the chorister's c



...most movies coming out of Hollywood look too perfect to be intimate. They're so heavily processed they don't just seem slick, they seem laminated, and so does everyone and everything in them. This is just right for a futuristic special effects blowout like The Matrix, but it has a way of draining the life out of just about everything else, even light romantic comedy.

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Too many Hollywood movies look like the product of a bunch of control freaks with a stun gun in one hand, a cattle prod in the other, and a 90-piece orchestra booming away in the background.

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Of course much of the time, audiences want to be manipulated -- it's what people mean when they say they just want to be entertained. The way most Hollywood movies work, the relationship between director and audience bears a distinct resemblance to that of hooker and john. Audiences go to the movies hoping to be serviced -- amused or thrilled or scared -- in fairly specific, familiar ways. That's what they paid for. They aren't looking for revelation, they're looking to be stroked. They don't expect to be made uncomfortable or self-conscious or even seriously moved. In other words, they don't expect a real connection, one that's open-ended and unpredictable.

Karen Durbin, "The View from Inside the Dream," a celebration of the intimate movie, New York Times, 18 June 2000

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