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Tomorrowland's Damon Lindelof and George Clooney talk fanboy cynicism

05.20.2015

This Friday sees the release of Brad Bird's TOMORROWLAND, which was also written with Damon Lindelof. The writer of STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS and PROMETHEUS has had more than his fair share of criticism over the years and while TOMORROWLAND looks to focus on a great, big, beautiful tomorrow, Lindelof and George Clooney wouldn't be too surprised if audiences don't take to it.

Damon Lindelof on fanboy cynicism:

There's this great thing in all of us where we want to hope, we want to believe. But then what happens? We saw that hope with Obama's first election and then, with the second election, the cynicism sets in. We all want to be activated, but when you face the pragmatic realities of what George was talking about, where now you're starting to fail sometimes, it's so easy to default back to cynicism. Which isn't to say that you have to love everything — obviously, we have to open ourselves up to some level of criticism. But when we all took this on, people were saying, "You can't make an original movie anymore, and you certainly can't make an interesting Disney movie. If you make a Disney movie named Tomorrowland, it's gotta have Space Mountain, and you basically have to sell tickets to the amusement park.

Now, I don't want to start a war, but as a self-identified fanboy, I think that with this movie, it's gonna be really hard for fanboys to say, "I really enjoyed this movie. It made me feel good." God forbid you tweeted something like that! What would happen to you? You'd lose your readership! "You sold out!"

George Clooney on cynicism:

Listen, we're at sort of a cynical time in society. Don't ever read comments on anything! People can live anonymously, and I honestly think that when they were talking about freedom of speech in 1787, the theory was that you had to own your speech. It had to belong to you, and you actually had to take some responsibility for it. Now you can just sit alone and say horrible things, and it becomes fashionable to be shitty to people. Now people will come up to me, thinking they're keeping it real, and they say, "I hated you in that last movie!" And I'll look at them and go, "Well, I think those extra 20 pounds look good on you." It's become a much more cynical time, a time when people think its fun to only be negative.

While I'm sure the likes of Lindelof and Clooney see a lot more personal criticism than you and I, I'm not sure it's fair to dismiss it just because it seems like the "cool thing to do." Do they have a point? Absolutely, but in the wake of genre films like EX MACHINA and MAD MAX: FURY ROAD that have captured the imaginations of fanboys across the globe, when is it time to just own up to what may be a flawed product? You can check out our review of TOMORROWLAND here, but it looks like Brad Bird and Co. may have fallen short of meeting their goal. Then again, it sounds like they may be prepared for that anyway.

TOMORROWLAND opens in theaters this Friday.

Do you feel Damon Lindelof is correct on his viewpoint of cynicism?

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Source: Vulture

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2:32AM on 05/21/2015
Clooney and Lindelof: "the Internet is cynical"

Internet: "wah wah wahhh no we're not! You suck!"
Clooney and Lindelof: "the Internet is cynical"

Internet: "wah wah wahhh no we're not! You suck!"
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10:58AM on 05/21/2015
Actually it's more like.....

Clooney and Lindelof: "The Internet is cynical."
Internet: "Wow are you a whiny little bitch! Grow up and take responsibility for your shit writing."
Actually it's more like.....

Clooney and Lindelof: "The Internet is cynical."
Internet: "Wow are you a whiny little bitch! Grow up and take responsibility for your shit writing."
+0
12:09AM on 05/21/2015

What an idiot.....

Who exactly is "we all" who had hope? I'm from Illinois, and a 1/2 term Senator who had never passed a bill (nor even offered one), had more "present" votes than anyone in the Illinois House, and who got elected by TWICE getting opponents' sealed divorce records revealed to the media got elected based on getting enormous sums of cash and spewing feel good rhetoric to the terminally half-witted. No one I know "hoped" Washington would suddenly change because someone who never accomplished
Who exactly is "we all" who had hope? I'm from Illinois, and a 1/2 term Senator who had never passed a bill (nor even offered one), had more "present" votes than anyone in the Illinois House, and who got elected by TWICE getting opponents' sealed divorce records revealed to the media got elected based on getting enormous sums of cash and spewing feel good rhetoric to the terminally half-witted. No one I know "hoped" Washington would suddenly change because someone who never accomplished anything (never even held a full-time job in his life) got elected to office. Only ridiculously stupid people believed that "hope and change" crap (or his claim that the oceans would stop rising due to his election).

