Tuesday, July 05, 2005
No? No. Yes.
Critics aren't drooling over Yes like I thought they'd be. Which is fine, but disappointing. Even more disappointing, though, is how brutal some of the reviews are:
"...a harlequin romance novel masquerading as a dissertation" (Wesley Morris of The Boston Globe).
"Mostly unbearable" (Mick LaSalle of The San Francisco Chronicle).
"A bad poem" (A.O. Scott of The New York Times).
"...has nothing of real depth or profundity to say" (Scott Foundas of Variety).
And despite my furious disagreement with his opinion, Anthony Lane wrote a really funny pan of the movie in The New Yorker.
Regardless. Ouch. Ebert, thankfully, is championing the film. Yes opened in New York June 24, and I'm not sure how and when it's rolling out elsewhere, but see it if you get the chance. Joan Allen is incandescent and Sally Potter is one of the most interesting directors working today. The movie really is a breathtaking work that seeks to turn the concept of movies inside out.
Which is why a lot of critics got pissy. It's fine if a movie sucks, but to deride it for simply aiming high -- that's counter-productive. Andrew Sun of The Hollywood Reporter said "The movie is too ambitious." Uh huh. Understandable. There's too much ambition in movies these days. It's distracting. Where's our American Pie 4?