Saturday, October 11, 2008

Indie Cred Now Equals Indie Dread

Ann Hornaday of the Washington Post has a most excellent article about how indie films--once known for their unique voice and style--are falling into the same formulaic cliches that plague their big-budget studio counterparts:

"Call it "There Will Be Hamburger Phones": More than 20 years after American independent cinema entered its latest Golden Age, what started as a fiercely autonomous cinematic response to Hollywood and its dominant genres has become a genre itself. And like all genres, the indie aesthetic is rife with its own versions of the hackneyed conventions, tired tropes and cliched themes that weigh down the most predictable action spectacle or by-the-numbers rom-com."
She takes on Napoleon Dynamite and Juno in her astute and insightful critique of what used to be the way to escape the usual paint-by-number drivel.

I've nothing more to add other than "What she said" and read the article!


  1. Yeah, I agree, the article makes a good point. I mean, what's so cutting edge or risk-taking about Juno or Little Miss Sunshine? Not much.

  2. It's not necessarily a bad thing to NOT be cutting edge (or as we like to say in Hollyweird, "edgy"), but my issue is the trying so HARD to be quirky and offbeat.

    My most favorite moments in Juno weren't the painfully hip dialogue (Honest to blog! Who @#$% says that?!!!), but the more realistic incoherence of Michael Cera's character when he tells Juno, "And don't tell me it was because you were bored. There was plenty to watch on TV!"

    Now it's all "Cue offbeat montage to hip emo band music."