That said, this film is currently sitting at 60% on RT (barely fresh) and the average is 6.1, which is painfully mediocre. JoBlo's reviewer (a notoriously soft touch) gave the film a 4 out of 10. So please stop with the platitudes about cynicism. You wrote a crap movie and are shocked that people don't think it's The Wizard Of Oz. Welcome to the real world.
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10:57PM on 05/20/2015
This movie just didn't interest me, gave me a what the heck is this even about vibe. I do agree with Clooney saying about how cynical people are nowadays. To me it feels people seem to follow the bandwagon a little too much, something the internet & this site are guilty of tenfold. You MUST like this movie or HATE this one or you don't know movies.It's so obvious to pick out the followers & the trollers here. The younger ones from the older ones. The ones who say STFU & die Mr so& so. People
This movie just didn't interest me, gave me a what the heck is this even about vibe. I do agree with Clooney saying about how cynical people are nowadays. To me it feels people seem to follow the bandwagon a little too much, something the internet & this site are guilty of tenfold. You MUST like this movie or HATE this one or you don't know movies.It's so obvious to pick out the followers & the trollers here. The younger ones from the older ones. The ones who say STFU & die Mr so& so. People seem to mistake it as having an honest opinion. My interest in certain movies has dwindled quite a bit over the years. There are maybe like 6 movies this summer that have my attention & well Avengers kinda disappointed me already.
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8:10PM on 05/20/2015

They're both right!

We hardly give anything a chance these days. Most people watch movies while doing a million other things and not really paying nearly enough attention to the screen. While some movies are beyond repair and others over-hyped I have to say somewhere in the middle we are afraid to say we enjoyed a movie without picking on it.
We hardly give anything a chance these days. Most people watch movies while doing a million other things and not really paying nearly enough attention to the screen. While some movies are beyond repair and others over-hyped I have to say somewhere in the middle we are afraid to say we enjoyed a movie without picking on it.
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8:52PM on 05/20/2015
Honestly I think the exact opposite is true. If anything people are afraid of being chastised for not liking certain movies. Oh you didn't enjoy The Avengers? You're not cool and don't know what fun is! Oh you didn't like American Sniper? You're not American, get the hell out of this country!! I think it's sad really, people should be able to express their opinions about a piece of art without feeling threatened.
Honestly I think the exact opposite is true. If anything people are afraid of being chastised for not liking certain movies. Oh you didn't enjoy The Avengers? You're not cool and don't know what fun is! Oh you didn't like American Sniper? You're not American, get the hell out of this country!! I think it's sad really, people should be able to express their opinions about a piece of art without feeling threatened.
7:11PM on 05/20/2015
While I agree that we live in a slightly more cynical time, I don't think that is the main issue here. Because our society is so much more connected nowadays everyone knows everyone's opinions on everything. I'm sure people 20 years ago had just as harsh comments about films but they kept it to themselves because they weren't able to hop on Joblo or Facebook to vent. Now that people can express their opinions in such an open forum it seems like they are "trolling" or bashing a film unfairly.
While I agree that we live in a slightly more cynical time, I don't think that is the main issue here. Because our society is so much more connected nowadays everyone knows everyone's opinions on everything. I'm sure people 20 years ago had just as harsh comments about films but they kept it to themselves because they weren't able to hop on Joblo or Facebook to vent. Now that people can express their opinions in such an open forum it seems like they are "trolling" or bashing a film unfairly. I'm so sick of people throwing that word "trolling" around when someone is just trying to express their honest feelings about something.
So for Lindelof to claim that fanboys are trolling his films for no reason is absolutely childish. If after three films people are still unhappy with your work then maybe the problem lies with you? I went to film school and I understand how hard it is to put yourself out their im such a personal way. But you know what? I also learned that you need to know how to take criticism and grow from it. Admit that the problem may lie with you and take step towards improving yourself. To just dismiss all criticism as "fanboy hate" as Lindelof does is like is said before childish. Take for example the interview with Neil Blomkamp Joblo ran before Chappie. He fully admitted that Elysium was a major misstep(I don't agree) on his part. He FULLY OWNED UP to the fact that he didn't make the best film possible. Then he went further in saying that he learned from his mistakes and will continue to grow as a filmmaker. Based on his above quotes I don't expect Lindelof to ever make an admission like that. Sooner rather than later his time in the industry will be up and he'll still blame the "fanboys"
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8:25AM on 05/21/2015
I have to agree with your words. I just thought things are bit more negative now in our connected world, but the same way we are afraid to say Avengers are fun some are scared to say it wasn't good.
I have to agree with your words. I just thought things are bit more negative now in our connected world, but the same way we are afraid to say Avengers are fun some are scared to say it wasn't good.
1:21PM on 05/21/2015
Oh I totally agree that we are more negative nowadays. And there will always be trolls who say all that negative stuff just to get attention. I'm just sick of getting called a hater or troll if I don't happen to like something that is popular.
Oh I totally agree that we are more negative nowadays. And there will always be trolls who say all that negative stuff just to get attention. I'm just sick of getting called a hater or troll if I don't happen to like something that is popular.
7:06PM on 05/20/2015
LINDELOF: "There's this great thing in all of us where we want to hope, we want to believe. But then what happens?"

