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January 16, 2010


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the fans who are reading these reviews deserve more, if you lie to them and they spend hard earned money on films that were sub par because YOU said they were "amazing" you run the risk of not only loosing a fan but having word spread that you can not be taken seriously s a critic.

Keep up the honesty Zoc, the public needs you!

Later days,
Christopher Zenga


Sean, yes, interviews are very important. They provide the background to help understand where creative people are coming from and why decisions are made. It's not an easy line to walk if your main task is to critique; but an informative interview can sidestep that part to a large extent. I've interviewed people whose movies I may not have liked, but I still enjoyed speaking with them and learned a lot.

Sean Abley

I couldn't agree more, but I wonder if there's room for doing a positive interview or profile on the filmmaker, even if they've made a bad film? My blog is almost entirely interviews of queer filmmakers, or filmmakers that have made films with queer content. I've stated frequently that I don't do reviews (mainly because I'm a filmmaker myself), but I will give even bad filmmakers a fun, upbeat interview because I want to encourage more queer content, and point people toward it so they can make up their own minds about the flicks.

I'd hate to have this seen as giving a good review when one isn't warranted. I hope that profiles of filmmakers, good or bad, can be taken as just that - profiles meant to entertain.

I'll be honest - I work for The Man, writing the Gay of the Dead blog on Fangoria.com. Which probably leads some folks to think I'm just a PR agent for my interview subjects... (and also seems to keep me out of any independent blog fun, sadly...)


Pax Romano

and here's the union we need...


Pax Romano

I've only been offered three screeners, turned them all down. It's not that I would not mind watching said films and reviewing them, but I really don't have the time. Also, even if I did not like the film, I'd feel obliged to write something about it. That said, one must understand that many bloggers (B-Sol being an exception) have never worked for a legitimate publication, so they probably don't understand that getting a pass to a film, or a screener does not mean that they have to write something positive about said film.


I've found that it does seem a lot of times that writers are simply afraid to hurt people's feelings. Which has to make me ask, why do you want to review movies, then? You have to have a thick skin, or don't bother writing reviews. They will be a waste of space on your blog, you should devote your space to other content.
To LYZ, I agree that's very unfortunate, but clearly this filmmaker is an egomaniacal dolt. This is also the chance you take when reviewing movies--many critics are unpopular, and if you decide to be one, even as a blogger or amateur online writer, you have to be willing to deal with that if need be. Otherwise, don't do it. Reviewing movies should NOT be a method for making friends with filmmakers.

Bloofer Lady

I find that some people think that writing only glowing reviews will make them more popular with film makers in the horror community.The problem really arises when people want to become friends with every film maker so they feel like they have to give good reviews or these people won't like them. Writing movie reviews, and being a journalist, shouldn't be about how many friends you make it should be about how well written your reviews are.

I have reviewed some screeners and I am always very honest as to whether or not they are well done. I always take budget constraints and the like into consideration, but I wouldn't ever lie about how the movie itself is. Some film makers are very happy about getting an honest review while others didn't talk to me afterwards. Fim makers have got to realise that not everybody will totally like their film, and if they don't have a thick skin then they shouldn't be in the business of making films in the first place.


I learned the hard way to be careful about what you say in a review. I was friends with a straight-to-DVD horror movie director till he read the review of one of his films I wrote. Totally insulted, he never talked to me again. Now he is getting more and better projects and I'm left with an enemy in Hollywood for when I graduate film school.

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