Entertainment Weekly gave this week’s new sci-fi release “Kin” a big, fat F.
Only the critic in question didn’t slam the film’s acting, pacing, script or other film essentials. Critic Chris Nashawaty had a different agenda in mind, one that if applied retroactively would crush a number of classic movies.
The film’s story put an alien gun in a teen character’s hands. That was enough for the critic to flunk the movie.
“Kin” follows an adopted teen named Eli (Myles Truitt) who discovers an otherworldly weapon which only he can use. That comes in handy when his ne’er do well brother (“Sing Street” standout Jack Reynor) is targeted by mobsters (led by James Franco).
Nashawaty dubbed the film “borderline irresponsible.”
Kin is a movie about a child with an all-powerful firearm that makes him feel important and special and powerful. On a one-to-ten scale of moral fecklessness, this ranks about a thousand.
The rant began by saying the movie’s PG:13 ratings is a key culprit here. Plus, Truitt’s Eli is 14, which changes everything for both the critic and his rating.
That’s three years younger than Dylagn (sic) Klebold and Eric Harris were when they went on their killing spree at Columbine High School and six years younger than Adam Lanza was when he murdered 27 kids and teachers at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. You can disagree with this reviewer’s take on Kin and what it’s saying both explicitly and implicitly about guns. But I can’t and won’t recommend it in good conscience.
Remember, this is a science fiction film.
He doubled down on Twitter, insulting anyone who dared to disagree with his worldview.
If you think a movie with a 14 year old with a giant gun sounds cool, you’ll love ‘KIN’. Also, you’re insane. My first ‘F’ review in some time.
— chris nashawaty (@ChrisNashawaty) August 28, 2018
The site’s readers let him have it in the comments section.
- I’ve had my fill of these type of reviews. I have plenty of places to go to talk about the need for better gun control measures. Does the character actually go on some crazed killing spree? No? Then why even bring up Columbine?
- I know! What is a fact? Millions of teens use guns every year hunting with friends and family or at ranges.
- What a joke of a review. I think this guy just watched the trailer and used it as a soapbox to spout his anti-gun rhetoric. Hopefully EW will take this nonsense down and replace it with a reviewer that actually reviews the movie.
One commenter supported the reviewer while accidentally showing the absurdity of the argument. The reader cites “The Hunger Games,” a PG:13 rated franchise aimed at teens, as another movie deserving an “F” grade.
That franchise featured plenty of teen on teen killing, also in an overtly science fiction setting. It’s safe to say youngsters deployed weapons in other recent YA adaptations, too. Maybe even firearms of some kind.
Did they earn F ratings in Entertainment Weekly? If not, should the site retroactively grade them anew?
See where this is going?
There’s something more disturbing here than a critic letting his far-left sensibilities swarm his duties. Should we go back and reconsider other movies where teens used firearms? What about “Red Dawn,” where teens took up arms to fend off a Russian invasion?
That camp classic (sorry, it’s not a good film in the traditional sense) also arrived in theaters with a PG:13 rating). Is it suddenly irresponsible?
This isn’t an isolated incident.
Recently, IndieWire.com’s critic savaged the Netflix series “Insatiable” for daring to show characters who weren’t woke enough by the site’s standards.
Over and again. the site slammed elements of the show, like one character making a crude analogy the critic didn’t like, as an example of how the show shouldn’t tell a story. Should all characters be saints?
Another example from the article:
Problem: Don’t make the audience invest in a will-they-won’t-they romance with a middle-aged man and a high school girl.
The wording in the review proved chilling, too.
Such thorough evaluation isn’t meant to pile on, nor is it some sort of twisted revenge — “Since I had to watch it, you’re going to read about it!” It’s because recognizing flaws can lead to less of them in the future, or, if you’d rather, it’s because if enough people do watch “Insatiable,” Netflix might pick it up for another season. And that’s no good for anyone (emphasis added twice).
The intention is clear. Make movies with themes we don’t like, and we’ll savage them until they go away. Critics don’t hold infinite power, but they can help or hurt a film’s box office success.
Talk about killing creativity.
It’s what woke comedienne Amy Schumer endured not once but twice in the last two years. Her comedies “Snatched” and “I Feel Pretty” got creamed by critics for not being politically correct. The former’s flaw? It made people of color the villains.
The latter? It suggested a full-figured gal might get a confidence boost if she suddenly thought she was supermodel thin.
It’s certainly appropriate to bring select issues up. What’s scary is that these critics used them as excuses to steer audiences away from the movies in question.
This critic is conservative and routinely illustrates political themes in movie reviews. That doesn’t stop me from giving them the “all clear” sign. “Snowpiercer” trafficked in global warming hysteria, but it’s a gripping sci-fi yarn all the same. And I’d never suggest artists steer clear from these themes.
Have at it.
Hopefully, the artists will make them smart and compelling in the process. Or, at the very least, ensure they didn’t invade the narrative to the detriment of the movie goers.
For a small but growing number of critics, disagreeing with their worldview is enough to earn a failing grade.