Your script-writing. That's what happens.
LINDELOF: "There's this great thing in all of us where we want to hope, we want to believe. But then what happens?"

Your script-writing. That's what happens.
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6:53PM on 05/20/2015
Everything Clooney said was so damn accurate. Everybody, including the writers on some sites like Collider, basically just crap on everything before even seeing the finished product, or just jump on the popular opinion bandwagon. Now, people think they're being bold by saying extremely disrespectful stuff in person. What Clooney, and even Lindelof said, is spot on, but I'm not sure it's spot on in regards to this particular film (Tomorrowland).
Everything Clooney said was so damn accurate. Everybody, including the writers on some sites like Collider, basically just crap on everything before even seeing the finished product, or just jump on the popular opinion bandwagon. Now, people think they're being bold by saying extremely disrespectful stuff in person. What Clooney, and even Lindelof said, is spot on, but I'm not sure it's spot on in regards to this particular film (Tomorrowland).
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6:32PM on 05/20/2015
Who the hell goes up to George Clooney in public and says " I hated you in that last movie!"
Who the hell goes up to George Clooney in public and says " I hated you in that last movie!"
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10:48PM on 05/20/2015
People who just saw Monuments Men? Which is probably twice as insulting since he also directed it.
People who just saw Monuments Men? Which is probably twice as insulting since he also directed it.
5:09PM on 05/20/2015
People had high hopes for this when it was only known as a secret project with a famous director.
Truth is I think a lot of fans were disappointed when it turned out to be just another "teen is the only one who can save a mystical city/land" story. That is the same story told in almost every YA book series these days.
People had high hopes for this when it was only known as a secret project with a famous director.
Truth is I think a lot of fans were disappointed when it turned out to be just another "teen is the only one who can save a mystical city/land" story. That is the same story told in almost every YA book series these days.
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4:08PM on 05/20/2015

There is a difference between being a fanboy and being cynical.

I am assuming they are talking about cynicism because the Tomorrowland movie SUCKED. I was excited to see, it I don't normally watch Disney movies anymore (except Star wars and Marvel movies) but pure DIsney films just usually bore me. Then I saw Brad Bird was directing a movie about a theme park ride and I was like "It worked for Pirates... So I am in".

Then I just saw the movie. It was just bad. There is little I can say that is good because the whole film is forgettable.
I am assuming they are talking about cynicism because the Tomorrowland movie SUCKED. I was excited to see, it I don't normally watch Disney movies anymore (except Star wars and Marvel movies) but pure DIsney films just usually bore me. Then I saw Brad Bird was directing a movie about a theme park ride and I was like "It worked for Pirates... So I am in".

