The Changing Tide of Movie Viewing

If you read my earlier post, you know why I support the actors/actresses that I do and why I do NOT read a critic‘s review of a film on them.  It is simple. It is not the critic who will decide the success or failure of an actor/actress but the viewing audience.  The viewing audience is the performer’s harshest critic, but there are times when after gaining some knowledge that they realize the performer is only as good as the director(s)  and/or the screenwriter(s).

In general, the critic truly speaks for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS).  While they are dedicated to the advancement of motion pictures and boasts a membership of over 6,000 members, they do not represent the viewing audience–who buys the majority of the tickets. In short, their usefulness is in question since times have now changed.

More and more, bloggers and independent websites are promoting the independent films and the actors and actresses willing to support those.  There are many reasons for this, but a lot of people in the “real world of the working class underdog” are really sick and tired of the fact that the movie industry in Hollywood is so entrenched in politics that it has lost the meaning of what it is to make entertaining films for the most part.

Lately the viewing audience has been bombarded with remakes, prequels, sequels and such–but very few pictures with new plots and original story lines.  The actor or actress may be playing a good role, but predicting what an audience expects has to be hell.  Well, the audiences are tired of the same old politically charged, status quo.  They are tired of remakes, chick flicks and the saturation of movies for the teen market.  It’s time for these marketers and CEO’s to grow up and it’s time for directors and producers to read ONE book…If nothing else they should read “9 Indispensable Ingredients” (that are ALWAYS present in every hit film but always absent in failures) by Tom Laughlin…Here’s a link to the site:

http://billyjack.com/

The topics covered in here hit the nail on the head as to what AUDIENCE expectations are…The critics do NOT represent the audience any longer and by ignoring that fact, that is where Hollywood is screwing up.  This is a fact that should be clear since they are  marketing and making so many crappy movies that flop.  For those of you who are screenwriters, it’s a godsend.

There was a time when an audience held the critic’s word almost as gospel.  That is now changing.  Audiences now want to decide for themselves rather than rely on some else to give a view as if speaking on their behalf when their reviews only truly garner the attention of the Academy now.  I’ve been told that even VOD and DVD sales aren’t exactly great but part of it has to do with the economy.

These marketers and CEO”s that have invaded the entertainment industry are part of the reason I left my band years ago…The music industry and it’s critics aren’t different–they just deal with another aspect of show business. Again, the assumption is that they can sway an audience to support or not to support and with the advent of modern technology, they cannot. Viewers can decide for themselves what they wish and it has given them the power to make or break any actor, musician, screenwriter and/or songwriter.  However a lot of viewers do realize the actor has to do as the script and director demand…That is why viewers tend to judge an actor/actress on one thing alone: BELIEVABILITY.  After that it is the story that is judged, and the actors and actresses on a film are NOT the ones to be held accountable for trashy script writing in this day and age.  The 50’s and 60’s are over. The blame has now shifted for the most part and the crap trickles up the ladder at the major studios now–not down.  They can’t threaten the audiences by saying “IF X does well we’ll do this with the classic version…” either and YES this did happen recently.

The public is not easily manipulated and fooled anymore.  It is time for the CEO’s to wake up and realize it. Many have and have moved to the indie market which will flourish in the next 10 years. I do believe that in my lifetime, if things keep going the way that they are, that Hollywood will one day be known as the place that USED to be the film capital of this country and the world.
I also want to point out that many of  the older actors and actresses tend to do a better job than the younger ones. They come from different schools of thought and approach their characters differently, it seems.  A good actor/actress allows that character to come to life through him/her–regardless of how the script itself was written.  If that actor/actress can evoke strong emotion of some sort as the character comes through them, then (in my opinion) they have done THEIR job correctly. That being said, I invite you to discuss your favorite actors and actresses here, your favorite movies and what you think of the trends in Hollywood now.  Here is the link:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/354427947959295/

There are rules but the main one is, don’t get upset and start getting out of control in there….Trust me.  It’s okay for everyone to have their favorites and others not to agree, but there isn’t any reason to fuss over it because different performers reach different people in different ways.

