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‘Civil War’ should be a controversial movie. But no one should be upset about its marketing.

A scene from the 2024 movie Civil WarAn (actual) scene from A24’s “Civil War” — not featured in the posters that are sparking controversy.

A24

  • The new movie “Civil War” is controversial — some people love it and others hate it.
  • But some people also say they’re upset about “Civil War’s” marketing.
  • These people need to find a better use of their time.

Have you seen “Civil War,” the new movie about, um, a civil war in the US?

I have, and I loved it. Your mileage may vary — different people have different problems with it, and they’re talking about it. Which is fine. I like talking about it, too.

But here’s a supposed controversy about the movie you can most definitely ignore: Its marketing campaign, which has Upset Some People On The Internet.

Some savvier readers will stop reading here because Some People On The Internet are always upset and if you read about everything that makes them upset, you’ll never have time to do anything else.

But if you’re still with me (thank you!), here’s the deal: See these evocative images?

Well, 1) none of them are actually from the movie, and 2) supposedly, A24, the indie movie studio that made “Civil War,” used AI to help generate them.

And to address those criticisms, I’d say 1) who cares? And 2) who cares?

But if you’re still here: 1) It’s weird that people who like movies from A24, whose brand is “arty but still accessible to lots of people” (think “Ex Machina” and “Midsommar”) — are upset about movie marketing that’s not 100% based on actual movie footage.

When did that literalism become a requirement? Is there a new law, or even a new ethos, that I missed? Because it certainly wasn’t the case in the past.

I think the best complaint you could make might be, “Hey, these posters make it look like it’s a video game-like movie featuring combat all over the United States, but, actually, the movie only (SPOILER ALERT) has one big video game-like combat scene, and it’s in Washington, DC.”

So, OK, then. If you want to get some sense of what “Civil War” is like, you can just stick to the trailer, which does feature Actual Scenes from the movie:

And 2) If we’re going to have a real discussion about AI and how it should and shouldn’t be used in art and commerce, we gotta grow up a bit.

AI may definitely be an issue for both movie-makers and movie consumers, and we’ll be talking about it for a long time. But A24 obviously didn’t create the marketing campaign and art from scratch — at best/worst, the team that created it may have used AI engines to help generate some of the images. But I’m using a MacBook to type this instead of a hot metal typesetter, and you’re reading it on a screen instead of newsprint. It’s going to be OK.

PS: If you do see this movie — it is very intense, and it may not be for you, and that’s fine — make sure you see it in a theater, and one that has great sound. I’ve never heard sound like this in a movie.

Read the original article on Business Insider
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