Pointing out each and every screw-up by a non-comics print or internet publication covering comics is a real fun pastime for us comics fans, but it's just as well that those times when mainstream coverage of comics is good, that we point it out.

Armond White, awesomely argumentative film critic for the New York Press reviews the Stephen Soderbergh film Che and sets-up a quick contrast between it's hyper-objective, intellectualized indulgence and O.G status comics legend Spain Rodriquez's "graphic novel" Che: A Graphic Biography.

The heading for White's review is "Steven Soderbergh’s indulgent Che opus can’t compete against a comic book" which is both White's critical opinion simply stated, and also, a heading that mocks the "good for a comic book" contempt those popular press articles about comics all too often have. White's sort of mocking the dim-witted aspects of Soderbergh's Che--"even a comic book is better than this movie!"--at the same time, the dim-witted critics praising the movie (and writing "comics ain't for kids anymore" articles), and teasing you with a quick explanation of the brilliance of Spain's Che:
"In Spain Rodriguez’s new comic-book novel, Che: A Graphic Biography (Verso), a poignant narrative interruption recounts Rodriguez’s own memory of living through the Cuban missile crisis. It makes Che’s significance personal and immediate. Soderbergh doesn’t bother; he’s above the personal revelations of Latin American political drama as risked by Alex Cox’s Walker and Pontecorvo’s Burn. Neither rabble-rousing politician, humanist historian or trailblazing artiste, Soderbergh’s a Pseud."

1 comment:

david e. ford, jr said...

it's bewildering to consider the fact that more often than not when filmmakers deal with historical/biographical/political subjects, they do so in the most douche-y manner imaginable--that is until you consider the price that filmmakers like Cox have ended up paying for making actually provocative, actually prescient political films. though i gather that pontecorvo's relatively sparse output has more to do with personal reasons than any sort of de facto blacklisting, i would venture that because of the enormous dependency that filmmakers have on outside funding for projects, they are less likely to make legitimately controversial films for simple fear that they will never be funded again.