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Steven Spielberg is Overrated


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Initial post: Jan 14, 2013 12:05:13 PM PST
Oskar2525 says:
Most overrated director of all time.
He is absolutely not an auteur. His films are boring, point and shoot camera work. He has done nothing to further the art other than paste his name on everything he possibly can.
He is shameless and an egotist.

Posted on Jan 14, 2013 12:17:53 PM PST
RichieV says:
I believe the answer is somewhere in between. Is he the greatest Director ever? I don't believe so, but he has made so many great movies that I have enjoyed I wouldn't call him bad either.

Jaws: Many consider one of top films of all time
E.T.: One of the most beloved children's movies of all time (although on this one I don't quite get the movie)
Raiders of the Lost Ark: One of the best action films of all time
Saving private Ryan: One of the best War Films of all time (People are still saying this film got robbed at the Oscars)

Honorable mention: Lincoln, Minority Report, Schindler's list, Close encounters of the third kind, Jurassic Park)

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 12:36:27 PM PST
MarcTheKing says:
RichieV: I agree wholeheartedly. He is a master of his work. Many of the Spielberg films you mentioned at the end are considered cornerstones of the genre they inhabit.
ET: # 1 Family Movie
Jaws: Top 5 Horror Films
Raiders: Top 10 Greatest Action Movies
Close Encounters: Top 10 Sci-Fi
Schindlers List: Top 10 Dramas

He has made some clunkers but on whole each film he makes is entertaining and a study in timing and message. I love his stuff.
Saving Private Ryan: Top 10 War Movie

Posted on Jan 14, 2013 12:39:09 PM PST
Duel is one of his best films. I was 12 when I watched it and it has remained in my top 100 films ever since.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 12:49:49 PM PST
KinksRock says:
I haven't liked every single thing he's done, but I wouldn't single him out like this either. Some of the greatest films of all time have his name on them in some capacity.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 12:51:34 PM PST
Oskar2525 says:
"He is a master of his work"

Please explain this statement. How is he a master in anyway?

The fact of the matter is he is not a master. He got lucky early in his career with some good scripts and his career took off. Ignorant movie goers fell for all the publicity he was getting.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 12:52:29 PM PST
RichieV says:
Funny you should mention clunkers Marc, because I actually enjoyed 1941 in spite the bad reviews.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 12:55:36 PM PST
RichieV says:
Oskar2525 says: He got lucky early in his career with some good scripts...

Richiev says: I believe being able to find a good script is an art.

Posted on Jan 14, 2013 1:41:24 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 14, 2013 1:42:34 PM PST
Spielberg overrated?

Well, duh.

He's dreadfully sentimental. It's impossible to get thorough ET, less alone AI, without an insulin shot. Sentimentality mars Close Encounters badly.

He's preachy. Schindler's List and Lincoln aren't films, they are sermons.

He's capable of out and out junk. The remake of War of the Worlds, for instance.

Jurassic Park and Jaws are the equivalents of theme part thrill rides--well made, but they evaporate once you leave them.

His best work, by far, has been the Indiana Jones films.

And he's not getting better as time goes on.

And please--number one family film? Is that a critical judgement? Kids deserve a lot better than that.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 1:48:45 PM PST
KinksRock says:
Gotta disagree with you re: JAWS, SL, LINCOLN, JURASSIC PARK.

I was not into ET, thought AI was awful, and, yeah, WoW was not so good.

So he's got hits and misses like most directors/producers. But he always has JAWS -- in most film fans' top 10.

Posted on Jan 14, 2013 2:07:48 PM PST
Yeah, you almost can't argue.

But he's a decent filmmaker. Visually, he's one of the best directors in history. Sure, he has many a bad flick here and there, but he's far from the basement level of directing. Schindler's List is a hard one to sit through due to its all too realistic violence, but I'd defend it. Raiders of the Lost Ark is perfect fun. If it's overrated, I'll eat my hat.

Jaws is an extraordinarily well made thriller with an excellent score and supreme editing.

Jurassic Park is overrated. Fun? Yes. But overrated.

Lincoln is carried due to perhaps the finest dialogue and performances in any of his films.

I wouldn't say he's overrated by critics, but more by the general public, who needs to see more Buster Keaton films.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 3:20:06 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 14, 2013 3:20:41 PM PST
I agree. The man is overrated. I do think he is a good director, and has made some really good films, but the "one of the greatest of all time" talk - that does exist in abundance - is over the top, IMO.

If you do think him one of the greatest of all time, that's cool, each to his/her own. 'Jaws' is in my Top10, but films like 'Hook', 'War of the Worlds', 'Catch Me if You Can', 'Minority Report', 'A.I'...well, two words: "dung" and "heap".

Posted on Jan 14, 2013 3:30:37 PM PST
Zolar Waka says:
Jaws, Duel, Raiders, Saving Private Ryan, Lincoln. Have yet to see Munich; could leave the rest.

I've never really been a huge fan of Spielberg, but Lincoln was really well done and turned the tide for me on Spielberg. I can appreciate him for being one of the best modern, mainstream American directors.

