Rum, Sodomy, and the Lash: Pick Two (aghrivaine) wrote,
Rum, Sodomy, and the Lash: Pick Two

Salon Movie Reviews

I love I've been a subscriber since that was even possible, and I check the site at least daily. Their news coverage, opinion pieces, book reviews - they're all really excellent. But their movie reviews are awful. I don't even bother reading them, anymore - their critics (cheifly Stephanie Zacharek, Andrew O'Hehir and Charles Taylor ((Note: NOT the African dictator Charles Taylor))) are generally clueless, not very enthusiastic about cineman in general, and often make factual errors in their critical pieces.

I've written to the editor in the past, and once or twice they've even published my letters-to-the-editor. So today, I read Stephanie Zacharek's review of "Sin City" and decided to stop stewing about their sub-par critics, and sound off. I've sent more praise than complaints in the past, and generally believe that reader/user feedback is important to improvement. Further, I hesitate to raise a problem unless I can also suggest a solution. And lastly, I was pretty proud of that review of "Sin City" I just wrote myself. So, I sent their Arts And Entertainment Editor, Kerry Lauer, a letter expressing my disappointment in the quality of their criticism, and including my own review of Sin City.

Of course, I hoped that I would get a letter back getting offered a freelance writing gig. Hey, if I never try, I'll never fly. I can say I met with partial success - on one hand Ms. Lauer actually read my letter, because she did reply. On the other hand, she told me that "building myself up, while tearing others down may seem like a good idea, but actually comes across quite juvenile."

Grr. I should have stuck to the central thesis (Bad movie reviews, find better critics) and not suggested myself as a potential replacement, thus rendering my authority as suspect due to self-interest. I don't really think what I expressed was juvenile, and am disappointed it was received that way. And quite frankly, I'm going to hold my breath until she takes it back and gives me a job!

(Note: the last sentence was self-satire. This message provided for the satire-impaired)

I still hope Salon gets some better critics. The two they've got just don't cut it.

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