I check the Rotten Tomatoes website once a week. It lets me know without having to read a single review whether a movie is worth watching and in less than thirty seconds of my time.
And occasionally they will interview a director, or an actor. This week they asked Kathryn Bigelow her top 5 favourite movies.
Kathryn Bigelow directed the Hurt Locker, which right now seems to be one of the best reviewed movies of the summer, second only to UP and one of the movies that created some serious buzz at the Toronto film festival. Plus, she directed Near Dark, a spectacular, vampire flick.
Her list is terrific, but the film that jumped out at me is The Terminator. She calls it a gamechanger.
And for the time it was. Go back to 1984 when the movie was released and for the time, the tension, the special effects, the storytelling, it was a movie that raised the bar for all sci fi and thrillers.
I was thinking about what my gamechangers are in romance. I know for sure, and this is going back a bit, the Anita Blake series was a gamechanger for the paranormal genre. I know they're technically urban fantasy, but they had tense plots and some amazing sexual tension and I do think they started the urban fanstasy craze, and then the series fell off the rails, but before it did, man, those books were great reads.
The JR Ward series felt like a gamechanger, in terms of connected books, secondary plot lines, and some intricate world building. For me, those books have changed the way I approach plotting.
And then in historicals, you had Sherry Thomas and Joanna Bourne writing these incredible historicals with intelligent, non-perfect heroines and scenarios that couldn't be set further from a regency ballroom, making the historical a hot commodity again.
To me a game changer raises the bar, creates new standards of what works, and smart writers pay attention. Not that we'll always agree about which books were gamechangers, but I like being challenged by better books, more imaginative storylines, better characterization. I like to see how far we can push this genre and those books usually spark some serious creative thinking and some great drunk writer discussions.
I know I've left a lot of books out of this discussion, but would love to hear if anyone has any other books that they feel are gamechangers.