Whereas Spider-Man: No Way Home is preparing on this Christmas day to cross the billion dollars at the global box office (we will make an article when it is formalized), the declarations of the persons in charge of the project, in particular vis-à-vis the debate of the formal quality of this third adventure, turns to the ridiculous. If the sphere of “cinephiles” is regularly and tirelessly punctuated by sterile debates on a loop, one would expect that professionals in the field would leave the peremptory positions or the sarcastic comments of bad players to the fans, without giving back. oil on the fire. Alas, the team Kevin feige seems to be a little too galvanized by money matters.
Profitability and quality, the eternal question
First, there is the subject of the Oscars. Every year, we witness the same masquerade from the entertainment majors: Marvel studios, particularly prolific, has got into the habit of campaigning for a good part of the films in its catalog over the space of a year, in all categories. By placing its directors, actors and actresses in the least potential selection, like an aspiring intern who would strafe CVs in the hope that, in the heap, one of the candidates will find a taker. These campaigns of “for your consideration“to the Academy are no longer surprising, but are based on a vision simplistic of how the movie industry works. Very often we hear in the mouth Feige that his films, pleasantly received by the public, would be victims of snobbery. Not to name (and not “nominate”, stop this damn Anglicism) popular works at the Oscars would be an insult to the work of its teams or to the tastes of the spectators.
Except that: a financial success does not guarantee the artistic quality of a film. And although the productions Marvel studios have their qualities, everyone agrees that going to name them elsewhere than for the “best special effects” or “best costumes / make-up” does not necessarily make sense. All the more so in the case of Spider-Man: No Way Home, whose staging suffers greatly from the comparison with previous films Spiderman that it invokes, by its distribution and some of its visual choices.
Yet according to the Hollywood Reporter, Kevin feige, Amy pascal and Tom rothman (in other words, the thinking heads of Marvel studios and Sony Pictures) are ready to go and fight crazy so that No Way Home is one of the nominees in the best film category. The trio is based on an argument that gets along perfectly and can even lead to respectful and interesting discussions: that it is not because a film brings in a lot of money that it would necessarily be devoid of cinematic qualities. The term “quality commercial cinema“is used on several occasions, in particular at Rothman. However, it would obviously be silly not to want to consider the place of superhero films in major awards ceremonies – and indeed, it never was. The case of The dark knight, Spider-Verse Where Logan informs about the hypocrisy of this speech: if Feige affirms that the Academy would seek to park the productions of the supermen in a corner of the room, in reality, several works will have already been classified in quite valid categories (best actor, best adapted screenplay, best animated film, etc. ). In truth, this argument mostly brushes aside the quality factor, a debate that irritates both the hard core of fans and those in charge of this kind of production – because “if the film makes money , it’s necessarily that it’s good “or” if the other films are better, why don’t they make as much? “.
“The academy needs to stay connected to the idea that quality commercial films are not easy to make. ” Explain Rothman. “We’re all in this industry to make movies that people want to see, that make them feel something, and I think [No Way Home] legitimately fulfills its role.“ensures Pascal. “I think it’s a good thing that people are getting up in the room and applauding. It’s a good thing they wipe away tears as they remember their last twenty years in the cinema, and what that means to them. For me, that’s a very good thing – the sort of thing to recognize and what the Academy was founded for, at the time.“, adds Feige. We can easily recognize by Spider-Man: No Way Home to have known how to speak to his audience and, yes, to have known how to generate emotions. However, the spectrum of emotions covered by superhero cinema in the mold of Marvel studios Where Sony Pictures remains relatively small: always limited to the same bundle of values, relatively stable from one project to another. Why Spiderman would then be more deserving than Shang-Chi ? Because people are clapping louder, or because the film had more cameos and surprise effects? What if we didn’t tend to confuse “the best film” and “the most entertaining film” too quickly?
To see what turn these hammered speeches will take in the weeks to come, and if Sony Pictures and Marvel studios will push to the end to get this nomination. Moreover, one might be surprised at this desire to receive the compliments of the mistress, or the respect of her peers, from two studios which have nothing more to prove. Kevin feige like Amy pascal have succeeded in their bet: superhero cinema dominates the world of modern culture, and one wonders what a statuette would add to this reality. As if the overwhelming power of the brand Marvel should also applaud, and that the rich landowner be given the keys to the city, as if to congratulate him, salute the prowess of having amassed such a bundle of dough. At the same time, we are also surprised to see Kevin feige frequently return to the same subject, when his films have not changed. Instead of drawing comparisons with the works put in competition each year, the loyal lieutenant of industries Disney persist and sign: it would be the fault of others, it would be unfair, it would be snobbery, and yes, the butter and the money of the butter will end up by dint of attempts.
