More than anything it gives me easy access to fellow fans of a film so that we can discuss a film, celebrate it, debate its meaning, make fun of it, predict its chances, or whatever we want in a conversation.
For me to do the same in real life, with my taste in films, is a task more arduous than it should be. When In The Loop
got an Oscar nomination, for example, I had to drive fifteen minutes away to a friend's work just so I'd have someone to high-five and chat with. With film forums, facebook and whatnot, I was able to share the same celebratory news with fellow fans here and around the world.
More to the point, the filmmakers themselves could share their joy with fans such as myself, like when director/co-writer of In The Loop
tweeted "Bloomin heck. In The Loop nominated for Best Adapted Screenplay Oscar. Bonk me purple."
In the case of something like Brick
, it's less an advantage and more of a necessity these days. Kids who watch Brick
and immediately love it unconditionally might want to jump into similar films, or they like the film but aren't familiar with the context. At any rate the internet supplies these viewers with help. Fellow fans can suggest what else to watch (or not). Fellow fans can help interpret or fill in. Without informed people to talk to a film like Brick
might end up just another oddity on your shelf before Cache
and after American Movie
- amusing, distracting, but removed of the connection shared by those who appreciate the films.
This can also be a drawback. In the old days, a film won the cult film
"honor" through very small and very social means. Midnight screenings on college campuses, VHS tapes worn out from trading amongst friends - appreciation would build up over years. Now it's all very quick. Never saw Slacker
? Put it on your netflix queue. Hey, you may even be able to instant-watch. Mabe you even have it already as part of some low-cost 4-pack DVD set. New movies like Repo! The Genetic Opera
get marketed as "cult" or "fringe" before they've even built up an audience, taking advantage of the insatiability of film fans that, with more accessibility to their drug of choice, need something NEW and ORIGINAL, NOW! Movies designed to sit in the mind and grow don't get a chance to. They're more disposable than ever.
That's a small drawback, however, and more nostalgic than damaging. I love how film forums allow deserving filmmakers to be celebrated quicker. If this were the 90's a director like Rian might have taken a decade before being able to mount The Brothers Bloom
. Now, with the help of internet buzz helping Brick
's sales and notoriety, we were able to get The Brothers Bloom
within a couple of years. And it was the best film of 2009.
Of course, I don't personally know anyone who's seen it besides one or two of my more frenzied film friends.
On the forums, however?
We are legion.
I hope this has helped you with your homework essay.