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David Cronenberg Does Not Like Superhero Movies; Says ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ Is “Boring”

Written by on August 15, 2012 

But is anybody surprised David Cronenberg won’t buy an Avengers toy?

The master of making you utter “gross!” while working your brain scoffed at Hollywood’s favorite creative well in an interview with NextMovie, using a positive referral to superhero films as the chance to express some frank and unpopular stances.

There’s no point in paraphrasing or cutting around a block of text this good, so read at your pleasure (or ire):

“I don’t think they are making them an elevated art form. I think it’s still Batman running around in a stupid cape. I just don’t think it’s elevated. Christopher Nolan‘s best movie is Memento, and that is an interesting movie. I don’t think his Batman movies are half as interesting though they’re 20 million times the expense. What he is doing is some very interesting technical stuff, which, you know, he’s shooting IMAX and in 3-D. That’s really tricky and difficult to do. I read about it in ‘American Cinematography Magazine,’ and technically, that’s all very interesting. The movie, to me, they’re mostly boring.”

Cronenberg, almost sensing whatever backlash is bound to arise from those statements, said his horror features — works which, on the surface, are often disregarded for being silly — are, in fact, art. Comic books, on the other hand…

“[A] superhero movie, by definition, you know, it’s comic book. It’s for kids. It’s adolescent in its core. That has always been its appeal, and I think people who are saying, you know, Dark Knight Rises is, you know, ‘supreme cinema art,’ I don’t think they know what the f**k they’re talking about.”

I don’t agree with that aspect of his argument — not to, God forbid, get on some nerd soapbox, but “Watchmen and other works of this nature, etc.” — so he’s wrong there. Fine. (The accidental mention of 3D has no standing on the nature or basis of his argument, either. Stop with that counter-defense.)

All that being said: It would be easy for me to wholeheartedly ignore if Cronenberg‘s new movie, the adaptation of a novel, wasn’t better than The Dark Knight Rises. Only, it is. Christopher Nolan‘s final go-round with Batman is both immensely enjoyable and an impressive feat of filmmaking which contains genuine emotion, but, discounting the fact that it’s a very different sort of picture, I think it’s perfectly reasonable to enjoy both. He just sees things differently and has a great way of expressing it.

Are you angered by Cronenberg’s statements on the whole genre?

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