Press tours, interviews, and all the media hype (the entity can easily afford an expensive advertising campaign) should once again fuel the news. What also annoy some of the cinephile spheres, with this attitude of a spoiled child who could not be satisfied with public success, but would also like less seen films (because more demanding, less accessible, less put forward by studios with empty pockets in an already very complicated year) be “punished” for not having earned the same sums of money.
Once again: we love superheroes and their adaptations in general, and feel that there is no reason to condemn them to this box of simple enjoyable entertainment, deserving but not necessarily more reckless. Over the years, we have especially acquired the necessary perspective to recognize that Marvel studios does not seek to produce “great films”. Even when they are, in our opinion, very good. Do we need a Marvel be nominated for the Oscars to be talked about? As much, making a category of “best popular film” for the ceremony did not seem to make sense, as much. Feige and his friends could also remember the number of films that they prevent to bring to life by the omnipresence of their productions (or by the work of undermining Disney at the top, Mouse Guard, we won’t forget you). Including within the same group, as evidenced by the way the steamroller No Way Home already crushes the competition, for good films ignored for lack of having in their possession one or more Spiderman to create the event.
In addition, there are comments from a Tom holland which again, shows a rather surprising lack of humility. For a good couple of years, the same question has come up over and over again: are superhero movies cinema or just amusement park rides? A question that follows on from the director’s comments Martin scorsese, who believed that the films of Marvel, in his eyes, do not fall within the definition of “real cinema”. In this case, we would like to prove him right on the question Spider-Man: No Way Home, whose incredible public success (and reactions in the hall, especially) evoke the images of big thrill rides, even sports or musical shows.
Since this outing, professional journalists have made a habit, stupid and whore, of adding fuel to the fire by asking all employees to Marvel studios to react in turn to the words of the director. As if to take advantage of a kind of “clash” spirit, and to give visibility to interviews that no one would have read. In the case of Tom holland, obviously, it did not fail, and the little guy even took the director of Taxi Driver : “You can ask Scorsese if he would like to make a Marvel movie, but he doesn’t know what it is because he’s never made one. I’ve done Marvel films, and I’ve also made films that were in the pipeline to go to the Oscars, and the only difference, really, is that one is much more expensive to make than the other. But the way I compose the character, the director of which engraves the sides of the story and the characters – it’s the same thing, but on a different scale.”
We can remind Holland the way that Marvel studios behaves with directors who do not bow to the guidelines of the studio and the vision of Kevin feige, which are quickly kicked out of projects. A situation that extends to all major Hollywood productions: entertainment cinema, too limited to following algorithmic formulas, no longer inspires the great directors who prefer to flee to the greenest meadows of SVOD , independent productions or the television series. Marvel has had its role to play in this collective disgust of employees in the field, since the famous “fatigue” of Joss whedon away fromEdgar wright, even the refusal of Feige to recognize the status of showrunners to the chief writers of recent family productions Disney +.
But, apart from these points of detail, it is above all (really) very astonishing to see the actor take such a look at the filmography of Martin Scorsese, monument of cinema almost summed up to a sort of old haters, without the slightest kind of humility. One wonders if this kind of comment is not made to motivate this kind of editorial or new heated debates on social networks, as to accompany the public discourse, and above all, to avoid questioning oneself.
In any event, it appears fairly obvious that Spider-Man: No Way Home, whatever the efforts of its producers, will not manage to be nominated to the Oscars (at least not in “best film”, considering everything that has come out this year). Kevin feige will stamp their feet on the ground, spectators who only consume blockbusters will cry out at the injustice, at the elitism of these cultural spheres and “of their Hungarian black and white films”, or other turnkey paraphrase to say “I don’t like cinema but let me give my opinion “, and nothing will have changed. A backup solution could then be to have the Oscars ceremony presented by Tom holland. The idea of seeing the actor defend No Way Home in front of the whole Hollywood would have something tasty, like.
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Spider-Man: No Way Home: Oscars and Scorcese, the fairground anything | COMICSBLOG.fr