Thursday, January 5, 2012

His World of Flops

If I could claim to have a favorite website (outside of the ones that show the ladies cavorting friskily), it would be the Onion A.V. Club.  It's updated regularly with a good mix of current reviews, interviews, feature articles, and my personal favorite, the reexamination of past cultural artifacts.

The best example of the latter is when one of the writers picks an angle for a series of articles to get a handle on a topic - not just a random tumble through the past.  I've mentioned here before Noel Murray's great Popless column, in which the music critic went a year without listening to any new releases, and instead reviewed his entire extant record collection alphabetical by artist.  A neat wrinkle was the simultaneous goal of scraping the barnacles out of the collection, capped by a mix of full artist reviews and single song exegeses.

A current and more commercially successful excavation (there's a book, which I really do need to add to my wish list) is 'My World of Flops' by the him of this Rambler's title, Nathan Rabin.  A simple but excellent way to examine perceived and actual failure at the crossroads of art and finance - films that tanked at the box office.  How they failed, why they failed, should they have or shouldn't they? The beauty of the concept is that it allows Rabin to promote unjustly maligned classics as well as lace into some truly deserving cinematic turds.  I confess to being one of those people that really enjoys a good mean critical lambasting, but I also enjoy (for personal and transparently obvious reasons) reading while someone holds up the lost treasure, the discarded gem or the flawed but still worthy work.

All that is my way of saying that one of my favorite indefensibles, The Frighteners, is the subject of this week's entry, so go over there and read about it when you get a chance.

I'm calling it a night, but don't forget to dig through all of the great and insightful Star Trek and ST:TNG reviews there.  And I can't tell you how hot I am to read the soon-to-start top to bottom reviews of Deep Space Nine, still my favorite show of all time.


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