Sunday, January 07, 2007

Corliss On 3quels

Richard Corliss has written a piece for Time about '3quels', those second sequels that seem to be sweeping this summer's blockbuster roster. Okay, fair enough, everybody else has been chatting this idea up a while, and yes, there do seem to be a lot of these films about, but...

...for one thing, he's way off the mark in classifying Spider-Man 3 and Ocean's 13 as nothing more than "machines, designed to replicate themselves forever" and claiming they aren't "organic, like The Lord of the Rings and the first two Godfather films, in which a complex story unfolded in lavish detail and made audiences gasp in fear and wonder."

I honestly believe that the 2nd and 3rd Spider-Man films will be seen as a wonderful, intricately interwoven pair of building stories, each an accomplished movie in it's own right, but working best as a pair. That's not coming out of thin air, but based upon all I know of the 3rd film, and a solid appreciation of the 2nd.

Not for one second do I think Ocean's 13 is a hollow attempt to milk the great American wallet - and while we're on the subject, neither was 12. Making an entertainment is obviously not the same as fleecing an audience, but to hear some bloggers, journalists, critics and commentators talk... sheesh.

Of course, any number of these '3quels' will be little more than vapid trickery and branding exercises masquerading as call-backs and running jokes, lowest common denominator set-pieces and rehashes of the previous film's most popular pieces. That's a reasonable assumption - it's just obvious that it doesn't apply across the board.

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