Sunday, April 4, 2010

A Quick Note About Shutter Island's Reception.

I was going to include this in my review for Shutter Island, but I ended up going a little too far with it for it to make sense being in a review, so here it is separately:

Shutter Island has been dismissed by many as just a glorified B-movie with no ambition to be anything more than that, saying that Scorsese just phoned it in (Yes, that phrase was actually used), ironic criticism coming from people who probably loved last year's triumph in self-indulgent boredom, Inglourious Basterds, or every other Quentin Tarantino film (Tarantino himself has even written Scorsese off!). To these people I would say two things: first, What's wrong with glorified pulp, especially when it is done this well? As much as I disagree with the consensus about the annoyingly-misspelled Inglourious Basterds (I don't care that it's a reference to a movie you've never seen!), and Death Proof, for that matter, I would agree that Pulp Fiction is a masterpiece, but I don't understand why Scorsese gets criticized for doing in Shutter Island what Tarantino has made a career of: piggy-backing on old movies. The irony is that Scorsese does this, ahem, a lot more maturely than Tarantino; Scorsese uses his influences as inspiration to tell his story more effectively, as support for his narrative, rather than using them entirely to construct it (though maybe that's what QT meant when he called Scorsese "geriatric").

And the second thing I would say to these people is Watch the fucking movie again.

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