“Over the past few days I’ve noticed something worth commenting on,” writes Spoutblog‘s Karina Longworth. “A number of writers, including Keith Uhlich, Michael Joshua Rowin, Nick Schager, Leo Goldsmith and Daniel Kasman have written reviews which incorporate the criticism that Steven Soderbergh‘s Che is ‘dispassionate’, that Soderbergh has a ‘disposable, inconsequential attitude’ towards his subject, that the whole thing amounts to a ‘prolonged and wearying exercise in disinterest.’
“I’m sure there are more examples out there, but I think the five of them plus me are enough for a focus group. All six of us not only write for what could be called ‘alternative’ publications, but we’re all in our 20s or early 30s — evidence that the ‘new voices, with new perspectives’ that Some Came Running‘s Glenn Kenny cites are in fact almost completely united in our ‘exasperating” take on Che.
“Che’s key defenders, Longworth writes, “are Kenny, J. Hoberman and Amy Taubin — all veteran critics and our seniors by several years.” What, I don’t count?
“Which is not to say that the old guard is wrong just because they’re the old guard, just as I hope no one is really shaking a fist in the air at ‘these kids these days.’ But I do think there may be something significant to the fact that the divide is breaking down this way. Are younger critics frustrated (or just bored) with Che because for the most part, we don’t bring an emotional, historical or intellectual relationship to its subject to the viewing experience? Or are we just braindead children with the attention spans of infants? Or both?”