is not a victim, but takes a stand against people who are really evil and he is offended. John Nolte, at Bighollywood.com wrote a great review of Kick Ass where he took apart Ebert’s review exactly on these grounds. That is why I defend my movies on various forums.

  22. Well i dont really care,i mean if a movie i really wanna see has a bad review IDGAF,i see it. Like with Shrek it got mixed reviews but u know i like shrek so i saw it and i loved it. So the only times those reviews aggect wat im going to see is wen im not sure sure its gonna be good. Of it has good reviews i see it. Bad i dont. Simple as that,i love reading reviews. Oh and i saw toy story 3 and i hated White and the others for giving it a bad review wen everyone else gives it a good one……IDGAF though…..my opinion is wat truly matters to me^^

  23. To me this reads like

    “Only I am allowed to have an opinion of a film and express it. Get your own website loser.”

    I’m sorry most of us are not fortunate enough for Vic to bring us in or to buy our own domain. I thought when I review had a comment section that meant I could comment on the review. It seems that’s only the case if we agree with you.

    While I disagreed with your opinion I defended you on your reviews and asked people to stop attacking buy this article seems almost like a pathetic cry for attention and a cry for a ban on opposing opinions. I’m sorry while that may not be the case that’s how comes off.

    If I don’t agree with a review I’ll continue to express my opinion. Just as I’m sure you will despite that it doesn’t agree with your article. I’m fairly certain I’ve seen you express a disagreement with a review before.

    • Daniel F,

      Wow, dude. How the heck did you read that into this article? It was basically asking a question because people get so fired up and oftentimes ANGRY at reviewers. And FYI Paul is very aware that you defended him in that review thread despite the fact you disagreed with him.

      And you still didn’t exactly answer the question.


    • To me this reads like:

      “I didn’t read past the the picture of Sigmund Freud and am so full of myself and my own opinions that I formed what I think to be a proper synopsis of this article off the opening paragraphs alone. That and I’m like to take an argumentative tone with just about every post I comment on.”

      Seriously dude, I was just telling the other writers for SR today how much you seem to like to stir things up by acting as if you have or know the answer for everything topic we post on. But when push comes to shove you almost always back up the SR staff when it comes to voicing our opinions. I used our recent conversation on Dinner for Schmucks as an example. While we disagreed on the film we supported each other’s right to express those opinions.

      I’m not going to explain my position in this article to you because I’ve had enough interaction with you to know you are a very smart educated guy and for that reason I’m sure you can figure it out.

  24. I feel like a critic liking or disliking a movie in some weird way validates or condemns the way I feel about a movie, whether I’ve seen it or not. To see a movie I’m legitimately interested in get a bad review makes me (and I’m sure makes other people) feel like our initial interest in the movie was foolish and unfounded. A bad review of a movie I’ve already seen and enjoyed makes me really have doubts about its initial quality, which casts a gloom over the good feeling I got from watching the movie in the first place. I try not to get up in arms about these things any more, but there was a time when someone dissing a movie I’d liked, and had chosen to spend my time and money watching, got me really angry. These days it’s a sort of minor ire.

    In other cases, I get irritated when someone’s review of a movie seems like it’s bad simply for the sake of being contrary (as with a review I read in the Village Voice recently about “Inception,” or Armond White, who seems to be rapidly losing his credibility because of this quality). In my reviews, I try to approach the film from as basic a standpoint as I can. First: did I like the movie, yes or no? Then: Why/why not? A good critic should make a case, and be able to solidly defend it, point by point, especially if they know their opinion will be unpopular. Anyone who writes an unfavorable AND weak review of a movie should be prepared to weather a serious storm.

  25. Over the years, I have read film critics and compared their opinions of films with my own. Now I refer to those critics whom I tend to agree with when I am unsure of whether a movie is worth my while. However, if I want to see some movie, I don’t care what the reviews say: I’m going! But the critical attacks are far worse from movie nerds. We are hyper-opinionated and I’ll be the first to admit, I am a dick about movies. I sometimes believe my opinion is gospel.

    • The issue is a complex one, it’s easy to see just by reading all the responses. I use to rely on critics because of limited time and finance when I was working, and very often I was relied on to choose what movie we would see and so the choice somewhat reflected on my taste as well. The thing is, like many here have observed, some critics opinions diverge from our own perceptions, likes, and dislikes, as well as each others. That’s why I came to the conclusion that if you want to rely on a movie critic you must find one that you can agree with a good percentage of the time!

  26. Vic Paul answered the question him self. People like feeling like they were right or as he said they like being on the wining side. No one likes being disagreed with and we all feel the need to defend our opinion when it’s called out.

    Also the fact that while a review has less impact than it did at one time it still has an impact. A bad review does still prevent some people from watching a film. If you really love a film but see a bad review it sends a rush through a sort of fear that a film you love might not do well be cause some unknowledgeable reviewer gave it negative remarks and scared some away.

