The “Critical Focus Exchange” will pay unemployed movie critics $100 per movie to participate in focus group screenings, reports The Wrap.
Although the CFE’s parent company said that they had “no agenda to employ out-of-work critics,” they do seem to be providing a service that goes beyond their clients’ needs. Movie critics get to see their professional expertise boiled down to questions such as the following:
* Would you definitely recommend to your readers?
* Does this movie have awards potential?
* Is this movie appropriate for festivals, mainstream movie houses or indie houses?
* Who are your favorite characters?
While this development is understandably a little distasteful to some critics, others were able to find positive aspects, even aside from the $100:
[Wall Street Journal critic Joe] Morganstern, while skeptical, found the concept oddly heart-warming.
“I can’t resist saying I’m touched that people want our opinions these days, ” he said. “It’s the best news of the day.”
Also included in The Wrap’s account: a list of 55 out-of-work critics.