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Dear Hollywood,

I have been a faithful lover of your product for 40+ years now. From grand sweeping epics like Gone with the Wind, to the timeless animation of most anything Disney, to adventures in space with light sabers or robots or even very scary Aliens. I have laughed with icons such as Gene Wilder, Bette Midler, and George Burns.  I’ve been terrified by Jaws, Alien, and Poltergeist.  I have been caught up in timeless romances with The Notebook, Pride & Prejudice, and oh yes, Gone with the Wind (that one really covers a lot of ground).GWTW

You have given us heroes of all shapes, sizes and colors. You have countered every one with villains of every conceivable nature. You have taught us to dream bigger, push farther, and stretch our imaginations and hearts to the breaking point. We laugh, cry, scream in fright and sometimes anger – right along with the characters you send us. Occasionally you even change our very lives because of a few hours spent in the dark, staring at that alluring silver screen.

But lately I find myself disappointed on a consistent basis. What’s the deal Hollywood?

Let’s start with this – Why do you feel it necessary to rehash timeless classics?  The Amityville Horror, Carrie, Footloose, Ghostbusters – the originals captivated us, told the story very well, and didn’t need to be remade.  If the original was a success, and no one was clamoring for a redo, why go through the trouble? All you’re doing is trivializing the epic-ness of the first one.


Why drag out a series ad-nauseum? Nightmare on Elm Street, Saw, X-Men, Jurassic Park, Fast & Furious.   They all get to the point where they are entirely too predictable – same heroes, different villains, someone important dies to shake things up, good guys still win and we’ve set up the next movie.  We loved them in the beginning, but you drag them out to the point that it’s just no fun anymore. Stop it!

What happened to epic sagas? Again I defer to GWTW as my standby measure.  Avatar was on that scale – lord knows that movie needed an intermission. But it seems this art-form of grand story telling is lost and that’s a shame.

Do you ever listen to public opinion or screen movies before releasing them? My guess here is no. If you did you would not have released the monumental disappointment known as Superman vs Batman, Dawn of Justice.  I think I just threw up a little thinking about it. I won’t fault your cast choices (especially Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman). But the lack of story line, the over use of flashbacks (we ALL KNOW what’s happened with Kent and Wayne to make them who they are!), and the warped portrayal of Lex Luthor with an almost Riddler-esque quality. Not to mention that bizarre monster thing you threw in. Geez – 2 hours of setup rehashing things we already knew and swirling miscommunication to get to 5 minutes of action for everyone to kiss and make up at the end.   And the haphazard way you tossed in the future members of the Justice League – did you forget they were supposed to be included?  If you had screened it before final cutting, you could have made some serious improvements and saved the audience about 40 minutes of lost life-span.

I think opinion polls or test audiences would also help steer you away from failures like Winter’s Tale, Pompeii, The Single Mom’s Club, Cowboys vs Aliens, Driven, Gigli, Pixels, and Zoom. These are just a handful of the bombs that have cost far more to make than they could ever hope to bring in.  Who approves the budget for these? Who thought any of these were a good idea?

Do the people who adapt books to screenplays ever actually read the book? While The Notebook book1was phenomenal, I’m specifically referring to Starship Troopers. Other than the title and character names, NOTHING in this movie reflected the plot, ideals, or storyline of the book. It’s a fantastic book but no one wants to read it anymore because they associate it with that lame excuse for a movie. The fact that there were subsequent really really bad films to make a series only nauseates me further.  Other shameful adaptations include War of the Worlds, The Great Gatsby, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, and the Harry Potter books. C’mon guys! Read the book first!!

And on a personal note, for the love of little kittens, please STOP rehashing comic book characters; Spiderman, Batman, Catwoman, Superman, Fantastic Four, even the Joker!! Leave these guys alone and move on to someone else.

I could add another page on remakes and rehashing that is Star Wars, but I digress. I could ask why we no longer expect our actors to be gentleman with style or ladies of elegance and wit. Seriously, name me one current A-list actress that can act, sing, and dance backwards in high heels? *(update, I stand corrected – Emma Stone).

Dearest Hollywood, I still want to be captivated, terrified, enraptured, romanced, and taken for a white-knuckled ride. I still have faith in your ability to do all this and more. You have shown me greatness, sent me home laughing, put me on the edge of my chair, or other times left me too stunned to leave my seat.  Maybe it’s time for some house cleaning – obviously you have too many non-movie lovers making the decisions out there. I’m tired of wasting my time and money watching substandard actors making banal and clichéd films. You are the Motion-Picture Industry – it’s high time you started acting like it again.ginger1