Even if all he ever did was Duel (Jaws is pretty much the same movie), that'd probably still be true (but I'd remove the "mainstream" part). Duel is such a great movie.

Posted on Jan 14, 2013 5:30:41 PM PST
Mike Gordan says:
From Spielberg, these films are what really work for me:

Duel
Jaws
Close Encounters with the Third Kind
1941
Raiders of the Lost Ark (and the rest of the Indiana Jones movies for that matter)
Saving Private Ryan
Catch Me if You Can
The Adventures of Tintin

Borderline:

Hook: Witless and sentimental, but harmless and mildly enjoyable I thought
Jurassic Park: A thrill ride to be sure, but it too is mildly entertaining; not the sequel though
Minority Report: Decent, but Spielberg never had quite acquired the talent or vision to carry Phillip K. Dick

Those that don't quite work for me:

Sugarland Express: Reads like a second rate study of Dog Day Afternoon
Always: I liked this movie better when it was called Here Comes Mr. Jordan or the 1978 version of Heaven Can Wait
Schindler's List: A one-time worthy viewing experience; no lasting appeal other than to preach
Amistad: Preachy and cloyingly sentimental
War of the Worlds: Not a big fan of H.G. Welles, and it shows in his adaptation of the material
Munich: Something about that film doesn't feel right, and I can't put my finger on it
Lincoln: Well acted, but given how much material is presented, it's ultimately a base and shallow biopic on a great, complicated man; it's release was clearly meant to tie in to Barrack Obama's reelection.

And the films that are complete junk:

E.T.
The Color Purple
Empire of the Sun
The Lost World: Jurassic Park
A.I. (Spielberg sure does have a pentient on making really bad films possessing initials followed up by their translations, does he?)
War Horse

And I haven't seen The Terminal yet...I do believe that's the one modern film he's done that easily slips under everybody's radar.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 7:43:18 PM PST
toprat says:
He is definitely not humble. I agree with you wholeheartedly.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 16, 2013 7:35:00 AM PST
KinksRock says:
I didn't think MUNICH worked that well. I thought the sex scenes were distracting and unnecessary.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 16, 2013 12:19:51 PM PST
With the exception of "Jaws" and "Raiders" most of his films only stand up to one viewing. They don't usually have many "layers." Everything is pretty much right up front so that there is little to think about when the movie is over. Stuff like "Empire of The Sun", "A.I.", and "E.T.", and "Super 8" are so gushingly sentimental that I can barely sit through parts of them.

He took a step in the right direction with "Munich" to avoid oversimplified contrasts between good guys and bad guys.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 16, 2013 1:06:01 PM PST
Kinks: Jaws is not even in my top 100. Well made for what it is, I grant you. I've seen it exactly once; I got it; I never need to see it again.

Posted on Jan 16, 2013 2:42:01 PM PST
Zolar Waka says:
He didn't direct Super 8...although it felt like he did.

Posted on Jan 16, 2013 3:52:24 PM PST
JMM says:
Well, Spielberg is probably the most well known film director alive today. Of course many people are going to think he is overrated. There is a reason he is so popular. He knows how to tell simple stories in a effective and entertaining way.

Spielberg is one of my favorite "mainstream" directors. So many other filmmakers waste the big budgets of studio movies. At least Spielberg knows basic camera work and production value - in my view he is a master in visual storytelling.

Yes, he is sometimes manipulative of the audience's emotions (though this is also a result of Williams' music) - but what's wrong with that? I don't mind a movie that wears its heart on its sleeve.

In the last 10 or so years, I can name four Spielberg films - Minority Report, Munich, War Horse, and Lincoln - that I regard among the best films of their respective years. So I'm a big fan, and I'm always looking forward to seeing his next film.

Posted on Jan 16, 2013 10:38:22 PM PST
Spielberg can be too overly cute in his movies. Thats my biggest problem with some of his movies. Saving Private Ryan kind of changed that with the exception of the "coward" killing the German after he let him kill the American soldier because he was too scared to help him. I love Jaws too.

Posted on Jan 17, 2013 7:55:30 AM PST
Mike Gordan says:
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In reply to an earlier post on Jan 17, 2013 9:19:09 AM PST
Zolar Waka says:
Nobody wants me over there...as vocal a detractor of Spielberg I've been in recent times, this year I'd vote for Lincoln for at least best actor and best film.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 17, 2013 5:39:50 PM PST
BackToGood says:
Virtually any major director, actor, etc. could be considered "overrated". I agree that some of Spielberg's later work is somewhat overrated, but NOT earlier films like "Jaws" and "Duel". Those movies proved the Spielberg could do suspense in the vein of the master Alfred Hitchcock!

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 17, 2013 6:07:46 PM PST
Hitchcock praised Jaws, let it be known.
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Discussion in:  Movie forum
Participants:  25
Total posts:  46
Initial post:  Jan 14, 2013
Latest post:  Sep 19, 2013

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