The elite Telluride critic community feels it has no choice but to worship Sarah Polley‘s Women Talking. Politically speaking there’s no upside to not praising it. Naysayers will have to suffer some degree of rejection, and it’s just safer to play along.

I said the other day that Polley’s film is nicely handled as far as it goes, but sitting through it feels confining and interminable. For me, it was almost totally about waiting for it to end.

Others feel differently, of course.

I was listening yesterday afternoon to a knowledgable journalist who believes Women Talking has picked up a headwind and will become a major Best Picture contender down the road.

Maybe, but over the last couple of days I’ve spoken to a pair of Telluride pass-holders (a wealthy 70something guy and a woman in her early 40s) who’ve told me they hated it. I’m not saying that’s the prevailing view among non-journos here, but it’s certainly a view.

I’m also personally upset and resentful about the 54% Metacritic rating for Sam MendesEmpire of Light, an exquisite film that works so beautifully and movingly, and which is 10 to 15 times better than Belfast. So far three sorehead critics have lowered Empire of Light‘s Metacritic standing to the mid 50s — TheWrap‘s Tomris Laffly, IndieWire‘s David Ehrlich and Los Angeles Times critic Justin Chang.

It’s going to be a much brighter story when Empire of Light opens and joins the general screening circuit…trust me. It’s easily one of the best films of the year, and far more emotionally satisfying than I’d expected. I went in a skeptic, but came away converted.