Alphabetical Movie – The Majestic
You know, I really loved The Majestic the first time I watched it. Until I watched it for the Alphabetical Movie Project, I hadn’t watched it again. I didn’t really understand why it was considered a bad film.
I don’t think it’s a bad movie. But wow. It is nowhere near as good as I remember.
I generally think I’m a bad judge of movies on a single viewing. I like a lot of films the first time I see them because I’m focused on the stuff that was good. Most films have at least a few parts that are good. It took me a few weeks of thinking about the film before I finally concluded that yes, Man of Steel was pretty dumb.
There was still stuff I liked in the film that I liked. Can’t recall what that stuff was but I remember there were a lot of parts I liked.
When I watch a movie in the theatre, I want it to be a good experience. I like seeing films in the movie theatre but it costs a lot to see go to the theatre. If I’m going to shell out money and time to see a film, I want to find something to enjoy.
A few years later, I’ll go back to a film like The Majestic and realize that my desire to enjoy the film was what made it worthwhile.
I’m not saying that is a bad thing. Unless my goal was to watch a bad film, it is actually a good thing to walk out of the theater feeling like it was time well spent.
My problem is more making the decision what to say about the film. My wife always wants to talk about a movie after we see it and that makes perfect sense. The challenge is that I need a little more time to digest and decide what I really feel about the movie. I’ve walked out of a theatre really disliking a movie and then later deciding that I judged it too harshly.
Often, though, I find myself liking a film with reservations and needing some time to process the reservations. I think that Wreck-it Ralph is a good example. I went into that movie wanting something very specific and what I got wasn’t quite what I’d been hoping for.
In subsequent viewings, I’ve come to appreciate the film as it is rather than as I wanted it to be.
I think The Majsetic, on the other hand, was a completely different movie in my head. When I saw it, I saw a film that felt like a modern Capra film. It was filled with optimism and I liked that because the world is so frequently filled with cynicism. Heck, I’m frequently filled with cynicism.
There is a point, however, where the film becomes little more than a sermon. And a clunky sermon at that.
I really love movies. I mean, I wouldn’t be watching every movie I own if I didn’t. Yet I’m usually insecure when it comes to my opinions about those movies because those opinions shift over time.
What I’ve eventually realized is that opinions can change. The best thing to do when that happens is embrace the new perspective and admit (sheepishly if appropriate) that I may have been wrong.
I was wrong about The Majestic.