A: Are you serious with that bullshit? From Film.com:

“A superhero movie, by definition, you know, it’s comic book. It’s for kids. It’s adolescent in its core,” explains Cronenberg. “That has always been its appeal, and I think people who are saying ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ is, you know, supreme cinema art, I don’t think they know what the f**k they’re talking about.”

The suggestion that directors like Christopher Nolan have elevated the genre doesn’t resonate with Cronenberg:

“I think it’s still Batman running around in a stupid cape … Christopher Nolan’s best movie is ‘Memento,’ and that is an interesting movie. I don’t think his Batman movies are half as interesting, though they’re 20 million times the expense. What he is doing is some very interesting technical stuff, which, you know, he’s shooting IMAX and in 3-D. That’s really tricky and difficult to do. I read about it in ‘American Cinematography Magazine,’ and technically, that’s all very interesting. The movies, to me, they’re mostly boring.”

So now you know how David Cronenberg, director of Cosmopolis, A Dangerous Method, A History of Violence, eXistenZ, etc., feels about superhero movies in general and The Dark Knight Rises in particular. DO YOU HAVE ANY MORE QUESTIONS?

Comments (64)
  1. Ok, this is crass and rude, but whateves. Fuck that garbage, Cronenberg. Also, Nolan didn’t use 3D.

  2. Did Lars Von Trier like The Avengers? What about David Lynch?

    • I want David Lynch to make a 60s Adam West Batman movie so bad. And I don’t mean Lynch tries to recapture the spirit of 60s Batman. I mean Lynch uses it as a visual and thematic template, but then makes WHATEVER the fuck he wants.

  3. Do you think it’s more accurate to describe you as “pretentious”, or “elitist”?

    • While I don’t agree with Cronenberg (entirely — Bale’s Batman voice is fuckdiculously goofy), there’s nothing elitist or pretentious about pointing out that Nolan’s films, for all of their technical prowess and mostly well-executed acting, are at their core super hero films. And super heroes channel a certain simplified adolescent longing for heroes, justice and adventure.

      • Just a thought, (seriously, just a thought — like I’ve been thinking about this) but you, like us all, think Bale’s Batman voice is kind of silly, and I kept thinking, “Doesn’t Nolan know this? I mean, if he thought Bale’s Batman voice was silly, wouldn’t he have corrected it?” and then I’m thinking, because this is all a thought, that it is due to the suit, the teflon or carbon fiber or what-have-you that surrounds his neck pushes his Adam’s apple back and he has to sound groggy, or whatever. I think it wasn’t intentional, and that it could have been fixed but because of the realistic nature of the films, they wanted it to be that way.

        Another thought is: Abed’s “I’m Batman” is spot on Bale Batman. And I laugh every time I think of it.

  4. Remember that time A History of Violence was a comic book?

  5. Cronenberg is my hero. Someone post a gif from Brood where the chick picks up one of the fetus sacks on the outside of her body and sinks her teeth in to it and all the black blood oozes out. I love me some Cronenberg and now that he is calling “B.S.” on that bat-man hype is some radness.

    • Your gif, as requested:

    • Seriously. The man speaks the truth. If I could, I’d post a picture of Marilyn Chambers’s armpit vagina from Rabid. But, anyway, these Batman movies ARE boring and the new one is the worst of the lot. Although, for some weird reason, it’s the only one I didn’t fall asleep during. But, I was close. The theater was just really cold.

      • nobody ever talks about how totally boring those movies are, Christian Bale moping around and talking for 80% of the movie does not make this a serious art film, it makes a boring dreary “serious” movie with 20% action scenes that are choppy edited and awful

  6. I would like to ask where he gets his ideas.

  7. Is there some requirement that film directors have to be unlikable fucktards?

    • It is enough to make our heads explode [insert exploding head gif from Cronenberg's Scanners, a movie about people who have super mind powers they can use to make other peoples' heads explode, which is NOT cartoony because there are NO capes.]

