Of all the varieties of irritating comment out there, the absolute most annoying has to be "Why can't you just watch the movie for what it is??? Why can't you just enjoy it? Why do you have to analyze it???"
If you have posted such a comment, or if you are about to post such a comment, here or anywhere else, let me just advise you: Shut up. Shut the fuck up. Shut your goddamn fucking mouth. SHUT. UP.
First of all, when we analyze art, when we look for deeper meaning in it, we are enjoying it for what it is...
this is an attitude -- not the one that the redoubtable josh wimmer is expressing, the one he is railing against -- that i encounter all the everloving time and i don't think i've ever been able to argue against it quite this cogently. probably because i was too mad.
the entire purpose of creating and sharing art, for whatever definition of "art" one employs, is to say something about other things. this can be complicated or very, very simple, but when you put something of yours out there, you are starting a conversation. and you might not like all of the response, but that doesn't absolve you from dealing with it. it doesn't remove whatever consequences result from what you say.
the first step in effective activism is getting people who don't want to acknowledge this -- the fundamental responsibility of something as simple as having a conversation -- to accept that the discussion has already begun.
and we can't take for granted that it's something we've already accomplished.