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LONG BLOG

Out of the Box: Who Wants A Film to Fail?

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There’s a common sentiment I saw among many detractors of the recently released Captain Marvel film. And it’s not from people who even saw the film (presumably). But a segment Marvel fans who were adamantly against Brie Larson’s “SJW Agenda” refused to see it, with many being quoted as “hoping it would fail.” All I can ask is why? Why do you want this to fail? If you don’t like Brie Larson, that’s fine. That’s your preference or lack-thereof for actresses. But you like Samuel L Jackson? What about Jude Law? Hell, do you just enjoy cool cosmic-Marvel shenanigans? Then you’re kind of missing out on some pretty decent stuff. Or was it not about Brie Larson? Were you just against a woman being more powerful than a man in a superhero film? Because if it really is feminist propaganda you were trying to avoid, there really wasn’t a lot in there. No more than the civil rights propaganda you’d have to also claim is in Black Panther. Or anti-war propaganda in Iron man and Captain America films. Or spiritual freedom propaganda kind of present in Dr Strange. Films have political messages, but you can clearly see they haven’t dominated Marvel films at this point. And they really didn’t here. But back to the original question, why do you want this to fail? Or, to phrase it in a more apt way, why does this film DESERVE to fail in your eyes? Why do the actors, writers, director, studio, and many talented people who worked hard on this film deserve to see this fail to you? And why does this film’s overall success impact your life? How does the success one film you aren’t interested in seeing make your life worse? Why can’t you just sit on the sidelines and say, “Not my jam, but best of luck to it” or “I won’t go see it, but I certainly hope it does well for those who like it.” I’m not saying you have to like the film, but why do you have to hate enough to want it to fail? This hearkens back to the 2016 election for me personally. I didn’t vote for Trump. And most people I know personally didn’t either. But so many were quick to say they want him to fail and get booted out of office. Hearing this, I would sit, listen and ask the question, “Why do you want the person in charge of our country to fail?” I understand not liking the man. I’m with the many voices who think he is part of a growing systemic problem within our government in all branches and aspects of said government. But his failure has VAST implications for our country both social and economic. Yes, you’d get him out of office faster, but what is the state of the world should he fail bad enough to be removed from office? If there is even an office left to be removed from? Now, a failure of Captain Marvel wouldn’t reach the same cataclysmic levels of a world-leader failing to operate as such. And seeing the estimated box office totals exceed the predicted numbers going into the opening weekend, Captain Marvel is as much of a success as your average origin story Marvel film. No surprise there. But what if it did actually fail? What would this mean for Marvel, Disney, and the cinema as far as comic book movies are concerned? I think we’re safe from a Batman & Robin scenario where comic book movies just CEASE to be a thing for a handful of years. Remember, it was that film that put the superhero genre on ice for about 3 years until X-Men brought it back in full force in 2000. And, god, can you remember a time when it took three years for another superhero movie of ANY studio to release? Now it’s more like just wait three months and here comes the next one. Even if Captain Marvel were to fall as hard as Batman & Robin, it wouldn’t derail the industry. Not when Marvel has at least three other films in the works and DC has… something going on. I’m never quite sure anymore since so many people have left their DCEU project because of how it was crashing and burning so hard nearly every six months. And now it’s on the upswing with Aquaman and what’s sure to be at least an interesting Shazam film this April. What would likely happen is an altering of future Marvel projects. Remember, they plan their movies way in advance. They haven’t announced the full slate of films, but I imagine they have a mostly intact, but still tentative schedule for their Phase 4 films. They plan out their big narrative arcs over the course of ten films or some such number, so they kind of have to know what they want to do and have back-up plans in case something doesn’t work out. (Such as the still not in production Guardians 3 situation). So if Captain Marvel were to somehow fail, it would most likely mean shoving her sequel off for later or never and reducing her role in upcoming films. There were rumors of two cuts for Endgame. One of which includes her saving the day with the heroes and one where she’s just kind of there, but far less significant to the plot. I say rumors