Last night I posted links to outstanding recent examples of blogger criticism, struck yet again by how thoroughly some bloggers are outperforming their counterparts in print. Now this morning I discover Tim Hulsey’s fantastic post on Brokeback Mountain that has determined me to see the film. Here’s a clip that gets to the heart of the matter:
For most of the film, Lee seems content to exploit and subvert convention, while subtly teaching his audiences new and more humane ways to experience cinema. In the closing scenes, however, Brokeback Mountain careens into what for most American audiences will be emotional terra incognita, with grief too deep for words or tears. In a way, the film is designed to prepare us for these final moments, when we’re compelled to identify with a form of love that most of us have been conditioned not to take seriously. The film is a plea for empathy, not just in society or politics but in the American cinema as a whole–and it is in this last regard that Brokeback may be most revolutionary.
You should read the whole beautifully written, assiduously contextualized piece. Very little in current newspaper or magazine film criticism is the equal of Tim’s work here or, indeed, the reviews I linked to in the post immediately below. I find rampant blogger triumphalism just as annoying as the next person, but to say that blogs like My Stupid Dog are lapping the print media seems to me to be simply stating the facts.