Armond White of the New York Press is, without question, the most hated film critic in America. Just visit Rotten Tomatoes, and you will find a whole slew of hipsters complaining about his taste in film and posting comments about banning him as a critic (whatever that means). You’ll see the same old joke posted over and over again in various forms: “If Armond White hated it, that means it’s going to be great.” It’s annoying and, well, not funny because none of these trolls actually take the time to read his reviews. If they did, they wouldn’t be posting such silly things.
Now, I’m not saying that White isn’t sometimes arrogant and doesn’t sometimes take advantage of opportunities to piss his readers off, but after reading hundreds of his reviews, I’ve come to the conclusion that he’s smart, passionate and insightful. Plus, as anyone could see if they actually read his reviews, he always makes a good case for his opinion.
As of right now The Social Network–which I haven’t seen because I missed the press screening (I was sick)–is sitting at 100% on Rotten Tomatoes with a total of 52 reviews. And readers, as well as other critics, are already talking about White, and how his review is going to ruin the perfect score–assuming that he’s going to pan it. It’s what happen with Toy Story 3 and before that District 9, a scenario that resulted in like 500-something negative comments.
What these people don’t know is: White’s review is already posted, at New York Press. He gave the film a negative review, and it simply hasn’t made its way to RT. When it does–just watch–there will be an uproar. There will be tons of comments on RT and write-ups about the situation all over the internet.
Personally, I find this all to be sad. First, it’s sad that people care so much about Rotten Tomatoes and the movie getting 100% on that silly site. Second, it’s sad because it was predictable–not because White is contrarian, but because his previous reviews show that he doesn’t like David Fincher’s work. Last, it’s sad because 95% of the people who complain won’t even read his review in its entirety. Like I said, I haven’t seen the movie yet, so I can’t say whether I agree or disagree with White’s assessment. I can, however, say that he provides an interesting perspective of the film that I think all people who see it should at the very least consider.
You can read White’s review here.