because this is likely untrue considering how much work and time has gone into making this monster of a film. I can’t imagine the Russo’s want to bother with making two variations of a film to please the backwards-ass MRA idiots of the internet who don’t think a woman should have power over men or just hates even the hint of a feminist message behind anything. If there are two cuts, it’s more likely a reduction of (again) the Guardians of the Galaxy crew considering the troubled production behind that film’s third installment. Yes, there is something I’d rather talk about that’s more interesting, but that’s not what’s getting the headlines right now, is it? But aside from that, her failure wouldn’t have made that big an impact in the greater MCU films. You’re still going to get Black Panther 2 and Spider-man Far From Home and (Not) Guardians 3 and Dr Strange 2. There’s also apparently a Black Widow film in the works. Which, yay, but why did it take over ten years to get to this point? Maybe a failure on Captain Marvel would have hurt the chances of this film, but I highly doubt that as fans of all creed have actually wanted more from Black Widow since she’s mostly relegated to a side-character with an interesting backstory yet to be fully fleshed out. And she’s certainly evolved over the course of the films from being kind of a cipher to having a fully rounded character in the more recent films… to kind of being a smaller piece in this big event driven narrative of the big Avengers films. But, I mean, the focus by and large has been on Iron Man for a lot of these movies, so that’s not entirely surprising there. And that likely won’t change with End Game since this is the last show for him and Captain America and possibly a few others. So a failure of Captain Marvel would have little to no impact on either Marvel’s upcoming slate of films and on the comic book film industry as a whole. At most, it would impact those working on any Captain Marvel projects, meaning your hope for failure would result in hundreds of people losing jobs and having to find employment elsewhere. Easier for some than others, but doable. But in an unstable economy where big corporations can claim record profits and then fire 800 people within the same sentence, and have situations like that happen more than once in a week across multiple companies in different industries, this is something I don’t wish on anyone. I mean, fuck, I’m trying to find a better job than the shitty data-entry crap I have to do. Your wish for their failure further hinders my ability to find success. Those who wish for the failure of others think only of themselves and don’t consider the wider ramifications of something or someone actually failing. For an example, look at the season three episode of The Simpsons titled “When Flanders Failed,” in which Homer makes a wish for his neighbor’s new business to fail. It’s a gross moment for Homer because he makes himself out to be a horrible person when many surrounding episodes paint him in such a better light. And we see Flanders fail, sell off his many possessions for fractions of their actual price, and have to sleep in the car before his house is almost repossessed. An extreme example, to be sure. But those wishing for a film, a game, any production or business to fail simply because they don’t like one person or one aspect of said thing are genuinely heartless people who only want for themselves and don’t care about either the enjoyment or need of others OR don’t care about the livelihood of others. It is perfectly fine to not like someone or something, and still hope it does well. Most people who are aware of the situation don’t like Bryan Singer. Most hope he never finds work again because they don’t want to feed his alleged child-rapist ways. But many people still love his X-Men films because they love X-Men, Hugh Jackman, Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellan, Stan Lee, and so many other things tied into those films. It’s separating the art from the artist and while some will say it is impossible, I would say it certainly is doable. To make a long article summed up in a single paragraph - Brie Larson is a fine actress, but you’re well within your right to say you don’t want to see her in film. You don’t have to see her in any movie if you don’t want to. But there’s no reason to hope a movie she’s in fails. There’s no reason to hope everyone else attached to the film fails. And there’s no reason to hope millions of people who AREN’T you get a worse movie simply because YOU don’t like it. Because it’s not about you, and the world is so much bigger than that. And if you’ll pony up cash to go see films made by alleged child rapists, but refuse to see a film simply because the lead actress voiced some feminist beliefs you may disagree with… then maybe you’re the one who has to reevaluate what is important to you in your films.
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About EVacStationone of us since 8:13 AM on 03.11.2019