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Michael Phillips’s Passive-Aggressive “Director Gives…” Slow-Burns

In response to Michael Phillips’s 769‑word review of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire on Chicago Tribune,0,3107407.column

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The undertone of contempt is palpable and ever present in Michael Phillips’s “Director gives ‘Hunger Games’ franchise and heroine a solid score ***“ 

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There just seems no satisfying Mr. Phillips. Regardless of the subject’s potential, and its capacity to deliver on lofty expectations, the author refuses to give respect where it is due. It’s as if the subject personally wounded him in the past and he still harbors a deep grudge. An author should always approach their writing with unbiased objectivity, no matter what personal qualms they may have. Sadly, Phillips fails this task, and in doing so, demonstrates a startling lack of professionalism.

To be fair, Phillips relays general acknowledgement that the subject delivers a satisfactory level of intrigue and drama. However, it is clear that more praise could have, and should have, been relayed. The expectation for one so esteemed as Mr. Phillips is high, considering his solid reputation. And to deliver something as sub-par as this is a black mark on his record and an embarrassment to his peers.

Further evidence of his begrudging stance is his critique of extremely trivial aspects, and embellishing them to be much larger factors than they are in reality. It is uncalled for, and unwarranted, and the reader will no doubt be repulsed by these petty jabs.

It is a dark day indeed when literary giants such as Phillips produce rhetoric that conveys the maturity of a toddler. One would do well to avoid this as they would a spoiled child’s pleas for attention.    

Quality of Writing Quality of Argument Spoiler Avoidance Presentation