Hello, we recently turned twenty. That means we've been around as long as "Gunsmoke" was. That means we're old enough to play Aunt May in the next Spider-Man reboot. That means if you started watching a Hobbit movie when we started it would just now be wrapping up. Of course, Hobbit movies didn't exist then; them's were halcyon days.
I've said it before, but the true birth of FILM FREAK CENTRAL was probably in 2001, when Walter Chaw accepted my invitation to join the site. His critical acumen and indefatigability were and continue to be humbling. My perception of what this place could be was also rejiggered in 1999 or thereabouts, when friend and sometime-contributor Vincent Suarez got me a subscription to the digest-sized magazine VIDEO WATCHDOG, a.k.a. "The Perfectionist's Guide to Video." It was tacit permission to nerd out about aspect ratios, alternate versions, video formats...all that dorky stuff. Not to mention genre movies! VIDEO WATCHDOG stopped producing new issues last October, twenty-seven years into its run. "After trying many creative ways to generate sales to compensate for newsstand losses and lack of advertising support, rising shipping and postage costs, and a depressed economy," wrote publishers Tim and Donna Lucas, "it is simply no longer possible to keep VIDEO WATCHDOG moving forward." To paraphrase a eulogy by one Bertram Cooper, they were astronauts.
A lot of our early inspirations have folded over the last two decades. A lot of excellent film sites have come and gone in that time as well, and I wish we could afford to take in all of their talented refugees. Certainly, FILM FREAK CENTRAL itself has become harder to maintain with age and its attendant interventions, and your recent donations and Patreon contributions did nothing less than incentivize us to keep marching towards this milestone anniversary. I think we may have plateaued in terms of popularity--after nearly a quarter century, you have the audience you have--and my damnable pride won't let me publish the kind of click-bait that makes for a breadwinner these days. (Others in the field: remember that when a publicist asks you to post their trailer, the correct response is "How much?" Because they are asking you to place an ad.)
So thank you to our benefactors, and to our readers in general for giving our therapeutic ramblings a destination. Thank you to FFC writers past and present, for tilting at windmills with me and habitually raising the bar, even if it's well past the point that I, personally, could ever hope to reach it. I admit I had more fanfare and self-indulgence planned for this occasion, but these are melancholy times; I feel we should just count our blessings and move on.
Please note this article was inconsequentially revised on 6/14/17