On this, the last day before Christmas, everyone is scrambling to submit their last minute gift wishes, and with 2016 just around the corner, we’re looking ahead and taking advantage of Santa’s open lines. We asked some of our contributors and our Twitter followers what their Christmas wishes were for the short term future of film. Below, you’ll find some of our answers, and feel free to share yours:
Our Christmas Wishes
Jack Godwin’s Christmas Wish – Learned Lessons
I hope that popular cinema in 2016 avoids the mistakes of 2015, and learns from the successes of the films that have truly resonated with audiences. There’s a difference between taking on lessons from these films and simply aping their more superficial qualities. Before making a deal with Marvel, the expanded universe Sony were chasing with their Amazing Spider-Man movies copied the inter-connectedness of the MCU without understanding what makes it work. I hope that next year we don’t see a misunderstanding of what made Mad Max: Fury Road compelling, or what made Furious 7 an international hit. The answer isn’t to throw money at any established brand, or insist on gruff men driving at high speeds, but to give your audience diversity and emotional stakes to the action. And most importantly, allow a particular creative vision to flourish and imbue the film with personality.
Sean W. Fallon’s Christmas Wish – Originality
I wish for more originality. That isn’t to say I don’t want more sequels or remakes or whatever, but if we’re going to go back to old wells, I’d like to see it done with passion and a drive to show us something new from something old. I guess what I’m saying is simply this: In 2016 I want more Creed and less Jurassic World.
David Shreve, Jr.’s Christmas Wish – Guillermo Del Toro Sequels
It’s hard to say what it is that inhibits Guillermo Del Toro’s fanship and box office success from reaching the same height as his vision and filmmaking skill, but something has stopped him dead in his tracks in the middle of two of his most imaginative projects. The Hellboy series sits one movie short of being the single best trilogy in film history (in my opinion [which is fact]) and Pacific Rim, in spite of being one of the most gleeful movie experiences of the current decade, can’t get traction on a sequel. 2015 has been one of the biggest box office years in history and neither Universal nor Warner Bros is holding out a tin cup and begging this holiday season, so maybe some of their riches might be tossed in the direction of Hollywood’s most gifted blockbuster-level artist?
Richard Newby’s Christmas Wish – Outrage Culture Has Got to Go
The actual critical component and analysis of film can be just as interesting as the film itself—an extension of the cinematic experience that has power to shape and re-shape our thoughts. But if there’s one thing that’s the most damaging to the future of film and film criticism it is outrage culture. This year I’ve become increasingly aware of how easy it is for people to get swept up in negativity, to feed it to each other in heaping doses, with little context, accuracy, or meaning. This level of outrage has become more than just incessant social media reactions, it has infiltrated our film journalism in the form of think- pieces, and lists of reasons why this or that film gets “it” completely wrong, and the majority of these reactions are published before the film under debate has even been released or had time to settle. There will always be bad movies, and poor filmmaking and casting decisions, but to work so diligently to build up a case against a film we’ve yet to see, or to simply regurgitate the same criticism repeatedly, damages our ability to look at films with an optimism for the art form and find meaning in them. It’s our own egos that feed outrage, a need to feel right early and unquestionably, but this only creates an echo-chamber that drowns out conversation and any real insight. In the context of both big and small-scale films, there’s been a lot of unnecessary noise and rash reactions this year, so my hope for 2016 is that we can replace outrage with patience and consideration.
Diego Crespo’s Christmas Wish – More Great Horror Movies
I’m not the big horror movie fan around these parts. That title falls to talented writers like David Shreve. And yet, this might be the first year where I put four horror movies on my personal “Best of 2015” list. What the hell? I’m just as shocked as you are (pretend to be shocked). From the western frontier where Kurt Russell fights a band of troglodytes to the isolated snowed-in family home being attacked by killer gingerbread men, it has been a fantastic year for scary movies. Even M. Night Shyamalan returned to form with his semi-adaptation of Hansel & Gretel (because that is absolutely what The Visit is). There are maybe a handful of movies I enjoyed as much as Krampus, but I find myself aching for that movie to hit home video so I may place it alongside my other unorthodox Christmas classics. I don’t know what the future holds in store for my relationship with horror movies, but I’ll be ready and waiting.
Your Christmas Wishes
#2016 Well written women leads. More PoC in lead roles. A bisexual woman who isn’t a slut. More star wars. More Furiosa. @WeTalkMovies
— Emerald Williams (@emeraldleighw) December 23, 2015
Harmony Korine makes the next Iron Man movie #XmasWishAE
— St. Nick Issac (@nickissac) December 23, 2015
@WeTalkMovies more new and interesting characters in established franchises (Kylo Ren, Furiosa)
— Simon Todd Taylor (@simontoddtaylor) December 23, 2015
@WeTalkMovies um….less shitty comedies. Definitely less shitty comedies. Only good comedies from here on out.
— Sheila (@giddy1313) December 23, 2015
— Nate Ruegger (@NateRuegger) December 23, 2015
— El Dude-mas (@RCDAguiar) December 24, 2015
— Barbara Kirk (@barbara19261) December 23, 2015
@WeTalkMovies more films with realistic dialogue/story and less films with little to no purpose
— Queen of Hate (@chelsealynn66) December 23, 2015
Featured Image: Love Actually, Universal Pictures