Saturday, July 22, 2006

Censorship is Alive and Well

I was all set to review Miami Vice on Monday, looking forward to it even, as I'm a fan of director Michael Mann's previous efforts and, hey, who can resist the charm of rolled-up sleeves on a pastel sports coat? Unfortunately, the screening has been taken away from me; my privileges have been revoked.

Why? Did I make specific threats against Jamie Foxx's person because I didn't like his R&B album? Did I go to the press and tell them I was going to pan the movie no matter what, due to my burning, Hinkley-esque desire to impress Colin Farrell?

No. Hollywood studios wouldn't blink an eye at those things; probably give me the royal treatment for doing them because, as they say, any publicity is good publicity.

The truth of the matter is this: My colleague at the magazine reviewed the unimaginable horror that is You, Me and Dupree last week and, because Brian is a rational man with a good soul and a pure heart, he basically told the movie, Owen Wilson, and everyone involved all the way down to the caterers to go fuck themselves. Apparently, disliking a shitty film such as this will bring down the hateful wrath of Universal Studios onto the heads of a scrappy independently run movie magazine such as Freeze Dried Movies; suddenly, the Miami Vice screening is overbooked. Sorry kids, no room for your cute litte "website," or whatever it is. Please let the door hit you in ass on the way out because that's what you get for bad-mouthing You, Me and Motherfucking Dupree, motherfucker!!!

We film critics... no, scratch that... we "unimportant" film critics are no longer able to give bad reviews. The fact that, when I see a film and don't like it, I actually have to consider watching my mouth in fear that I might not have work farther down the road is insulting, unfair and the worst, sneakiest kind of censorship. And I wish that I could say this was an isolated incident. A few months ago, another studio had my review for An American Haunting pulled from the website because it was negative, though their reason was that I hadn't seen a completed print of the film; that since then, a whole minute and a half of footage had been removed. Oooookay. Believe me when I say that there was a lot more than a minute and a half of crap in that movie.

Anyway, I suppose this is a lot like throwing rocks at a tank. They're not going to change their tactics and I'm going to continue getting banned from screenings because I refuse, as does my fellow writer Brian, to alter our opinions in any way. If the tank runs over us now and again, I guess that's just Hollywood, friend, and don't you forget it.

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