Internet Movie Ratings

The Critic

I gave up my fight with Internet movie ratings today. No longer shall I pretend like they mean anything more than a very general good or bad.

My roommate and I watched Ed Wood, a film by Tim Burton starring Johnny Depp. It was decent, what I would consider a good movie; It’s current rating is #197 on IMDB’s coveted Top 250 list. 

It was good, but I doubt I would place this movie in my top 500. And what about The Godfather, The Godfather Part II, and One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, movies that I would call ok but nowhere near my Top 10 (IMDB’s rating places them #1, #3, and #7, respectively).

My point is that ratings are not reliable. IMDB rates these movies based on popular opinion. I asked myself an important question today: how valuable is popular opinion? Do I buy food based on popular opinion? Do I read books based on popular opinion?

No, I usually don’t (there are exceptions, of course). 

I personally like the old fashioned method of word-of-mouth. My friends, favorite artists, family, and trusted acquaintances tell me about a movie, I check it out. If I like it, I find out what else the artist has done, and so on. In our age of Internet, IMDB, and Netflix, it’s a bit quaint, I know, but it’s worked so far. 

As to the Internet and the convenience it affords, I have nothing but praise, I just don’t find Internet movie ratings very useful. 

(But I’ll be honest, there is a snob inside of me that doesn’t want anything to do with popular opinion. This snob sniffs at the idea of being led like a cow to the most popular _______, the highest ranked _______, or the Top _______. )

If you think a member of the snob family is residing in you, I cordially invite you to post this friendly eviction notice in/on your head:

Dear sir/madam,

I am afraid your snide remarks and pretentious manners have begun to disturb the neighbors. They have been complaining of you for some time. I had patiently hoped that my letters might dissuade your rather unseemly behavior, but since you have ignored my counsel, I am forced to no other measure than this official notice of eviction. In the words of the famous song,

You don’t have to go home but you can’t stay here.


_____________ (Insert your name here, and make sure to post it somewhere near the front of your head. I recommend permanent marker, if necessary).”

To recap, here’s my Sunday 2:00am in the morning advice:

-Use the ratings if you must, always skeptically, and never worrying if your favorite picks are not at the top.

-Kill the snob that says your opinion is better than everyone else’s. Remember that the snob is notorious for sudden re-surfacing. Be on your guard. 

-Enjoy the medium that is film. When done right, it is incredible.

And lastly, if you’ve got one, send a recommendation or two my way…



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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Um, no. The Godfather is teh awesome.

    I’m a snob and I’m pretty much okay with that 😉

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