Then I just saw the movie. It was just bad. There is little I can say that is good because the whole film is forgettable.
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10:50PM on 05/20/2015
so which one are you? I definitely think you are more cynical than fanboy, since you seem to not like anything. In other words, you are pretty much the opposite of Soloist.
so which one are you? I definitely think you are more cynical than fanboy, since you seem to not like anything. In other words, you are pretty much the opposite of Soloist.
4:01PM on 05/20/2015

They're not wrong

It's so easy for people to judge things. Everyone is a critic. Sure, Tomorrowland might not be a great movie (I haven't seen it yet, so maybe it's great), but people on the internet act like making a film (or any art for that matter) is easy. It's not. These people are pouring their hearts and souls into projects like this, making something they feel deep down inside is a great product that they're proud of. But here comes MovieGuyTroll69 to rip it to shreds because it isn't what HE would have
It's so easy for people to judge things. Everyone is a critic. Sure, Tomorrowland might not be a great movie (I haven't seen it yet, so maybe it's great), but people on the internet act like making a film (or any art for that matter) is easy. It's not. These people are pouring their hearts and souls into projects like this, making something they feel deep down inside is a great product that they're proud of. But here comes MovieGuyTroll69 to rip it to shreds because it isn't what HE would have done. Make something original and put it out there. And when you see how unnecessarily mean-spirited a person can be when they have the courage of anonymity on their side, you may think twice before bashing someone else.
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3:51PM on 05/20/2015

There is a difference between criticism and cynicism

What most of these comments are getting wrong is that neither of these guys are saying that they should be beyond criticism. What they are railing against are the knee-jerk context-less attacks that some people default into. You can criticize things in a tactful and intelligent manner without devolving into being a shitty or disrespectful person.
What most of these comments are getting wrong is that neither of these guys are saying that they should be beyond criticism. What they are railing against are the knee-jerk context-less attacks that some people default into. You can criticize things in a tactful and intelligent manner without devolving into being a shitty or disrespectful person.
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+3
3:47PM on 05/20/2015

Who's being cynical?

What's funny is they're both being cynical but saying anyone who doesn't like this is cynical...like what? Look, I wanna see this movie, and I will let the movie speak for itself. I don't think anyone WANTS this movie to be bad. But if it's bad, they'll react to it. It's that simple.
What's funny is they're both being cynical but saying anyone who doesn't like this is cynical...like what? Look, I wanna see this movie, and I will let the movie speak for itself. I don't think anyone WANTS this movie to be bad. But if it's bad, they'll react to it. It's that simple.
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3:51PM on 05/20/2015
They didn't say that anyone who likes this is cynical.
They didn't say that anyone who likes this is cynical.
3:52PM on 05/20/2015
whoops, obviously I meant anyone who doesn't like this...
whoops, obviously I meant anyone who doesn't like this...
+3
2:57PM on 05/20/2015
idiot
idiot
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2:41PM on 05/20/2015
I haven't seen the movie so I can't comment on whether it's good or bad. And I've only read one review of the film and that was here on Joblo.com and no offense to the site, but one review is hardly indicative of whether it's a good film or not.
Now, in reading Clooney's comments. I think he has a great insight into criticism and cynicism in today's age. Freedom of Speech is not freedom to say anything without consequence and we're all responsible for what we say. And today it's way too
I haven't seen the movie so I can't comment on whether it's good or bad. And I've only read one review of the film and that was here on Joblo.com and no offense to the site, but one review is hardly indicative of whether it's a good film or not.
Now, in reading Clooney's comments. I think he has a great insight into criticism and cynicism in today's age. Freedom of Speech is not freedom to say anything without consequence and we're all responsible for what we say. And today it's way too easy to avoid that responsibility when posting anonymously online (I am aware of the irony in posting this). Overall, it's a great point and yes it's true that fanboys are the biggest cynics of us all, and at the same time the biggest cowards of us all since they're the most prevalent in posting online anonymously. But regardless of what's said by whom and where, you have to stand by what you've done. So for Clooney to dismiss criticism/cynicism as "Fanboys are idiots" is unfair and just not owning up to your finished product. Even Affleck will tell you that Gigli and Daredevil were shit movies.

And now Lindelof, this guy is an idiot. Based on 1 review, he is 0 for 3 on his big budget movies. So far none of them have been widely accepted as good movies by the general movie going public or fanboys alike. Yet he always continues to dismiss the criticism as fanboys are being over-zealous and unfair. At a certain point he needs to realize that it's not us, it's him. And after three shitty movies, it's time for him to start realizing that people don't think he's a good writer.
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12:18AM on 05/21/2015
It's not just one review. Tomorrowland is sitting at 60% on RT with an average score of 6.1. That's not terrible, but it's definitely mediocre.

