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Not only are movies losing all of what made them beautiful (which I don’t feel like getting into), but in addition to videogames imitating movie structure and movies imitating videogames rendition of movie structure (alright, I got into one example), now we have modern, moviemakers resorting to the style of smartphone movie-editing apps. And I’m talking about the big dogs. The mini-moguls of Hollywood.

The brief slow-motion ramp downs we (you) use to video your son doing a flip into a pool, or the YouTube clips of kids bopping ping pong balls off of grandmothers’ foreheads and into a plastic, red cups, are now taking place of creativity in the biggest budget movies currently out.

The Matrix and 300 took the martial arts/western slow motion sequences to new levels. Barnyard is an example of the technique being overused near the beginning of the animation film craze. Zoolander, Deadpool, and Over the Hedge tried some new stuff.

But never have I seen what’s happening today, where big budget films resort to smartphone slow-mo tricks for little-to-no reason. (WW84, Stuber, Cruella, and Black Widow literally got me scratching my head out of boredom and confusion.)

I finally had to write about this, because the best example was during last night’s viewing of The Dead Don’t Die. Mid-camera motion, we slow down to look at a dead kid who was already at the center of the frame in a tight medium shot. I want to blame someone, but I don’t know if it’s the director, studio, editor, producer …

For now, I’ll blame myself, for at first being mesmerized by my son’s phone when videoing him doing a backflip in slow-mo.

[Side note: Don’t forget you can rent DVDs from the library for those hard-to-find movies.]
Dan Jones

Author Dan Jones

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