Movie Bob's Concepts of Criticism - A Video on the Escapist

So what Movie Bob is discussing here is criticism, specifically film criticism. But you can't watch this and not think about the whole Goodreads Suddenly Trying to Redefine What Criticism Is When The Concept Has Been Already Changed Thanks to The Internet, Etc. thing. Because that's what's at the heart of the GR kerfuffle - criticism has morphed into multiple forms, and GR is trying to implement rules that just don't work well with what we've come to expect of the format.


Anyway, the video linkage:


The Big Picture: Baggage



Movie Bob is specifically talking about why it works to bring outside factors in to your criticism of something - in his case, why he chose to discuss Orson Scott Card's many anti-homosexual statements in his review of Ender's Game (that video is here, Salon article referred to is: Orson Scott Card's Long History of Homophobia.). The baggage is any discussion of race, class, gender, etc. in criticism when some folk will always say "that doesn't belong here, just judge the work, not the society or the filmaker or the writer" - you see why this is relevant now, right?


He also gives a really quick, concise rundown of the history of criticism and media, and as an English major I love this, because it's exactly the definition I had in my college writing classes. It's also right on point with the grad school classes I took in film and film theory - and all in 7 minutes. Which is why I'm referring it to you. He covers a lot, and talks rapidly - but then I'll often re-listen to Movie Bob's film reviews just to ponder some of the asides. He's particularly good at explaining to a viewership of (probably) mostly male, younger gamers why such things matter. (Note: I don't always agree with all his reviews. But then that's been true of almost every movie reviewer I've read/listened to.)


I also love his line, the "it" being criticism: "Think of it as mixed martial arts for intellectual disciplines." Because that made me think of Criticism Ninjas, which is a thing that should exist.


I'd also like to note here that The Escapist is a website that focuses on video games as well as other pop culture. Video game reviewing is another form of criticism that certain folk are sniffily snobbish over. But hey, if film criticism is now legit - when it very much wasn't when the medium was introduced, and took the French to argue it into being taken a bit more seriously - then game crit should be too. As should, frankly, all such criticism of any media. Let the reader decide the merits of each by weighing the writer's arguments and then their own thoughts, feelings and yes, their own criticism.


[You can imagine me, at this point, waving a small Go Team Critque flag. If there was such a thing.]