The Good Old Days, When Things Were Not As Good

Critics are jaded out of nostalgia for when they were less jaded. A common criticism of critics is that they no longer seem to enjoy anything: every movie, every band, every game, every book is cynically ripped apart. But we are all critics – I mean, we all watch movies, listen to music, play games, and read books looking for something that we’ll enjoy, and are disappointed when they aren’t “good.” But we’ve all gotten jaded.

We compare things today with great things of the past, or of our past. We remember when we fell in love with a movie or book or band and most things now just don’t cut it. But have you watched your favorite old movies lately? I’ll bet if you watch the movies you used to love objectively, in a new and critical lens today, you won’t be that impressed.

Yes, part of it might be that they were new in the world back then: for example, The Matrix was the first movie to have bullet-time action scenes but now that every action movie has them it seems a lot less special. I think its more important, though, that they were new to us. Continue reading