David Cronenberg Clarifies TDKR Diss: It's ALL CBMs He Feels Can't Be "High Cinematic Art"

David Cronenberg Clarifies TDKR Diss: It's ALL CBMs He Feels Can't Be "High Cinematic Art"

You may remember a while ago the director seemed to scoff a bit (well, actually a lot) at the suggestion that Christopher Nolan's Batman movies should be considered "high art". Well now he's explained himself to The Playlist, but I'm not sure he'll be calming the fanboys down any!..

Back in August during an interview with Next Movie, David Cronenberg revealed his outright dislike for comic book movies. The director singled out Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy in particular, after the interviewer brought them up as examples of how the genre could be elevated. "I think people who are saying, you know, 'Dark Knight Rises' is, you know, supreme cinema art, I don't think they know what the f**k they're talking about," said Cronenberg, who then admitted to enjoying Christopher Nolan's other movies - Memento especially, but continued to say he finds his Batman movies "boring", and that at the end of the day, despite any technical brilliance, they are "still Batman running around in a stupid cape.". Well, this understandably ruffled a few feathers among the fanboys, so when Cronenberg was asked to clarify his comments by The Playlist, he responded..

"What I was saying was that a comic book movie is really a comic book movie. Comic books were -- especially those comic books which I was raised on (I loved Captain Marvel) -- created for adolescents and they have a core that is adolescent," he elaborated. "To me, that limits the discourse of your movie if you're basing it accurately on that, and you cannot rise to the highest level of cinematic art. That's my take on it. I went on to say that, of course, technically they can be incredibly interesting, since there are very clever people making the movie and of course have a lot of money they are throwing at it. But creatively, artistically, they are incredibly limited. It got bent out of shape that I was dissing Christopher Nolan, which just wasn't the case."

Well that's alright then! Personally I think it's kinda refreshing to hear this type of honesty - even when I don't agree with it. Some people just don't like comic book movies and that's that. For the full article click on back to The Playlist at the link below.

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Mark Cassidy
Member Since 11/9/2008
Filed Under "Batman" 1/2/2013 Source: Via The Playlist
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cmay13 - 1/2/2013, 11:43 AM
He's just mad that he doesn't have any oscar nominations and Nolan does
GoILL - 1/2/2013, 11:43 AM
I always took what he said as a diss to all cbm's not just the Nolan ones, you had guys like Intruder trying to spin it like he was just talking about TDKR.
StormLoganSummers - 1/2/2013, 11:44 AM
I still don't know who the [frick] this guy is.
AnonymousGuy - 1/2/2013, 11:45 AM
He's obviously never seen the likes of Watchmen and Nemesis, which are definitely not "for adolescents." lol!
scarecrow007 - 1/2/2013, 11:45 AM
That's just his opinion.
invalensname5 - 1/2/2013, 11:45 AM
He made a comic book movie! A History of Violence. Tool.
RorMachine - 1/2/2013, 11:47 AM
Yes he did, which kinda renders his rant...stupid.
CaptainObvious - 1/2/2013, 11:47 AM
Yes, all comic books are strictly for children. That's why we have Watchmen, The Dark Knight Returns, The Walking Dead, anything by Mark Millar, and so forth.

His comments are just as insulting and patronizing as they were five months ago.
RorMachine - 1/2/2013, 11:48 AM
..although I'm sure if pressed about that he'd say he just means superhero comic book movies
StrangerX - 1/2/2013, 11:51 AM
Well that was stupid!!
prettynuclear2 - 1/2/2013, 11:51 AM
Well he's right. CBMs are limited to hero stories.
invalensname5 - 1/2/2013, 11:54 AM
I like Cronenberg. But he makes schlockey horror movies. I don't know where he gets off making a comment like this.

Is The Fly supreme cinema art? Coz, it's a guy dressed in a fly costume.... TDKR is much 'artier' than that!
DioFoRio - 1/2/2013, 11:55 AM
Road to Perdition. Ghost World. A History of Violence.....Man-Thing.
DioFoRio - 1/2/2013, 11:56 AM
How many different ways has Lone Wolf and Cub been adapted(stolen)?
RorMachine - 1/2/2013, 11:56 AM
Actually, I think The Fly is as high as cinematic art gets! A masterpiece.
orpheus - 1/2/2013, 11:58 AM
Comic fans get so stupidly touchy when their favorite CBMs aren't recognized in the light they think they should be. I loved DKR, it's not high art, anyone who thinks it is doesn't know crap about art. That's not an insult, just a fact, DKR doesn't have to be. However, Cronenberg's films are not what I could consider high art - and they don't need to be, either. That's not an insult, unless he intends them to be high art. I've seen Dead Ringers, Dead Zone, eXistenZ, History of Violence (terrible), and A Dangerous Method. He's got some good ones, and some not so good ones. Let's not flip out because someone isn't sucking DKR or Avenger's D.
csdot - 1/2/2013, 11:59 AM
don't get why people keep mentioning History of Violence, he is obviously referring to superheroes (specifically Batman) not comic books as a medium. dude is a genius and has made some of my favorite films so I give him a pass on not being into CBMs. theyre not for everyone.
CrimsonReign - 1/2/2013, 11:59 AM
Funny, I like Cronenberg's films as an adolescent and now...not so much.
invalensname5 - 1/2/2013, 11:59 AM
I don't disagree Ror, it's a fantastic film. But it's in the vein of a b-horror movie, and schlockey (again, not a bad thing). TDKR had panache, style, gravitas... a slow build-up hated by many, but I loved it's tone and atmosphere.
I bet Cronenberg hasn't even seen it!
thanos83 - 1/2/2013, 12:00 PM

