Why We Won't Push Worst-Of Lists
Hey readers! Andreas here. We’re ten days away from our Best Picture project (one Best Picture winner reviewed a day), and we are hard at work reviewing both upcoming films, and ones of the last ten years for our decade ending lists. One of these lists is our bottom ten worst films of the decade. We’ve invited readers to submit their favourite (and least favourite films) of the decade, so this may not come as any surprise.
However, we do a lot of lists here at Films Fatale, and that’s no secret either. Today may be the day to make this kind of a declaration, since we are busy doing in-house, back-end tasks to prepare for the roads ahead. We’re going to make this clear today. We will not take pride in making negative lists that aren’t your usual end-of-year or decade works. This goes for lists like “The Ten Worst Science Fiction Films Ever”, “The Ten Most Overrated Performances”, and the like. No pointless shaming of any sort.
This isn’t a political thing. This isn’t out of fear. I’ve made these kinds of lists for other publications before I started Films Fatale. I simply don’t think there’s any use in this kind of negativity anymore. Part of the reason why I started this website was to educate and bring light to the joys of film. Sure, we can laugh at the expense of films, but we do so anyway. We’re doing a worst-of-the-decade list, plus each year we will bring up similar lists. Plus, we give out negative reviews when we feel they have warranted them. Why do we need to stir the pot and call such-and-such an overrated film, or bash so-and-so’s acting? Look. I’m very honest and will make these claims when I see fit. To dedicate entire lists to this just doesn’t feel right.
Technically, I am a hypocrite. I’ve already made a negative list, with my “Ten Best Picture Films Worse Than Green Book” list. That was once, and I feel like that was a little bit different. I wanted to make a point that Green Book, while undeserving, is not the worst Best Picture winner ever. I feel like arbitrarily bringing up my least favourite romantic comedies is click-baity, and usually spawned from thin air (rather than being the topic of a current discussion). In all honesty, I would rather scramble for ideas than resort to being the website that just defecates on things people love.
You will know how I feel about a film when I review it. When I don’t include it on favourite lists. When I discuss it in retrospect in a related article. What’s the point in dedicating time, site space, and energy on being the edgy kid in the back of the class? I’d rather highlight films I adore, rather than fester on ones I hate.
Expect negative reviews: many films are far from perfect. Expect year-end retrospectives: we have to bid these bad films adieu. Don’t expect a negative list just because it can exist. I want Films Fatale to be the kind of site that champions film and it successes, not resorts to bringing up failures. We have so much to celebrate. I personally believe it is virtually impossible to watch every single great film ever made, and I find that journey to even try so much more rewarding than the toxic culture of “slamming” everything like we’re super cool, highly paid pundits. I’d like to think we can do better as a society, and as a platform.
Onwards and upwards!
Creator of Films Fatale
Andreas Babiolakis has a Masters degree in Film and Photography Preservation and Collections management from Ryerson University, as well as a Bachelors degree in Cinema Studies from York University. His favourite times of year are the Criterion Collection flash sales and the annual Toronto International Film Festival.