Sunday, January 27, 2008

Persepolis is not Sin City

The image “http://parsonsillustration.files.wordpress.com/2007/10/persepolis432.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.
I started reading "All Your Movie Are Belong to Us" in this month's Texas Monthly nodding in agreement. Fort Worth Star Telegram film critic Christopher Kelly asks:

How is it that fanboys—a pimply-faced, pasty-skinned set that in previous generations would have been kicked into the dirt by the bullies on the playground—emerged as the arbiters of twenty-first-century film culture?


His Texas-centric answer (always required in any Texas Monthly culture article) is that guys from Austin like Robert Rodriguez and Harry Knowles and the founders of the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema decided to get involved with filmmaking and criticism, but that their tastes never evolved from their teenage fanboy comic-book loves. He rails against the soulessness of all CGI, comic-booky movies like Sin City and 300.
The image “http://www.slashfilm.com/wp/wp-content/images/sincity.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

But then he also writes this:

It suddenly seemed as if just about every story—be it a political thriller like Pan’s Labyrinth (2006), a literary adaptation like Beowulf (2007), or even a coming-of-age memoir like Perseopolis [sic] (2007)—had to first be filtered through a graphic novelist’s sensibility before it could hit a movie screen.

Huh? Persepolis comes from a graphic novel, true, but what does "graphic novel sensibility" mean? In other words, how is Persepolis similar to Sin City or Hellboy or Spider-Man? It's simply not at all similar to those movies or their source materials. This is frankly a case of a lazy critic making a casually bigoted comment to unnecessarily bolster his case. To see how stupid what he said is, imagine it rewritten like this:

It suddenly seemed as if just about every story—be it a political thriller like The Bourne Ultimatum (2006), a literary adaptation like Atonement (2007), or even a historical drama like There Might Be Blood (2007)—had to first be filtered through a prose novelist’s sensibility before it could hit a movie screen.

The fact that these movies were adapted from novels wouldn't cause any thinking person to lump them together, because 1) the novels were all very, very different, and 2) the films made from the novels were very different as well. The casual lumping together of all graphic novels as having a similar "sensibility" (which then has a malign effect on cinema) is simply lazy and wrong.

Labels: ,

0 Comments:

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home