    I’m not calling anyone out with that I’m saying that’s what you think. I’ve seen guys agree with a reviewer 90% of the time but the moment they disagree the reviewer is suddenly an unknowledable idiot. It’s not as personal as most people take it. It’s a sort of gut reaction an instinct to defend something.

    Also Vic my comment were because of two things one being that he wrote the article and it seems it was because he was some upset about the comments and I urge you to read the end paragraph. The entire article he poses the question but the end he urges us badically to just our mouths and read his reviews. He even goes as far as to say if you disagree with him find someone else to read.

    • Daniel F,

      What, this?

      “If a critic doesn’t share your opinion on a film, don’t take that opportunity to rip into them; just find yourself a critic you do agree with and in the end you’ll enjoy your movie experience a whole lot more.”

      You take that as calling a reader’s viewpoint irrelevant and calling readers LOSERS? Telling readers not to “rip into” a reviewer and suggesting that they find a reviewer they generally agree with?

      There’s a big difference between telling someone not to rip into someone else and telling them to shut up. Hell, that’s one of the main things I tell commenters here all the time when addressing each other: disagree, but do it in a civil manner.

      Come on now, bud. Seriously.


    • That is exactly how I feel. If you think a movie has merit and a reviewer trashes it, some people who do not look beyond the popular critics may not see that movie. That may keep them from a good experience and it may effect the movies bottom line and stop future sequels.

    • I agree with Daniel. Just as everyone’s entitled to their own opinions, the same goes for anyone’s counter-opinion (as long as it adheres to site-posting rules). While I may not be at expert at psychological layers and such, this article does seem to suggest that defending anything to the contrary boils down to a psychological desire to be with the “winners” and not the “losers.” Though this part does seem to be a cheap shot at anyone with opposing viewpoints; the same can actually be said for both viewpoints.

      Thus, if you have an opinion on someone else’s opinion, feel free to share it. I don’t think there’s solid evidence to show that disagreeing with a critic will shape or ruin your overall movie experience. And Paul Young, though I disagreed with this particular article, I found your writing style almost full of marketable and tactful quality. I bet you’d be hell to argue politics with.

      On a last note, I tend to find accumulated user movie reviews helpful more often (like 75% of the time) than and single or accumulated critics’ reviews.

  27. If Ebert reviewed something in detail great, good, bad, I would see it and see if those things mattered or were noticeable. In a short time from a newspaper breakdown each week of movies I eventually found a reviewer that I trusted. This, as time went on, expanded into different critics for some genre’s while others, I could rely on a critic with a certain level of confidence no matter what they reviewed. That way I could say, find the reviewer that I trusted to see a comedy as I saw them, and compare that to my very good general purpose reviewer. When they both agreed in equal amounts and ways, then you were in for a worthwhile movie experience. If they were divided I focused on the reviewer that had the most negative criticism and looked closely to determine if their detractions were the same things I hated watching. Then I could decide whether to pass or see the movie anyway. I realize that’s not the only way to do it, and most would probably judge it as an overly complicated way to make a decision. But I found it worked for me and mine and rarely heard complaints.

    Unfortunately I had nothing to do with selecting “Three Amigo’s” or “Ishtar” those were movies insisted upon me by others, desperate for a laugh that found out the hard way, none were to be had…

  28. I’m not say that’s is exactly what he’s saying but it comes off that way to me. I’ll admit my initial reaction was harsher than it should of been but this article does come off like he’s asking us to keep quite if we don’t agree. I see nothing wrong with disagreeing with a critic and explaining why you think he is wrong. I think the article focuses to much on him not wanting people to disagree with him. As long as it doesn’t turn in to an essay of personal insults we should disagree as much as we want. It’s out very nature to defend our opinions and while I could be wrong the article seems as if he’s asking us to keep silent If we don’t agree. I should of said it more polite but I’m grumpy and intially I was very angry because to me it cones off as trying to silence disenting views and that lights a fire under me.

    • Daniel F,

      I don’t see that article that way – I see it as asking why it matters to people so MUCH if a movie reviewer doesn’t like a movie they think is great, and speculating on possible reasons.

      Again, there have been many instances where people go ballistic on reviewers, calling them idiots, saying they should be fired (I personally love when someone says that to me), etc. It seems like some people take it personally when someone disagrees with their opinion of a film – hell, we’ve seen it PLENTY on this site in regards to The Dark Knight. :)


  29. I enjoy reading or partially reading the reviews on Screen Rant. But if I really want to see a film a review won’t stop me.

    In fact I avoid reviews and trailers on films that I really anticipate.

    One advantage to the rating system here at SR is that you can check the star rating at the top of the article and immediately without reading the review get a sense of how good the film is.
    Harry Knowles and Rotten Tomatoes aren’t even a part of my world. I’ve never read his reviews and I don’t buy into a site called Rotten Tomatoes. If that’s the best they can do naming a film review site then I want nothing to do with those dweebs.

    • 790, your first sentence i’ve in high regards to the way i approach films.

1 2 3 6