Can Vertigo Survive Being Named the Best Picture Ever in the Backlash Era?
I write at the Daily Beast
Over the past few years, the world has marveled at the Internet’s powerful ability to bring despots and the mighty to their knees by giving voice to the masses. But today, the Internet did the unthinkable, shaking up the modern world’s most remote and impenetrable of preserves: the exclusive enclave of film criticism….
But this change only demonstrates how the job of professional critics has switched in the Backlash Era. No longer are the mavens of establishment journalism here to dictate to the people, but now, they serve to reflect the people’s will. It has been noted how often these days critics seem afraid to pan films destined to rule the box office. Many saw in the salivating raves given to Marvel’s otherwise workaday superhero film The Avengers a desire not to tangle with the mob.
Now that fear of the mob has ascended to the most venerable circle of criticism. It is not insignificant that Sight and Sound chose to reveal the results of the poll not as has been customary for the better part of a century, in their August issue, but on their Twitter feed.
As the Backlash Era reaps, so shall it sow. Vertigo better sleep with one eye open.