There's a funny preview of THE HILLS HAVE EYES 2 at Arrow in the Head.
What's funny about it? The writer of the piece, Scott Weinberg, admits up front that he was cynical about the film's prospects - until he was invited for a set visit, whereupon he changed his mind and decided that the production is "pretty damn impressive."
That's access journalism in action, baby! Give people access, and they're bound to write nice things about you - certainly nicer than if you blew them off.
As if sensing this, Weinberg insists, "...I've got enough experience in this business to not get all geeked out and ranty just because i was invited to visit a movie set..."
But he gives himself away a littl further down:
- "As I wandered around and met cast and crew member alike, one of the most common questions I received was, 'What did you think of the HILLS remake?' See, most of the HILLS 2 follks also worked on last year's remake, and they actually cared about what I thought of the movie."
Interesting, no? I'd wager that if the filmmakers showed their movie to a test screening audience, asked them what they liked, and then recut the film down to a PG-13 rating to please them, Mr. Weinberg would be less than thrilled. But because the filmmakers care about what Mr. Weinberg himself thinks, that shows their dedication to making a great movie.
It's just human nature to give benefit of the doubt to people you've met and who have expressed an interest in trying to do something good. But the simple fact is that the desire to do good work is almost (though not quite) universal, yet despite best intentions, ninety per cent of everything is crap.
In any case, I found this topic amusing, because the problem of access journalims is so much in the news these days - on a far more serious level - because of the Scooter Libby trial, wherein a parade of big-name, high-paid journalists (Tim Russert, etc) have taken the stand and more or less admitted how they bow, kneel, scrape, and otherwise grovel to the sources who grant them access to insider information about the White House. In comparison, the fact that Mr. Weinberg gets excited about a movie because he visits a set is relatively trivial, but I couldn't help noticing a certain parallel.