"What I was saying was that a comic book movie is really a comic book movie. Comic books were -- especially those comic books which I was raised on (I loved Captain Marvel) -- created for adolescents and they have a core that is adolescent," he elaborated. "To me, that limits the discourse of your movie if you're basing it accurately on that, and you cannot rise to the highest level of cinematic art.

Hmm mm, A fairly disagreeable, yet in many respects a piercingly honest and quantifiable observation of the mainstream American comics industry. Sadly though i wish hes was more acutely aware that the industry as a whoal has made many great strides to becoming true art on all fronts (Story telling,visual (composition,aesthetic complexity ETC:) within the last 30 years.

And Jim Starlin's Run on Captain Marvel Was amazing(if that's what he's referring to)
csdot - 1/2/2013, 12:00 PM
he isnt saying his own films are high art and comic book movies arent, he just said he doesnt understand why people act like TDKR is high art. its not, its a well made genre film.
thanos83 - 1/2/2013, 12:02 PM
Yet one must also ask..What is true "Art"
orpheus - 1/2/2013, 12:03 PM
I want to clarify by saying DKR and DK were "Artfully done", but not high art.
Azazel1 - 1/2/2013, 12:03 PM
I find a lot of Cronenburg movies to also be boring and or stupid case in point

Dead Ringers-stupid and boring

A Dangerous Method-Stupid and boring

Naked Lunch-Incredibly stupid and boring

His best film was History of Violence which is a CBM.


*Eastern Promises was also awesome
ArtisticErotic - 1/2/2013, 12:04 PM
I'll admit Rises and other CBMS are not perfect but they've progressed a lot over the years.

But oh well you can't please everybody.
shamo - 1/2/2013, 12:06 PM
so, in his opinion, what a character chooses to wear dictates its legitimacy as artwork? a history of violence is fine because Tom didn't wear a costume but Nolan's Batman is wrong because his characters do?

foolish statement from a great filmmaker.
Tevii - 1/2/2013, 12:07 PM
Well Nolan's batman movies are not art I can agree with that. But to clump all Cbms into the same category is ridiculous
Orphix - 1/2/2013, 12:08 PM
I'm a little bit miffed at what Cronenburg has to say about CBMs. Not because he obviously isn't a fan of Batman but simply because has taken the b-movie, schlock-body horror genre and raised it into something truly artistic with so much to say.

Find his opinion on CBMs a bit shortsighted. Surely they have potential to be 'high art' too?
thanos83 - 1/2/2013, 12:09 PM
Too bad well more than likley never see a eastern promise's 2..there's a script by steve Knight Ready to go..but Focas features wont "greenlight" it
StarkAnthony - 1/2/2013, 12:10 PM
Just because something started aimed at adolescents does not mean that it can't become more. There have been many comics that are adult in content, themes, and imagery
DrDoom - 1/2/2013, 12:11 PM
Well he can be a bitter old tart all he wants. Superhero movies can be high art.
Equivocal - 1/2/2013, 12:14 PM
truth to be told;

batman rises is NOT supreme art

it's just High quality cameras and somber tone, with splashes of good intentions in a very long overrated and boring movie.... !

but again, this is just an opinion.
prettynuclear2 - 1/2/2013, 12:15 PM
The problem is that superheroes can't be anything but good. In movies like Cosmopolis, eXistenZ the protagonists are clearly murderers but you empathize with them. This is more interesting than a hero who saves everyone.
TheFascinatingMan - 1/2/2013, 12:16 PM
Cue the Nolanites...

Oh wait.
jazzman - 1/2/2013, 12:19 PM
guys common sense he is talking about superhero comic book movies.
shadyginzo - 1/2/2013, 12:21 PM
only a sith deals in absolutes.
SageMode - 1/2/2013, 12:24 PM
Oh well, good for him (for what it's not worth). NEXT!!?
TheRock234 - 1/2/2013, 12:26 PM
Watchmen, Kingdom Come, V for Vendetta, The Dark Knight Returns, all of these books Cronenberg needs to check out and say that cmbs are for adolescents
SWelch - 1/2/2013, 12:29 PM
The funny thing about him directing History of Violence a CBM is that I rad an article once and they were interviewing him and when the interviewer asked him about the GN he didn't even know the script was based on a GN.
lntrn8 - 1/2/2013, 12:31 PM
reminds me of a concept called "intellectual masturbation"

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