movies matter | criticism by maryann johanson
Sat Aug 29 2015, 04:47pm | 8 comments
Agreed, but… do people who run fanboy sites consider themselves journalists? I don’t think they’re running around claiming they’re doing the same thing as Woodward and Bernstein.
Well, at least some of them claim they should have “press credentials” (which don’t exist) and thus be admitted to advance screenings. And of course that’s easier for FrothingPositiveReviews.com than for a real reviewer, because it is public relations.
And plenty of them *are* considered press by the industry. They are courted by the studios because they know they will get uncritical coverage of any little tidbit they blast out in a press release.
They don’t claim that. But yes, they do consider themselves journalists and they do get treated as such by the studios.
I think we’re agreeing furiously.
I can’t see how one would want to be a remorselessly positive cheerleader for everything one was told to promote, but then I’m not an extrovert who finds being in a happy crowd enjoyable in itself; I suspect the feelings are similar.
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Well, they might happily publicize all the promotional bits from the studios prior to a film’s release, but I don’t think that guarantees good reviews from these sites. Ain’t It Cool’s mixed-to-negative reviews of We Are Your Friends, No Escape, Hitman: Agent 47, Fantastic Four, The Vatican Tapes, Self/Less, Terminator: Genisys, Max, and Pitch Perfect 2 (to go through some recent posts in their archives) don’t particularly seem like remorselessly positive cheerleading to me. (Incidentally, it’s interesting to see Ain’t It Cool’s reviewer for No Escape making a lot of the same points MAJ does in her review.)
Because then they get swag from the studios, they get invited on junkets and set visits, and those sites get more traffic, which means more ad revenue.
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