From the reviews, it's evident that Lindelof tried to pontificate too much on his political ideology in the film, and it came across boring and uninformed. It's a shame because the original teaser looked so freaking good.....
It's not just one review. Tomorrowland is sitting at 60% on RT with an average score of 6.1. That's not terrible, but it's definitely mediocre.

From the reviews, it's evident that Lindelof tried to pontificate too much on his political ideology in the film, and it came across boring and uninformed. It's a shame because the original teaser looked so freaking good.....
2:29PM on 05/20/2015

Always the victim, never owe up to your mistakes.

That's the current mindset of this generation. Especially in Hollywood. They don't learn jack.
That's the current mindset of this generation. Especially in Hollywood. They don't learn jack.
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3:46PM on 05/20/2015
What generation would that be? Since I'm pretty certain Clooney and Lindelof are from different generations, and they certainly aren't millenials.
What generation would that be? Since I'm pretty certain Clooney and Lindelof are from different generations, and they certainly aren't millenials.
2:29PM on 05/20/2015
The real problem is there is simply a vocal bunch who thinks "Fuck off and die" is an appropriate criticism.
The real problem is there is simply a vocal bunch who thinks "Fuck off and die" is an appropriate criticism.
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2:28PM on 05/20/2015
So if I go see the movie and don't like it I should just keep that to myself? Is that their plan?
So if I go see the movie and don't like it I should just keep that to myself? Is that their plan?
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2:43PM on 05/20/2015
Yes, it's only reasonable to post positive things about Clooney and Lindelof's body of work. Any negative criticism is just unfair treatment towards Lindelof and it's unwarranted.
Yes, it's only reasonable to post positive things about Clooney and Lindelof's body of work. Any negative criticism is just unfair treatment towards Lindelof and it's unwarranted.
2:28PM on 05/20/2015
Dumb. Just plain dumb.
Dumb. Just plain dumb.
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2:24PM on 05/20/2015
Is Lindelof blaming the fans again?
Is Lindelof blaming the fans again?
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12:57AM on 05/21/2015
Yah he is like Shakespeare but for the 25 century, we just can't understand him now because of our limited brain capacity.
Yah he is like Shakespeare but for the 25 century, we just can't understand him now because of our limited brain capacity.
2:24PM on 05/20/2015

You pretty much nailed it in the last couple sentences. We need to take ownership of our words?

Then you need to take ownership of your bad movie.
I've made bad movies myself (I would say 95% of mine are), and I'd be the first to say "this didn't work because ____". But Lindelof has dived behind the "oh it's just fanboys and people on the internet being negative" defense, every. time. For everything he's done from LOST and on. "I'm not the problem, it's the internet, that's the problem." Just get over yourself.
Then you need to take ownership of your bad movie.
I've made bad movies myself (I would say 95% of mine are), and I'd be the first to say "this didn't work because ____". But Lindelof has dived behind the "oh it's just fanboys and people on the internet being negative" defense, every. time. For everything he's done from LOST and on. "I'm not the problem, it's the internet, that's the problem." Just get over yourself.
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4:56PM on 05/20/2015
Some people deeply love Lindelofs work, most people hate it.
I've talked to a lot of people during the years about him (me being an old diehard Lost fan) - and he actually seem to be a rare example, a moviemaker that gets hate online and love in real life. A different kind of audience enjoys his work, not the modern "internet-users" audience. In many ways the brutal web-people are too smart and too cynical for him.

I for one say get over him. Stop all the endless nagging, it's getting old.
Some people deeply love Lindelofs work, most people hate it.
I've talked to a lot of people during the years about him (me being an old diehard Lost fan) - and he actually seem to be a rare example, a moviemaker that gets hate online and love in real life. A different kind of audience enjoys his work, not the modern "internet-users" audience. In many ways the brutal web-people are too smart and too cynical for him.

I for one say get over him. Stop all the endless nagging, it's getting old. Do we all want safe and perfect stuff like Josh Whedons work? I appreciate the variation.
2:22PM on 05/20/2015
Shuuuuuuuuuut uuuuuuuuuuuuuuup
Shuuuuuuuuuut uuuuuuuuuuuuuuup
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