I have blogged before about the difficulty of ‘knowing’ when something is either good or bad – about how to have a standard to evaluate things with/by, and if you want, you can read that post here.
It’s a continuing issue – especially when we think about how to tell if someone really is a good teacher or not. How do we KNOW? Or perhaps, more importantly, how can we be sure that our dissenting voice (if we have one!) is ‘right’, rather than just idiosyncratic? And, finally, what happens if we change our mind? Which opinion was the right one?
All of this pondering has been brought on by seeing, last night, Lars Von Triers’ latest movie Melancholia
I thought, last night, that it was the most boring, vacuous and vapid movie I had seen for a long time (others would/will disagree with me completely). Stylistically arresting maybe, (and at times, yes, weirdly beautiful) – and helped by blasting out full blast Wagner at his most ravishing (a cover for paucity of imagination?), the film’s substance completely failed to convince (I thought). There was nothing there. The dialogue was awful, the characters were universally unlikeable cardboard cut-outs, the action was unbelievable on so many different levels ….sorry, that’s quite enough. However, while some critics had the same kind of reaction as me, others emphatically did not!
Today I find my judgement less harsh. I remember the style more powerfully than I expected
Is it like that with conference talks, for example, or for/with methodological preachers?
1 Do opinions get polarised in the same way at conference talks?
2 Do our opinions change, and if so, which one should we trust?
4 Are we sometimes blinded by the mood music, by the ‘images’, the feel – so that we ignore the (absence of?) substance underneath all that?
And yet we seem to need leaders – and few people become presidents and CEOs without at least a little bit of stylistic charisma…..
5 So if you are a conference goer, film visitor, drama addict, what do you want? Style or substance?
6 If you are a conference presenter which do you plan for for first?
I’d be interested to know.