As a movie viewer, reviewer, and critical watcher, I find myself so often confronted with the problem of expectations, assumptions, and outcomes when going in to see a film, an issue I've talked about on this blog before, most notably in my post regarding my conflicting feelings for I Am Love. However, the problem here isn't so much a purposeful act of contrarianism, but self-imposed limitations in the range of films that I watch, and that I want to watch.
For example, when I see a trailer for a big-budget superhero movie or a goofy family film, I'm not nearly as excited or intrigued as when I see a trailer for a foreign artsy drama or a quirky indie comedy, mentally proclaiming that the former "are just not my kinds of movies".
The thing is though, when movies like the aforementioned I Am Love and other films I less than loved such as Precious and Up in the Air (all of which I was really excited for) fall flat in my estimation, while movies like Kung Fu Panda and Thor end up being highly entertaining and enjoyable, I can't help but question my own presumed taste (even if the formula does work the other way around, with many movies that I knew I would hate absolutely living up to their expectation).
The most recent example, and the one that prompted me to reflect on this topic, is Jurassic Park, which I finally saw for the first time only a couple of days ago. I was expecting to enjoy it, sure (it's not so popular for nothing, right?) but I wasn't expecting at all to love it as much as I did. I thought that there was no way that a movie about dinosaurs on an island could be that good and thus I was rather surprised when I found myself absolutely falling head over heels for it.
It's a problem that I'm not sure really has any solution, besides perhaps toning down my own snobbery and keeping an open mind to even the most unappealing of movies. That's not to say that anyone should go see everything because it "might be good" - I mean, that would be impossible! But, that perhaps good cinema can exist in many different realms and by widening our horizons you can get the best of everything.
Of course, I'm still young, and my tastes are still developing. What I find entertaining now I may find detestable later on - who knows what my cinematic tastes will be like in one, five, ten, twenty years - but I hope I can always examine myself and that I don't get in the way of my own moviegoing experiences.
P.S. This post obviously has nothing to do with the ever polarizing Juno, but the quote seemed appropriate.
Do you find yourself surprised by your own tastes and expectations? Are your tastes still developing? Love Jurassic Park? Hate Juno? Sound off below!