V for Vendetta

Posted 10 years ago by Adam Gautsch



others have had a hand at evoking dystopia before and they've done a great deal better: In "1984," George Orwell really worked out the engineering details of such a place and understood its conceptual underpinnings, how the essence of totalitarianism was control of language, education and history. But that was a work of art and genius, where "V for Vendetta" is a piece of pulp claptrap; it has no insights whatsoever into totalitarian psychology and settles always for the cheesiest kinds of demagoguery and harangue as its emblems of evil.

Damn it---there are few things worse than Stephen Hunter, the best film critic ever, destroying the only movie you've wanted to see in the last 6 months.

9 Comments

nobrainer ~ 10 years ago

It occurs to me, just now, that I more thoroughly enjoy a well-written review than most movies themselves.

Adam ~ 10 years ago

It's still got 73% on Rotten Tomatoes, so it really can't be as bad as all that:
www.rottentomatoes.com/m/vforvendetta/

Adam Gautsch ~ 10 years ago

I trust Stephen Hunter over all RT reviewers combined. That being said, I'm still going to see the damn thing.

nobrainer --- you're right I imagine there will be few scenes in the movie better than a sentence like

But that was a work of art and genius, where “V for Vendetta” is a piece of pulp claptrap; it has no insights whatsoever into totalitarian psychology and settles always for the cheesiest kinds of demagoguery and harangue as its emblems of evil.

Jim ~ 10 years ago

My two cents on film critics and their reviews - they aren't worth two cents. I'll be seeing V for Vendetta no matter what some Hollywood hotshot thinks or says. I think the movie looks awesome.

Michael ~ 10 years ago

Yeah, Wired mag gave it poor reviews as well. But, I think I will still see it -if only for the cinematography and color. I think a comparision to a Strokes album is waranted: You know there is no substance in the lyrics whatsoever, but, it sounds so damn good...

Adam Gautsch ~ 10 years ago

Saw it, it's a terrible, terrible, movie.

Evan Tishuk ~ 10 years ago

I also just finished watching it. It could have been good. It had potential.

I wouldn't call it "terrible," like Gigli-terrible. It was just shallow and felt formulaic. When the camera panned the gallery of dead characters as they watched the parliment building explode---barf. Oooh, or when what's her face was crying in the rain like Andy Dufresne from Shawshank. Oooohh, or when they so cleverly had the "V" worked into key imagery (blood smears, fireworks, dominoes, etc).

Sigh.

James Roe ~ 10 years ago

I thought the movie was well done. Granted I haven't read the comic, which from what I've gleaned off of various sites is a blessing.

To respond to a couple of random comments from these Evan Tishuk, the part with the water was the contradictory image to the phoenix. In the scenario that played out she was extinguishing his inner hate. Perhaps thats trite imagery, but the whole movie was a masterful concoction of trite imagery.

I've seen far too many movies at this point in my life, it's hard to come across anything that is novel. What I liked about this movie is that it never attempted to be new and interesting. It was a masterful mixing of the imagery of 1984, phantom of the opera, fight club, and batman.

In an age of mashup culture this movie is mashup symbology. Some of the quotes are truly incredible, "People shouldn't fear their government, their government should fear the people." I can see why there is a lot of hate directed in its general direction, but to call it substance less is wrong.

Attack it for glorifying terrorism, or for not having the cajhones to invent some new cinemographic style, that probably would have resulted in it being lampooned, but don't behind false accusations. The movie is clearly an indictment of contemporary politics. The montage of news stations insighting fear in the populace looks suspiciously like the evening news here in the states.

Evan Tishuk ~ 10 years ago

The whole movie was a masterful concoction of trite imagery

Well put.

To me, it was more the cheese factor of the imagery and messages. Maybe I've read too much Noam Chomsky, but those "truly incredible" lines sounded cliche. Nothing earth shattering there---it's the same relativistic "us and them" questions about what an enemy is.

Attack it for glorifying terrorism

How could anyone do that? We'd have to then attack "Braveheart," "The Last of the Mohicans," "Star Wars," "Pirates of the Caribbean," "Fight club," "The Patriot," "The Matrix," "Spartacus", and any Robin Hood rendition.

The montage of news stations insighting fear in the populace looks suspiciously like the evening news here in the states.

Yeah, if you've seen Outfoxed or Bowling for Columbine (as I'm sure you have) it's just a caricature of those caricatures.

I thought, or hoped, those points (fear, psychology, control, etc) were all fairly well established and understood already. I wanted to see another step in that direction rather than just getting the same message beat into my head.

Like I said, it isn't a bad movie. It just doesn't deserve that much praise. Nice try, but The Matrix is 1,000,000 times better.

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