Joss Whedon Responds to Wally Pfister Calling THE AVENGERS “Appalling”

by     Posted 1 year, 336 days ago

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Cinematographer Wally Pfister (The Dark Knight) called a nerdstorm down upon himself recently when he was quoted as saying The Avengers was “appalling.”  No stranger to criticism, Avengers director Joss Whedon took it upon himself to respond (when pressed by reporters).  Or perhaps he was just defending his own cinematographer’s (Seamus McGarvey) honor?  Hit the jump to see what Whedon had to say in response. Fair warning: it’s not much, but it is Whedonesque.

The full back-wally-pfister-christopher-nolan-imageand-forth between The Dark Knight Rises cinematographer Pfister and The Avengers director Whedon follows below (via EW):

Pfister:

“What’s really important is storytelling. None of it matters if it doesn’t support the story. I thought The Avengers was an appalling film. They’d shoot from some odd angle and I’d think, why is the camera there? Oh, I see, because they spent half a million on the set and they have to show it off. It took me completely out of the movie. I was driven bonkers by that illogical form of storytelling.”

Whedon:

“I’m sorry to hear it, I’m a fan.”

Classy.  While the response doesn’t necessitate an in depth discussion, I would like to point out that Whedon could be: A) A fan of Pfister’s work, B) a fan of The Avengers (obviously), or C) a fan of both.  Food for thought…or not.

Regardless of how big a deal we media types make of this, Whedon’s response was handled with more tact than another recent beef between actor Hugo Weaving, who voiced Megatron in all three Transformers films, and the director of said films, Michael Bay.  You can find that entertaining battle of quotes right here.

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  • reasonable guy

    If Whedon says he’s a fan of The Dark Knight Rises then he doesn’t know what good movies are.

    • goingtosuicideChris\”super fraud\”nolan

      Well the fact that you didn’t like the Dark Knight Rises and over 80% of the critics (who get freaking paid to judge movies) did, makes everyone conclude that YOU’RE the one doesn’t know what a good movie is. So i suggest you go back under the bridge you came from you mental midget neanderthal and keep the movie discussion for people who actually possess a properly functioning human brain.

      • Anonymous

        don’t be so aggressive dude… but well said…

      • Chad

        The critics are often wrong.

        Why so serious?

      • dogg

        Dark Knight Rises sucked hard. The whole segment with Wayne trapped in a pit on the other side of the world didn’t work. The Karate Kid miracle broken back cure didn’t work. The tacked on ending didn’t work, and was a massive sellout to keep the franchise alive for a Justice League movie. The music was overbearing, and Bane’s voice was so clumsily dubbed in I never once thought it actually came from him.
        Sounds like I need to go under the bridge too–with the other people who acknowledge reality.

      • Charlie

        Gee “dogg” I’m glad you were appointed to speak for ALL filmgoers. Care to tell me what my opinion of other movies are? Am I allowed to like The Bourne Supremacy? How about Expendables 2? Please email me with my authorized opinion of Skyfall – I can’t wait to find out what my opinion of it is supposed to be! So glad to be corrected on how shitty a film DKR was!

      • goingtosuicideChris\”super fraud\”nolan

        here’s the thing about your inconsequential opinions on Dark Knight Rises, they’re inconsequential. If i lined up a bunch of drooling children with down syndrome after watching the dark knight rises, the comments they’d have pertaining to the film would probably be the same as yours. I’m sorry that you lack the brain power to accept the fact that you’re not supposed to be spoon fed every single piece of information to fill in the holes of a film. Sometimes you’re supposed to come to your own conclusions and that’s what the best films force you to do…to force discussion, opinion and interest. Watching a movie is not like when you retards need your mother at the age of 20 to take you to the washroom to take a dump. Being proud of disliking TDKR is like being the smartest person with down syndrome. So thank you for your irrelevant, i’ll make sure to comment on your football helmets when i see your foaming at the mouth faces in public. Damn troglodytes, who the hell allowed these cretins access to the internet?

      • Joseph M

        Hardcore Batman fans tend to be like that. They take the story of a man dressed as a bat fighting crime very seriously. The joy of Avengers is that they know it’s silly, and revel in the spectacle of it all. And for the Batman DP to be talking about story issues – he may want to speak to Nolan about Batman’s considerable plot holes, Bane’s strangely low key death and a weak, weak ending. Nolan’s movies are like Chinese food; they look great, they taste great, but five minutes later you feel empty.

      • Grey

        seriously? drooling kids with down syndrome? you really need to take a look in the mirror breh

      • goingtosuicideChris\”super fraud\”nolan

        What the hell is a “breh” you mental midget? I have an IQ of 154 you neanderthal. Boo hoo, you couldn’t follow TKDR because it was too complicated…cry me a river dick face. Go watch paranormal activity 4 you piece of excrement.

      • ^ThisGuyIsATwat

        I have an IQ of 155. And I think you’re wrong.

      • Charles

        I have an IQ of 200

      • Fitzthistlewits

        My IQ is 503.2004, just to add my two cents.

      • theboiz

        mah eye cue be over one billion billion fool

      • stove

        to the suicide chris noan guy….um, just askin, if you have a hundred and fifty four IQ then what are you doing getting caught up in probably the most pedantic discussion of Batman disguised as cleverness i have seen here in some time. If you are smarter then them, then why haven’t you come up with one succinct argument to shut them up? Not calling you out on everything, just bringing your IQ into a comments section debate about a batman topic on a movie website just seems… well… not very smart. Why can’t we keep movie talk to movies, slander doesn’t have to be part of it. You got some good things to say, no need for dirty pool, old man.

      • Josh Kaye

        Actually dogg, it’s already been said that this Batman won’t be associated with the Justice League movies…so…I mean…you’re kinda wrong…

      • Diashi

        The new Batman films were interesting takes on the material, but just so needlessly loaded with filler, and the cinematography was messy – in the wrong way. They weren’t half as entertaining as the Avengers.

    • Chris \”Super Fraud\” Nolan

      Suicide’s comments bespeak the typical mob mentality of the classless fans of the Dark Knight Rises. I could point out that anyone who thought the scene where batman has his back punched together was in anyway credible probably seduces young children by plying them with gummy bears but I chose to take the moral high ground and don’t mention it because I have whats known as class. Being mature (and lets face it people who champion a comic book film as art are quite immature), I would never ever disparage those who are differently-abled for the sake of scoring points in an internet pissing contest. Now the burden of proof lies with fans of DKR to exhibit class and prove not everyone who liked that grossly incompetent film are as hateful as the commenters above. You all have a long, painful process to go through before you can become adult members of a decent society; I wish you well on your journies of personal growth.

  • zac

    i love it no matter which way you spin it always ends up portraying Bay negatively, everyone all the freaking time!!! utter bias, he had every right to respond the way he did to an ungrateful actor, furthermore his response was measured and dignified!

    • Afilmguy

      I think you misinterpret that exchange. Weaving didn’t mention anything about wealth or getting paid. His job is to contribute to art and he expressed the clear lack of relationships in Bay’s filmmaking which affects Weaving’s job; it makes him feel as though he really isn’t doing a job at all. Bay’s response, which I definitely think is a solid and understandable point, completely strays from Weaving’s intentions. Weaving isn’t an ungrateful actor at all, but he was shown no value in making the Transformers films (not to mention the films themselves were shown no artistic value at all). Bay’s response is justified, but his reaction is childish. Weaving knows what his job is for: it’s not to get paid, it’s to contribute to art. Bay should know his job is not to get paid, but to create art (which, considering every film he’s done, he obviously has absolutely no idea as to what that means in cinema).

  • zac

    i love it no matter which way you spin it always ends up portraying Bay negatively, everyone all the freaking time!!! utter bias, he had every right to respond the way he did to an ungrateful actor, furthermore his response was measured and dignified!

    p.s the avengers was appalling and rips off Bays last 45 min of tf3!

    • Ur mom

      I’m sorry to hear that. I’m a fan. :-(

      • dobby

        I’m so using this for EVERYTHING

  • stormbringer

    I find it amusing that Whedon responds to this direct, unmistakable attack of his work with such class while Bay throws a whiny, petulant tantrum at a comment that didn’t actually attack his work whatsoever.

    • Daniel

      Producers are Hollywood’s true drama queens.

  • Afilmguy

    I think you misinterpret that exchange. Weaving didn\’t mention anything about wealth or getting paid. His job is to contribute to art and he expressed the clear lack of relationships in Bay\’s filmmaking which affects Weaving\’s job; it makes him feel as though he really isn\’t doing a job at all. Bay\’s response, which I definitely think is a solid and understandable point, completely strays from Weaving\’s intentions. Weaving isn\’t an ungrateful actor at all, but he was shown no value in making the Transformers films (not to mention the films themselves were shown no artistic value at all). Bay\’s response is justified, but his reaction is childish. Weaving knows what his job is for: it\’s not to get paid, it\’s to contribute to art. Bay should know his job is not to get paid, but to create art (which, considering every film he\’s done, he obviously has absolutely no idea as to what that means in cinema).

  • DREDD

    Actually, every big blockbuster this year had enough faults to upset everyone. Great films non the less, but wowee all had plenty of let downs.
    Avengers, TDKR, Prometheus, Spider-man, Snow white, etc.. All involved should take a good look at their own works before throwing rocks.

    The smaller films shone through IMO. DREDD being my favorite. And I think John Carter wasn’t so bad neither. I seriously hope the Hobbit lives up to its hype. And Bond can only go up after the last one.

    re: the BAY/Weaving thing,

    well, after I read Weaving’s comments, I also at first thought it was an attack. However, read it again in a different way and it wasn’t. Its open to interpretation on depending on how it was read. Thats the trouble with written text, it isn’t written in any tone so comes across as either. So technically Bay did the right thing, as he read it as an attack, and had a valid point. But if it wasn’t an attack then he can simply backtrack and apologies.

    Dirt simple eh!

  • DREDD

    Actually, every big blockbuster this year had enough faults to upset everyone. Great films non the less, but wowee all had plenty of let downs.
    Avengers, TDKR, Prometheus, Spider-man, Snow white, etc.. All involved should take a good look at their own works before throwing rocks.

    The smaller films shone through IMO. DREDD being my favorite. And I think John Carter wasn\’t so bad neither. I seriously hope the Hobbit lives up to its hype. And Bond can only go up after the last one.

    re: the BAY/Weaving thing,

    well, after I read Weaving\’s comments, I also at first thought it was an attack. However, read it again in a different way and it wasn\’t. Its open to interpretation on depending on how it was read. Thats the trouble with written text, it isn\’t written in any tone so comes across as either. So technically Bay did the right thing, as he read it as an attack, and had a valid point. But if it wasn\’t an attack then he can simply backtrack and apologies.

    Dirt simple eh!

    ps, collider, please fix this stupid faulty messaging system. ITS BROKEN!

    • calvincrack

      @DREDD

      i agree with everything you said. including the part about DREDD being awesome, and the part about collider’s message board being utter bollocks.

  • Patrick

    You have a serious problem if you associate RT with A/ paid critics only, B/ an adequate representation of a film\’s quality. All it means is 80% of internet film geeks, who contribute reviews to blogs, and a handful of paid critics liked it. Besides, using the mass as support in an argument is mind-boggling–should I remind you where this country stands worldwide when it comes to education? Are film critics to you somehow above average when it comes to intelligence/logic/reasoning/judgment?

    Last time I checked, great genre movies–just like every other art form–tend to be controversial/divisive upon release like Fight Club, The Thing, or even Prometheus–I have my reasons for that last one. But it\’s ok, keep celebrating hive-mentality nonetheless.

    Finally, since a couple other people have brought up Bay, I would like to point out that there is a reason why a movie like The Rock is on Criterion. Hollywood movies are incredibly inept these days. Aside from hack, money-driven screenwriters, and dumbass executives who only understand the business aspects of the industry, you have, for example, Aliasing and inexplicably CGI\’d human stars like Chris Evans in that 360-degree shot in Avengers; terrible low-light cinematography in Expendables 2/Dredd 3D; rush-hour traffic, point-blank tumbler shots that don\’t even register, and Cotillard\’s laughable death in TDKR.

    When someone gets paid 6-figure salaries to do something they supposedly love, I personally believe it\’s ok to expect more then rushed, youtube-generation adequate pieces of fan-fiction. Neither the Avengers nor TDKR were remotely close to great films.

  • aaronsullivan

    On the messed up comment system: back to disqus, maybe?

  • Shad

    Who gives a ****? It’s one man’s opinion.

  • XS

    AVENGERS was lame. TRANSFORMERS and BATTLESHIP were tighter and hence better.

    AVENGERS had too much dialogue (come on, you don’t want to see those people talk… I mean, come on, why did they have 5 prequel movies then) and the action was too short.
    Bland and boring sets (the carrier looked like straight from the StarGate TV Series) and far too much blablablabla.
    No drama (get rid of Thor or Capt’n America… let them die!!!), stupid oneliners and YES, the cinematography was boring.

    Waste of time and money.

    • schneebles

      Had to laugh at this comment. I’m a Tansformers fan and even I know it’s a ridiculous thing to say that it was “tighter” than The Avengers.

      Most people would say that the best part of The Avengers is when they were interacting with each other… or the “blablablablaba” as you call it. Obviously you came to the movie to see things “go boom!” (otherwise why would you bring up those two specific movies), and there’s nothing wrong with that, but to say a movie was lame because you don’t want to see people talk really is not the most intelligent argument.

      And kill off half of the team in the first movie? That just doesn’t make any sense whatsoever. From a marketing or a story standpoint. Kill Thor without having him meet up with Jane Foster again? Kill Captain America before we see the fallout of being in another time period? Nonsensical.

    • Ur mom

      I wanna have what you’re smoking!! :D

  • JPA

    I liked TDKR quite a bit,not as much as I wanted,but I thought it was pretty good. And I thought Pfister comment was the most snobby thing ever. Kudos to Whedon for being a gentleman about it.

  • Marston

    I know it’s an opinion,but…that Pfister commentary came across as plain stupid. I mean,really,some unecessary camera angles in the spectatle part of the movie completely took all your attention from the story? What are you,a dog? There’s nothing wrong to show off a little in the really big battle scenes. I’m pretty sure with this in mind I will notice tons of unecessary angles now when I watch TDKR again.

    • flinderbahn

      “What are you, a dog?” LOL SQUIRREL! Dang, now I’m looking somewhere else

  • LEM

    TDKR was an entertaining movie but wasn’t a good movie. They had plot holes so big that giant alien dragon from Avengers could sneak in.

    • stove

      its easy to feel that way, but I seen tdkr many times, can say that there is not real big plot hole, that ship is pretty air tight. No joke, every hole is explainable. Even in the eight minutes from light to dark before Batman first shows up, there is a scene of M. Modine in a deep blue dusk shot showing the transfer of daytime to night… not just light to black…. just saying there aren’t as many deep holes as many would think…. just a few parlor tricks to get things going.

      • Bob

        There are huge plot hole. Your in delusional land if you don’t think so. Not being disrespectful saying that but it’s true. I loved TDKR but their are plot holes. Wayne somehow arriving in the city is the best one. He was half way across the wold, no money, no friends around and he somehow gets back to the other side of the world(insanely fast I might add) and somehow gets into the city….how? Idk is the answer. Why not tell the Gov about this secret way to get in just like he did. He could send them an anonymous phone call/note, and still go in himself. Then the gov can send one agent/soldier in per time if need be into the city. I was like WTF when Wayne just appeared in Gotham. I loved the film, but that part of it really upset me.

      • stove

        Not delusional land, just Fact land where we pay attention to details set up by the film maker… in Batman Begins, Wayne proves he can travel without money. In TDKR he does it in twenty three days. Also, there is no contact with the outside world. Bane fixed that with a four megaton nuclear bomb, (which is a fifth smaller than the Hiroshima bomb, so Batman could survive the blast The Bat can basically fly half the speed of sound, not to far out there) I was like WTF too when Wayne got in, but it’s not out of logic with the pieces set up by the earlier movies. There are moments that seem cheap, but all can be explained with logic or shot sets up by the earlier films. Keep them coming, I like the challenge and if you disagree lets have a serious discussion…. no put downs, no cheap jabs, but and honest to goodness discussion… it’s be awesome. Oh also, Batman doesn’t get help, help get’s Batman. This is after all a world without Superman.

  • TheSargonTimes

    The Avengers was so much better than the dark knight rises…Whedon rocks

    • Bob

      Hell yea it was. TDKR was still really good though, just not better than Avengers. Thats just my opinion tho.

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  • Ash

    IRON MAN 3 trailer com on people 2 percent left https://www.facebook.com/avengers/app_470256006352542

  • J.

    Wally was only being honest. Some times the truth hurts and sometimes it hurts so much that there’s not much room for a response. I love everyone! *That’s a lie. I just felt like being positive at the moment.*

  • J.

    Wally was only being honest. Some times the truth hurts and sometimes it hurts so much that there\’s not much room for a response. I love everyone! *That\’s a lie. I just felt like being positive at the moment.*

  • Doctor Bong

    I liked Avengers and The Dark Knight Rises a lot. Both had the odd plot hole and the odd moment where the drama was more narm than drama, but they were still enjoyable. You can enjoy two films, but sadly not without being peppered to death by the fans of those who view you as attacking their favourites.

  • Peter Fuhrman

    I thought The Dark Knight Rises really fell short. The Avengers had it all. It was compelling, funny, charming, entertaining, action packed and just an all around full movie.

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  • Pocketses

    I find this “boards” lack of sarcasm detection to be quite disturbing, actually. At least 3 times in these comments has an absurdly over-the-top sarcastic response been taken to heart…it makes no sense.

    Come on, people, step up your inter-game.

  • Nick

    They’re both “fun” movies, but I think The Avengers has the upper hand (I say this as a Nolan die-hard). Joss Whedon’s movie wasn’t meant to be as dark and gritty and down to earth as was Mr. Nolan’s.
    That’s why Nolan is less forgivable for his plot holes and silly story lines. Our expectations were a lot higher.

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  • Damon

    I think the avengers was a way superior film on all levels. Sure its not as deep as the dark knight triology but cmon marvel makes films successfull without having all these reboots. Batman started off shit with adam west then shit again with batman and robin. Not to mention the same with superman. So avengers is better as it was a first attempt and a very good one at creating a unique superheroe movie. DC have failed with making the justice league as they cant even seem to get green lantern made right.

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