It’s not a secret that film critic Armond White — known for “provocative and idiosyncratic film criticism” (and terrible taste) — not liked. But during last week’s New York Film Critics Circle awards ceremony, he went a bit too far, allegedly heckling 12 Years a Slave director Steve McQueen.
“You’re an embarrassing doorman and garbage man!” he shouted from the audience at the director accepting his award, then denied it — “The allegations are flat out untrue!” — despite numerous eyewitnesses.
The NYFCC has made its decision. Armond White, former NYFCC chairman, has been expelled.
His legacy? Here are some highlights of his criticism: Best Foreign Film-award winning 4 Months 3 Weeks and 2 Days about illegal abortions in 1980s Romania is “a fad based on liberal self-reproach; a hangover from what Susan Sontag criticized as Americans’ ‘triumphalist national self-regard.'” Milk, a biopic of assassinated gay rights activist and politician Harvey Milk is “a silly …celebration of an ambitious pol.” Wall-E is full of “ugly, end-of-history cynicism.” Transporter 3 is “better than” than The Dark Knight which is for “impressionable teenagers.” Clockers is all “40 acres and a bunch of bull.” Oh, and yes, Inception “proves this is Nolan’s moment—a beginning-of-the-end moment for film culture, ha, ha—because it’s conceived to amuse an era hungry for hokum and a geek audience who, after his gross The Dark Knight pulled in $500 million, is primed for more baroque fantasia.” But boy, did he love Grown-Ups 2!
White continues to deny that he heckled McQueen and it’s sad and hilarious to see some of his fellow film critics continuously feeding the mini-media-fire of this very insular scandal. Even critics hate critics.
In any case, Armond White is a professional troll. This is basically a promotion. It adds a contrarian edge to his babble. Wow. So rebel.