Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Kill Slumdog Millionaire

Tarantino is one odd duck, and I often find that watching him, or listening to him, or looking at him somewhat diminishes the value of his movies (though on the teensiest level, and only momentarily). For example, take his recent interview with Conan O'Brien [Part 1, Part 2]. Even Conan, a skilled interviewer (and especially skilled at making himself out to be the buffoon) can't rescue Tarantino from his awkwardness. We're not talking Jaoquin Pheonix awkward, but awkward.

But then there are times when Tarantino isn't promoting himself, like in the video below, when he once again reveals himself as a total badass. He's well spoken, and incredibly insightful. Unlike the Conan interview, this introduction for Danny Boyle's Sunshine is scripted, but there's no reason to doubt Tarantino's authorship, and you can see how incredibly intelligent he really is, that his movies really are a reflection of his substance, and not that he's just getting lucky every time.

And now a word on the clip itself. This is from a series of Tarantino's favorite movies since he directed Reservoir Dogs. Here, he introduces and discusses Sunshine, directed by Danny Boyle, the same Danny Boyle that directed Slumdog Millionaire.

Now is Slumdog Millionaire a terrible movie? Not really. In fact, I believe Boyle deserved his Best Director Oscar very much. The other 10 or so that movie won, it probably didn't deserve. [Full Disclosure: I am employed by The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences {Fuller Disclosure: There was no reason for me to disclose that, I just think it's cool.}]

This is the problem with Slumdog Millionaire (and the same goes for Juno/Little Miss Sunshine): not that it is a feel-good movie, but that people think that because it made them feel good, it's a good movie, which is not the case. Furthermore (and this is going to sound like the most dickish statement in the history of film criticism), and this goes moreso for Juno and Little Miss Sunshine, it's a movie that makes people with poor/fair taste in movies feel like they have good taste in movies. It's kind of like being able to afford a dress shirt from Abercrombie and Fitch and thinking that means you have good fashion sense. (It doesn't.)

Tarantino instead highlights some classic Boyle (everything before Slumdog) and gives my thoughts exactly on Sunshine. In truth, it's probably not as good a movie as Slumdog Millionaire, but anyone who liked that should definitely check this one out. You'll probably hate it, but your opinions on Slumdog will be worth a lot more.

Found via Slashfilm.com

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