Archæology

The assorted finds of Artefact Publishing

A new appreciation of bad films

My friend Stuart’s review of X2 specifies that he is in a minority of one (among his friends) in not liking the film. Strange, given that I saw it with him, and we talked afterwards about how neither of us thought it was good. Perhaps he can be forgiven for forgetting this because I have discovered one of the ways I have changed since spending that time in Thailand having snakes fall on my head: I am able to watch bad films without rancour, and allow myself to be entertained by their (few) merits.

Another friend has delighted in this discovery that I have become “indiscriminate”, able to sit happily through Maid in Manhatten. Not that I seek out these movies; I just get taken to them and end up being more entertained/less offended than those I am with. The Good girl tested my newfound calm to the utmost, however — an entirely squalid story (I knew I was in for trouble when The Catcher in the rye made an appearance) that conflicted sharply with the uplifting views on art expressed in Fire in the mind, the biography of Joseph Campbell that I was then reading.

X2 was therefore easier to take because it was rather lacking in merit than possessing repellant qualities. Even the almost constant violence was tolerable — I don’t enjoy those parts in the Iliad, so why in a film? I even consider it a virtue that the film’s fight scenes didn’t intersperse lion metaphors amidst the action; there’s only so much of that sort of thing those of us not writing theses on the topic can handle.

Posted by jamie on May 14, 2003 14:15+12:00

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