  8. He might come off as very very unlikable here, but have you guys seen Videodrome? It’s great! really great!

  9. Maybe David Cronenberg is actually Batman in real life and he is trying to throw us off the scent?

  10. He’s also wrong about Memento being Christopher Nolan’s best movie. The Prestige is better.

  11. Cronenberg pulls a copy of Persona off the shelf. “That’s me. That’s what I do.”

  12. Snobby asshole.

  13. David Cronenberg can suck my batdick.



  15. And, on a more serious note, Crash is one of my all time favorite books but I refuse to see his movie because I feel like from then on I’ll only see James Spader’s face every time I read the book. Is the movie any good? How good compared to the book? Anyone? Anyone?

    • I’ve never seen it but when people tell me their favorite movie is Crash*, I always hope it’s the Cronenberg version but it never is.

      *This happens far more than it should.

      • Whenever I tell people my favorite book is Crash, they look at me quizzically, and I have to say “Not the racism one. The car accident fetish one.” Because, also, people think the racism one was a book before. It is very confusing every time!

        • That’s a crazy book to have as a favorite. I love Ballard and all and I read the whole thing, but that book is weird and made me feel gross. Which is what it should do, really. It’s just a difficult read and not in like a Pynchon way. The movie is also difficult, but is not explicit like the book. It did kind of give me the same queasy feeling the book did, though. It was my least favorite Cronenberg movie until I tried to sit through the Freud one.

  16. SIGH. Comic books are for all ages. It’s a medium. ‘Narrative Art’ if you want to make it sound fancy and avoid the stigma of ‘comic book.’ Superheroes skew towards kids, but that is a genre. That’s like saying radio is for kids because of The Shadow and Green Hornet serials. Comic books are for everybody.

    This is an automated message.

    • I agree. I also think the same things can be said about video games. I think it is lazy criticism whenever anyone compares a film to a VG as a negative. Roger Ebert plays this card all the time.

    • Agreed. Same thing goes for video games. (I hate when film critics compare movies to video games as a negative.) (Roger Ebert plays this card frequently.)

    • THANKS. I was all set to post about comics as art and such, but was feeling lazy.

      Basically, to add your post, everyone go read “Understanding Comics.” Because it’s a very academic argument for “narrative art” that is made using “narrative art.”

    • GUYZ! I’ve been pretty obsessed with Before Watchmen and I’m learning there is a bit of controversy surrounding the project. But to me, it’s great! I love learning more about all of these characters that I can’t get enough of.

      But also, comic books with Super Heroes aren’t my favorite, but boy are some of them really good (Daredevil, particularly). I like ones about real to semi-real life. I call them my “soaps” because, well, BECAUSE!

      • Right on, manerrs. I picked up the first four issues or so of the new Daredevil run and enjoyed them (my dad’s old ’70s Daredevil comics were some of the very first comics I read), and I liked them. I tend not to shop around too much Big 2 stuff these days tho, since they traffic almost exclusively in superheroes.

        Concerning Before Watchmen, I was against it from the start and am not reading them. Blogger David Brothers summed a lot of the controversy up very concisely, so I’ll just post the link if anyone is interested:

        I will say this: The books look gorgeous, and there’s top talent on them. I just wish they were all working on new, originals stories. I would pay good money for that.

    • Comic books haven’t been for kids in years. The industry would giver offerings to Satan if they could get kids to read books. However ever since comics went to direct market and are basically only in comic book stores … you get VERY few young kids reading the books. Sure, the spin off material may be succesful with kids, but that doesn’t translate into sales.

      Even discounting the more artsy comic stuff, even the mainstream is not really aimed towards kids or teens. There are some books in their kids line, but that stuff is dwarfed in number and sales by the ‘core’ books.

  17. Film was arguably conceived as an escapist form of entertainment for the masses.

    but please, continue your argument about devaluing another creative medium.

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