DANIEL’s review published on Letterboxd:
Guy Maddin makes the kind of movies I recommend to my friends and they go “I didn’t get it” and then recommend I watch some movie with Chris Pine in it back. I’ve accepted that’s just part of life, like people finding a popcorn comfort in the bland nihilism of a Palahniuk novel, in how Harry Potter movies are “good enough”, how airport fiction sells out the new postmodern concept novel 100:1. it’s just the way the world is built. genius is specific. accessibility is not.
some people argue that true genius is being able to communicate an idea to everyone on a level playing field, but I think that’s simplifying everything to a lowest common denominator. some genius should disturb, should shock, should not make sense in the time you view it. incoherence isn’t a sign of brilliance, but sometimes, it takes a long time before you “get” the message, because you weren’t in the place to appreciate the art for what it was, in that moment.
I’m not saying every hack who shoots in black and white and has grainy wide shots is a genius — in a way, Human Centipede 2 is a deliberate refutation of that idea — I’m just saying a lot of what gets dismissed as arthouse pretentious babble just makes more sense if you’re in the right place for what they were trying to show you.