Steven Spielberg Thinks I’m Dumb 26 September 2006Posted by VARANGALI in Humor, Reviews, VARANGALI.
I am no movie critic, and have never met Steven Spielberg. I would imagine he is a gentleman, dedicated to his work and just pompous enough to avoid the crowds. Yet we have a relationship, he and I: I watch his movies, and he thinks I’m dumb.
This is most evident in his butchering of Stanley Kubrick’s A.I. Spielberg takes over the film’s production after Kubrick dies, who made the first two-thirds of the movie. Whereas Kubrick’s movie was an awkward meditation on the alienation of childhood, Speilberg turns it into a heart-wrenching tale of a boy incessantly looking for his mommy. Who wouldn’t be moved to tears by this? Me.
Spielberg, in short, is the master of the unsubtle. When seeking to convey the horrors of war in Saving Private Ryan, he zooms in on Tom Hanks’ eternally shaky hands. Five minutes later he does it again. And again in another ten minutes. And just in case you missed it the first few times, Hanks trembles his hands a few more times for the camera. I do not mean to make light of the horrors of war – Spielberg in fact tends to place his schlock in morally absolute contexts – who dare mock the horrors of war (Saving Private Ryan), slavery (Amistad), or childhood innocence (E.T.)?
Perhaps Spielberg should stick to work devoid of moral judgment – I remain a big fan of Back to the Future, Animaniacs, and Catch Me If You Can. Or maybe he should just refrain from ruining his own great movies with his unflinching belief that I won’t “get it,” and therefore he must hammer it in.
And enough with the Tom Hanks fixation, there are other overachieving actors out there who could use a hand.