Michael Bay

A couple video essays hit the web today that I wanted to share, one having to do with why a lot of action scenes “suck” and the other making the argument that you should respect Transformers series director Michael Bay.

Why Do Action Scenes Suck? Video Essay

CorridorDigital has released a video essay titled “Why Do Action Scenes Suck?” Of course, not all action scenes in movies suck. The video talks about why a lot of action scenes fail to do more than present spectacle to audiences. The video essay also examines what it takes to make a good action scene that helps to further the story and elicit emotion from the audience.

Sure, this video essay may oversimplify some of its arguments in an effort to present its points in under eight minutes. For instance: I’m not sure their point as to why the action destruction in Independence Day works, as opposed to the seismic earthquake damage in San Andreas, is valid — both movies put their characters in the middle of danger. It may have been that we cared more about the characters in Independence Day than we did the characters in San Andreas, but the video doesn’t make this designation.

Why You Should Respect Michael Bay Video Essay

Cineflix released a video essay titled “You Can Hate Michael Bay, But You Gotta Respect Him!” as part of their Film School’D series. Anyone who has been following the site for a few years knows that I’m a Michael Bay apologist and fan. I appreciate his movies for their beautiful visuals, and I get a kick out of his ridiculous over-the-top situations and humor and his cartoon character-like persona.

I’ve defended the filmmaker many times over the years, once writing an essay about why Michael Bay is an auteur filmmaker while Brett Ratner is a hack. Many film geeks call Bay a hack but his filmmaking style is so unmistakable that you could notice it from a five-second clip, in the same way you could distinguish a Quentin Tarantino film from any other movie. Does this mean Michael Bay is a good director or a good storyteller? Thats subjective, but I’ve always believed that Bay creates fantastic visceral art for the masses.

The Cineflix video lists six different reasons why you should respect Michael Bay. The eight-and-a-half-minute video might not convince you, but it’s worth watching as it’s mostly an excuse to relay a bunch of fun trivia about the filmmaker and behind-the-scenes stories from Bay’s career.

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