In the wake of recent troubling world events, including the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, our new Film & TV Editor Tom Hitchenor is inspired to discuss the importance of The Florida Project, opinion and criticism.

Last night I saw The Florida ProjectFor the uninitiated, Sean Barker’s film is a look into lower class struggles in the looming presence of the sparkly dream world of Disneyland. It is, undeniably, a visually stunning film with staggering performances. Although Willem Dafoe snagged a Best Supporting Actor nomination, it is newcomer Brooklyn Prince who is spellbindingly real and authentic.

However, beyond this, I felt the movie was unfocused and lacked structure, meandering through to a nowhere near satisfying conclusion. This is my opinion, and my right to express it is something that must be protected. I’ve looked at other reviews and have seen top mark ratings across the board, and this is very puzzling to me. Am I completely wrong? Am I missing something? Is my opinion not valid against the vast weight of plaudits this film generated?

Some would argue yes, particularly in other societies and cultures where dissidence is not tolerated. In a week where the Saudi Arabian government finally acknowledged the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, where the power of opinion and the necessity of educated critical thought cost a man his life, it is more important than ever to speak out about what you think is right; even if it is considered against the status quo.

Here at Miro, our name derives from the Latin for “wonder”, and our mission statement is to “advocate forward-thinking throughout the arts. We look to the future. We keep our imaginations sharp. We live to wonder.” As the new Film and TV Editor, I look forward to protecting these core principles and thinking differently, despite the weight of popular opinion.

Although it is not a matter of life and death in this circumstance, the importance of the dissenting voice is needed more than ever in the current climate. So sorry The Florida Project, despite your undoubted success, I would only give you a 3 Star review.