I was self-diagnosed with “Early Onset Curmudgeon Syndrome” at about 20 years old. Loud noises, “YOUTHS”, crowds (especially if the former two were combined), or any sort of tomfoolery was very off-putting. Give me my quiet, my personal space, and stay off my GD lawn.
That being said, that young grump never let curmudgeon-hood shape his view of the arts. I’m also very happy to say that 20 (or so 😉) years later (with curmudgeonhood in full bloom), it still doesn’t.
Recently, there has been a bit of drama surrounding Martin Scorsese saying that superhero movies “weren’t cinema“. He was likely thinking this was the height of insults, but his fellow film-maker Francis Ford Coppola stepped in with a solid “HOLD MY BEER” (he stated Marvel films were “despicable”).
Thankfully, the heart of the MCU (and soon the DCEU), Director James Gunn rolled in with a summation that was heartfelt, and very on point:
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Many of our grandfathers thought all gangster movies were the same, often calling them “despicable”. Some of our great grandfathers thought the same of westerns, and believed the films of John Ford, Sam Peckinpah, and Sergio Leone were all exactly the same. I remember a great uncle to whom I was raving about Star Wars. He responded by saying, “I saw that when it was called 2001, and, boy, was it boring!” Superheroes are simply today’s gangsters/cowboys/outer space adventurers. Some superhero films are awful, some are beautiful. Like westerns and gangster movies (and before that, just MOVIES), not everyone will be able to appreciate them, even some geniuses. And that’s okay. ❤️
As this grump gets even older, there will certainly be some aspects of cinema, music, tech etc that will escape my personal taste or understanding…but I’d never begrudge those that create or partake in it. It’s art coming from communities (where art is created to reflect a shared experience) that I’m not a part of.
I have hope for myself, and for those also aging a bit. We don’t have to end up shi**ing on things made by younger generations simply because we don’t ‘get it’. This epidemic seems to take hold of many who grow old, so it will clearly take some work…but it’s work I’m very very happy to do.
For real, though, kids. Please get off my lawn and go make your art somewhere else (just please please please send me a link to it when you’re done ❤️️ ).