To Younger and New Writers: A Cruel Blow and How It Helped Shape My Own Writing…

I find it great that my sons now view me as tough, fair–and unwavering.  I had realistic expectations of them, but I always let them be the individuals that they are and they later thanked me for that.  I vowed never to try to mold my kids into an image that was me and not them.  I grew up in a strict home and individuality was frowned upon to a degree, but I do not think my parents realized that this is what was going on. As I got older, they realized that I thought differently and had different ideas of how the world works, and then they started to listen to me more.  As my writing took on its Frankenstein existence, they definitely began to respect me more after that.  I am sure that I was born at the perfect time on this planet because had I been born, let’s say, 20 years earlier, I probably would have been given a lobotomy for my thoughts alone after being subjected to many rulers and whippings by teachers in front of a classroom for my free-thinking attitude.  My free thinking, as said earlier, always got me in a jam…I am never one to conform to anyone’s ideals of what they think I should be.  No writer should ever get locked into a box from which they can never escape.

However,  my younger son’s  father wanted me to profit from it and I refused.  It led to many fights because he would sneak into my notebooks so I stopped writing until we were divorced.  The final nail for that taking place was when one of my sons and I heard the man tell my best friend that he never loved me from day one.  Cruel isn’t it?  My son felt that he couldn’t love his own children if he couldn’t love their mother and it led to a lot of emotional wreckage which shaped my other stuff.  Some of my notebooks were stolen before and I didn’t want it out there because I write primarily for my satisfaction.  What looks like notes on here at times may very well come directly from my notes, but the ideas behind them work.

I write what I see happening.  It’s almost like watching a movie and it works for me.  It is the one thing that I never allowed anyone to take over or wrestle from my mental grasp.  It became a wonderful way to escape into other worlds I created and a way to punish those who did me harm.  In short, in those worlds I create, I am God.   There is something empowering about having the power of life and death in a pen–but there are times when writing off a good character has it’s purpose as well, so no…I don’t simply use it to kill off bullies and negative boneheads.

Some of my characters are actually what I refer to as closet exhibitionists for the simple reason that they would love to just say “Damn the torpedoes! Screw this! I’ve had it!” and then just let the other characters that tick them off have it!  However they don’t because they fear the unknown–the result.  Some never go into professions they wanted and are held back while others follow their gut instinct and are well rewarded later for it–maybe not in the way they anticipated, but they are rewarded.

However there is a reality that some people don’t seem to be able to envision simply  because they are too close to the soul of the issue…The rainbow….That is right…The rainbow.  In reflecting on my life and how all the events in it shaped me–my parents divorce, the wives Dad had that I knew of, and my grandparent’s influence, I did realize that at the end of this place a rainbow is present…When we see that rainbow, that is when  we finally believe that there is a purpose in all things and forms as well as in life itself.  It is also the point in which we realize in this life that it is not what you take with you, but what you leave behind that truly matters because like the ripples in a pond, those waves keep travelling–only that becomes your legacy.  It travels forever and others can learn from it, but the genealogy begins within your own voice–and emanates from YOUR own pen.  Two people got me to writing again.  I think they know who they are. I’ve got a lot of catching up to do in the process.

I have grown to understand that I do not have to please everyone, and for you younger writer’s you simply need to grasp that you do not have to either.  Your writing comes from your soul…When you write faster than a dust devil in a hot sandstorm in the Mojave Desert that is stretching its arms out and  throwing cacti specimens around at everything in its path, this is the point at which your blood is boiling as you bring your characters, your plots and your backgrounds into a three-dimensional realm.  Your paper is your canvas for this chaos and that’s what you should use it for. Show the world YOUR picture as you bring your creatures to life and move them through their plots.  When you let your imagination run wild, a pen is now a wand and you are creating your own magic too…

That rainbow has many colors–but the only one visible is what others who read your work see, unless they have that gift of seeing between those lines and into the souls of your characters…If you have done a good enough job of creating those life forms from the nothingness of the universe, then you have created a rainbow of many colors for them…Sometimes it is better to see with the heart than with the eyes anyway–and they will see all those colors if you make these characters real, feeling beings..

Now for those of you with a normal upbringing and existence that want to write nice things with happy endings, disregard this post because you can’t allow that dust devil to come through…It can be an angel, a beloved pet, Bugs Bunny or whatever but unless you’ve had to deal with more drama than what TNT offers, it is hard to write from that perspective…Again, WRITE FROM your own perspective and nobody else’s. You’ll be less likely to get ulcers that way.  And you also might lead someone else to their own rainbow through your pen a lot quicker.