My Point: Excuses

I forgot to include my original point in the post about movies and videogames. It was about the excuses we're hearing. Hollywood has been trying to pretend that the reason people aren't going to the theatres is because of the rising cost of gas, the economy, online piracy, nice weather, and other entertainment options. Well, I certainly agree with the last item, but the real reason -- one they're too afraid to admit -- is that the movies aren't worth seeing.

I'm not one of the people who find movies to be too expensive. Sure, they're 50-70% more expensive than they were a decade ago, but a decade ago we didn't have 1080p digital theatres, nice reclining seats, and incredible surround sound with stadium seating. I'm fine with the cost. $9 for 2 hours of escape? Sounds fair to me. But only if the movie is compelling. We're not sheep (anymore) and aren't going to just go and see everything. Movies must do more than stimulate our eyes and ears -- it must also stir our minds and hearts. And redundant sequels and pointless action flicks do not do this.

And you'll find the same excuses being flung around in the videogame industry. Companies have been blaming the relative drop in sales of late on the economy, pirated copies, alternative forms of entertainment, nice weather, and even on consoles that aren't even out yet. Now I agree that the economy does play a factor here, as most videogames retail new for $50 and that is a hard pill to swallow for many, but primarily it's been about the games not being worth our time. I can't tell you how many games I paid $50 for, played for 2 hours and threw it on the shelf in disgust. Oddly enough, most of the games I've enjoyed the most over the past 6 months have retailed for under $40 brand new.

But I don't mind paying $50 for a videogame. So long as it doesn't suck.

Game makers and movie houses will find millions of Americans with disposable income looking to spend their money if the product is worth it. No matter the cost. But gone are the days where we buy everything thrown our way. The quicker everyone understands this and accepts it, the sooner we can all get what we want.


Criscipline said...

Hey, I'm pretty souped for Corpse Bride and Excorcism of Emily Rose this fall. Oh, and don't forget HP & The Goblet of Fire to be relased 11/18. (I'll be there at midnight.) I see your point though. None of those are original. One is based off an amazing book so it's cool but a book nonetheless. One is basically a sequel to Nightmare Before Christmas. And one is a scary true story but still based off an original.
I'll let you know what I end up renting Friday. Any suggestions? I haven't seen anything really.

Doug Walsh said...

If you haven't already seen Swimming Pool, I'd recommend it totally. Also, the same thing goes with Life is Beautiful. I know it won an Oscar several years ago, but I only got around to watching it recently and it's easily one of the best movies I've ever seen.