Shaping the art beyond the reviews, Film critics


Photo by Myke Simon on Unsplash

According to Google, criticism can be defined as the expression of disapproval of someone or something on the basis of perceived faults or mistake. However, for art, the definition of criticism is somewhat different. For a literary or artistic work, the analysis and judgment of the merits and faults is criticism. It is not only about judging, evaluating, or analysing the work, but also about exploring new aspects of the art form. It can’t be denied that film is an important part of our society. Films are used by politicians and leaders as a tool for propaganda, and many times they are used to share the complexities of society, myths, and ideology. So, it is a powerful medium. Films are important, and so are film critics. More subtly, art criticism is often tied to theory, and it is interpretative and aimed at establishing its significance in the history of art. Film criticism follows a similar approach.

Due to the democratisation of the internet and the emergence of new media, every user has become a film reviewer because of their free opinion. Which is totally fair, on the go what else are we looking for? A movie that will entertain, a movie that will be worth the money spent. And that should be expected from critics. But that is a very little part of the job; the remaining area is way bigger than that. A critic has a crucial job when it comes to film, rather than just reviewing the film and commenting whether it is worth watching or not.

Let us be clear about the fact first that criticism in film is not only showcasing the worst part of the film or given content but to analyse it and make it visible in the eye of the audience what effort it has taken. It is true that we go to the theatre to watch a film and entertain ourselves, and no one sees whether the framing was great, cinematography was decent, or the sound designing was awesome, but these all matter to us consciously or unconsciously. And there comes the job of the critic to pinpoint the things that we haven’t noticed or the effort that has been put into making that perfectly crafted scene. It is true that film critics need to point out the worst thing or the mistakes, on the upper hand it helps the filmmaker or makers to learn from the mistakes which no one has noticed. And there comes what we call ‘Constructive criticism’.

Some might say that film critics do nothing but hate the film, but a little glance at the history of the film will say otherwise. Film critics can inspire new forms of art; it helps to create a revolution in the standardized way of making films. It many a times challenged the status quo. It is pretty much evident from the French new wave that emerged in the late 1950s. This movement is characterized by the rejection of traditional filmmaking techniques and conventions and putting belief in experimentations. They adapted a new style of editing, cinematography, and narratives, and it was considered the most influential movement in the history of cinema. In this movement, film critics played a very crucial role; new wave critics studied the work of western classics and applied new Avant-Grande stylistic direction. And this era gave some awesome critics who turned into filmmakers, one of which was Jean-Luc Godard. Film critics can inspire new forms of art; it helps to create a revolution in the standardized way of making films.

Film critics also help to visualize the great art that we can’t have recognized. We might also see the great film director Alfred Hitchcock; whose film was just a mild art of entertainment at that time. But later on, the film critics analyse his work and demonstrated how his work was very scientific and innovative. Well, another good example is Martin Scorsese, who was just a mere independent American film director, but a critic like Roger Ebert took the charge and wrote about the great work and made it visible to the audience. And that way, we came to know about the great director. There are thousands of fishes in the pond, but between the identified and reachable fishes, some good fishes remain ignored, and critics help to identify that good fish from the shoal.

     Due to the internet, we have been exposed to many reviews and mediocre film critics. But being a critic is a very responsible job, and one needs to do it properly. By just only not quoting whether the movie is worth watching or not, it is just a mere part of the job. A filmmaker does a very hard job making the film experimenting and showcasing their own form, which might not be understandable by the audience. And that’s what film critics do. A film critic needs to talk about the cinematography, editing style, visual effects, set and costume design, and narratives. They need to introduce why the scene or frame or the effects is working or not working. Film critics are necessary if you love films, because as said by Aristotle, a critic can inspire great art.


Post a Comment

Previous Post Next Post


Show your love