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Your Movie Sucks Paperback – March 1, 2007
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I am a devoted fan of camp, and some of the films in this book sound as if they will definitely fall into that arena. For those of us who value movies so bad they're good, parts of this book read like a shopping list. I am embarrassed to admit that I have seen several of these features, and in each instance of encountering a film I had seen Ebert was both accurate and amusing: his edicts were unerring and frequently hilarious. Fortunately, Ebert not only displays wit, but also good judgment: some of the films in this book are so awful, despair laden, and dark (e.g. "Wolf Creek") as to inspire only genuine loathing. I appreciate that Ebert makes it clear that there some movies so bad as to not be enjoyable on any plane.
These reviews are informative in another way: they inspire critical thinking about films and specifically about what makes a film bad or good. To be sure there are times in the past that I have disagreed with Ebert, and I'm sure if I sat through all the refuse that is this subject of this book, I would find something to disagree with him about here too. Having said all that, regarding the movies I have seen, including the utterly wretched "Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo" which serves as an introduction to the book in one of Ebert's strongest efforts, and "Corky Romano" which I saw in Iceland with Icelandic subtitles (the subtitles were by far more amusing than the movie) Ebert is squarely on target and more generous in his appraisal than I would have been.
This is a great book, and I encourage anyone who loves movies (bad or good) to read it and cherish it.
Oddly, though, as I grow older I find myself agreeing more and more often with his assessment of what makes a given movie worthwhile, especially when it comes to the current crop of high concept would-be blockbusters, brain-dead romantic comedies,empty CGI fests and music videos pretending to be feature length films. So am I growing smarter, or is he??
But in any case, one thing was never in doubt - Ebert knows how a write a truly striking review...especially when he thinks a movie sucks. The prose here is to die for - he neatly skewers target after target with epigrammatic precision that would make William F. Buckley or Christopher Hitchens smile in admiration. I kept wanting to call friends up and share especially mordant and snarky passages from YMS with them, but I realized that I soon would exhaust their patience, since I'd be reading practically the entire book, line by line, over the phone. I kept wanting to underline really good quotable passages with a yellow underliner, but I soon saw that the book would soon have more yellow than white.
Etc. If you are a fan of movies, and if you enjoy good writing and well thought out critical analysis that might expand your understanding of storytelling, literature and film, get this book. Even if you disagree with his ratings, you'll learn a lot about why you love movies.