I still find the story, “Movies Try to Escape Cultural Irrelevance,” by Michael Cieply in The New York Times an interesting one. In general, the story is about the movie industry trying to remain culturally — and, more likely, financially — relevant.
In the press recently there have been some comments and debates (if you want to call them that) about the intersections of documentary, money, and — arguably — power. Michael Moore is suing the Weinsteins for $2.7 million with the reservation of changing that amount after further investigation. His Fahrenheit 9/11 grossed $119 million at the box office, and Moore took home about $19.8 million from it. He seems to think he should get more than that.
While much theoretical work has been done on the idea of spectacle, I usually think of the term “spectacle” as a sight that is visually interesting for the visual’s sake, and not too much more. In other words, a spectacle is a sight to see.
First, let me say that I admire all that Oprah has accomplished and the contributions she has made to the world, but I am not part of her core audience. Not even close. But my concerns here are for the documentary form and the impacts this “club” might have, and it is at that point where I start. …