Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Michael Bay Bombs Like an Amateur Auteur

Site Update:I've completed my last new movie review for the next while, for Snowpiercer. I only finished writing it yesterday, and You're Next was slated first, but the latter is still in theaters (on a late June release? how?), so it should go live tomorrow to provide whatever boost I may bestow.

However, I simply lack the time to do more movie reviews, and to do them right, at the moment. Anyway, I think it's one of my best reviews ever - and there's still much fun to be had with all the posts I prepared months ago, like Glengarry, Frodo and Sam, Taimak, Mel Brooks, free Music Documentaries...

Moving on: I try not to give in to schadenfreude much, but there are some people that inspire zero sympathy and compassion from me. One such is Michael Bay. And, a while back, he was basically hired to give a speech at a demo for a new kind of television set.

This man, whose films have grossed insane amounts of cash at the box office, starts to talk about how he works as a director and what film means to him. It's all a scripted preamble before he is supposed to turn around and describe how these new TVs will provide a great, fresh way to experience and enjoy (his) motion pictures.

But, then, as if karma finally caught up to this mega-successful man who always aims for the cheapest, dumbest possible audience: the teleprompter breaks down. Mr. Bay complains about this, only to have the electronics exec beside him invite Michael to just wing it.

And then, this director - whose films have been major box office blockbusters since 1996 - finds himself incapable of describing to a room full of people what it is that he does for a living and why they should like it. With barely an effort, Bay just leaves the stage.

Isn't it just... grand? Every time I even think about this moment, it makes me want to drift off into a wonderful, restful sleep. Maybe there is a god, after all...


  1. Can I say...I have sympathy for Michael Bay? If you've ever prepared remarks, only to have them go wrong--you grabbed the wrong set of index cards, or they're in the wrong order, or you look down at your manuscript and realize that you printed the wrong version of your speech, and that this one is bad and unfinished (none of these is a random example)--it messes you up, and it's really hard to recover. It's not just anyone who can extemporize a speech on the spot, and it's probably harder to do if you've prepared remarks you expected to read than if you're simply asked to speak (in the former case, at least you have a blank slate).

    In some ways, I have to blame the Samsung guys more than Bay. One of the few things I know about teleprompters is that you should always keep a second copy of the speech on you or nearby, given that they can have problems.

    1. Oh, sure, it's the Samsung guys who are at fault. But the fact that Bay is incapable of describing his own profession is just PERFECT. Bay's pictures are empty trash, and the amount of thought that he puts into telling a story is reflected, I feel, in this moment.

      I can respect getting caught flat-footed, but c'mon, man, he's been doing this since the mid-90's! And it's just a job description that he needs to give! And instead of really trying, he gives it a sec and then abandons the scene.

      It makes me feel so happy in the wake of his rampant success - which I only begrudge due to the incredibly shallow results...


Chime in!