Monday, March 19, 2007

Peter Bart Blasts NYTimes' "Tony" Scott

There are many ways to asses the second week of B.O. boffo that "300" is giving off. One, it is the triumph of The Geek. Frank Miller is old school like that. Two, it is the rise of The Classics. HBO's sleeper hit "Rome," like "300" plays into the theory that the ancient epics speak more directly today to the exigencies of this age of The War on Terror, and the new American Empire. Three: Stupid movies are the new black.

Variety's editor and former NY Times Hollywood reporter Peter Bart took out his ruler and robustly rapped NYTimes film critic AO Scott on the knuckles with regards to his hifailure to predict the poularity of "300". From Variety:

"Box office data this year suggests that filmgoers seem to be having a great time at the multiplexes. The critics, by contrast, may be shopping around for a new line of work.

"In reviewing '300' last week, for example, A.O. (Tony) Scott of the New York Times, said the movie was "as violent as 'Apocalypto' and twice as stupid."

"...The distribution gurus say they prefer "four-quadrant movies," but I"d suggest that there are only two: One quadrant consists of the hardcore fans who are propelled by "buzz" and the second embraces the rest of the filmgoing public who wait to learn whether the movie"s any good or not.

"As for the critics, they should consider a sabbatical until September, when movies aimed at their quadrant magically reappear. After seeing "Ghost Rider" and "300" back-to-back, battle fatigue has clearly overwhelmed the entire fraternity.

"And, by the way, if you've ever met a film critic, you"ll know they're not big on either the pectoral, deltoid or other muscle groups."

Oh snap. Next week, Tony Scott talks about Peter Bart's mother. From Variety

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