Stand It Like a Man and Give Some Back: Darren Aronofsky Explains Why The Fountain Flopped
Normally Darren Aronofsky speaks words that make me think, or at the very least creates films with those qualities. In a recent interview though, Aronofsky demonstrated that even the most insightful of storytellers can have a shallow and petty side by shoving his head so far up his own ass that he could probably taste the cud his last hamburger chewed on the day it went down the chute.
Aronofsky exploded into this rant in an interview with The Playlist:
"Not only did she attack the film, she attacked me. People in social media attack you for everything you've done, that happens all the time. But a critic should be focused on what's at hand, not attack someone's career and say their past films are overrated and say they have no ability. She clearly had an issue with me as a person and what I was putting out there as my stories. So that bothered me. And so probably if I ever met her, it wouldn't be a good day."
I don't know, I'd say that a critic's place is exactly to argue such things as the fact that your other films are overrated or making a case that you have no ability. Hell, I don't even agree with those statements about Aronofsky, but I sure think they are well within the territory of the critic.
But as is always necessary, let's go to the tape and check what the offensive text of the review actually was. Leslie Felperin argued in Variety that the film "shows onscreen all the wear and tear of a personal project that has suffered from production fits and starts and reportedly has been cut down from a longer running time to a still tedious and repetitious hour and a half."
Seriously, that still has Aronofsky bitching in interviews six years later? Lighten up Francis. I trust that he's never been on the Internet, because that is about the most polite bad review I've ever read. It's certainly more polite than many I've written. Actually, I'm pretty sure that Felperin is being nicer than I've been in many positive reviews of movies I liked. Hell, our own Dan Carlson, in his overall very positive review of The Fountain did acknowledge that "the film still feels like it's skating on the surface instead of plumbing any kind of emotional depths for the answers to life's big questions."
Watch it Dan, if you ever run into Aronofsky at a convention, he's going to cut your face.
And as a mandatory embed, everyday I'm more convinced that the world would be a better place if Al Swearengen gave this speech to every cocksucker every damned day: