Surprise! Samuel L. Jackson Supports Marvel

Commenting on the critics with Simon Columb

Oliver Gettell, for the LA Times, writes:

You’d think a tough guy like super-spy Nick Fury, the ringleader of the titular all-star superhero team in The Avengers, would have pretty thick skin. But it turns out Fury, or at least the actor who plays him, Samuel L. Jackson, took exception to the New York Times’ mixed review of the Marvel comic adaptation, in which A.O. Scott wrote that the film’s ‘failures are significant and dispiriting.’ Scott added that the film is dragged down by ‘grinding, hectic emptiness’ and ‘bloated cynicism.’

“In response, Jackson wrote the following tweet: ‘#Avengers fans, NY Times critic AO Scott needs a new job! Let’s help him find one! One he can ACTUALLY do!’ “

Read the full article here.

He is clearly joking! Why can’t someone on Twitter (of all things) support the franchise or film they are in? Last year James Franco mentioned a few negative comments about Rise of the Planet of the Apes which many people believed revealed how bad the film would be – and this was deemed untrue. I think that in a world whereby actors, directors and virtually anyone who is in a media-based business take to Twitter, we should take each and every one of their ‘tweets’ with a pinch of salt.

Ultimately, it doesn’t matter. The coverage seems to be discussed on so many websites and publications as if this is some type of ‘issue’. I think A.O. Scott is established enough to know that his ‘job’ is not under threat due to an actor in a film he negatively reviewed, speaking out. I think the negative press for the sequels to Transformers has shown that in some cases – and especially blockbusters – they are critic-proof. Though we can breath a sigh of relief that Avengers Assemble is actually a pretty good film, I could also argue that I would have seen the film if the reviews were lower. Would I see the film if it unanomously got one-star reviews? Maybe. Would I see it if, on average, it achieved 50% positive press – Hell yes. I didn’t pay all that money for Thor, Captain America: The First Avenger and Iron Man for nothing!

This is a film that doesn’t require critics to ensure success and so the argument is not with the crazed-fans who will attack negative press of a film they love, nor is it with the unanimous love – or pockets of dislike – that scatter the publications that reviews are released within. It might be with Samuel L. Jackson for even caring that A.O. Scott matters for a juggernaut like Avengers Assemble.

Or, maybe Jackson is a little bit more intelligent than that. All these publications writing again and again the following message:

Avengers Assemble has got rave reviews everywhere – except in this one place.

This hardly damns the film, and I think the passing interest people will have in the article will force them to walk away thinking how great the reviews are for Avengers Assemble – rather than paying any interest to the lone reviewer who dislikes the film. Samuel L. Jackson has single-handedly ensured coverage within broadsheets and tabloids that people will read… and the handful of people who were vaguely interested now want to see the film and see whether they agree of disagree. In fact, any press regarding critics’ reviews only ask the reader to ‘make up their own mind’… and watch the film themselves to judge. By paying full price. On opening weekend. With 3D glasses …

Simon Columb

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Andrew-Crump/41400797 Andrew Crump

    Yeah, I found his reaction to A.O. Scott to be in pretty poor taste. Apart from the fact that Scott is a major critical institution unto himself, Jackson represents Marvel&#39;s brand (not on his own, mind, but to a degree); attacking critics over Twitter is the epitome of unprofessional behavior. <br /><br />Besides, we need negative reviews of lauded movies. I think they help us put things in

  • Simoncolumb

    That is very true – negative criticism is what is needed to balance the playing field. Im sure many people out there will watch it a dislike many aspects of the film but may not be able to put into words what it is they dislike – negatve criticism will hopefully give those people a voice if they agree with the negative perspective.