Rant Du Jour: Why Rob from “High Fidelity” Sucks

Blowhard, Esq. writes:


We’re all arts sophisticates around here, right? We love the good things in life like pro wrestling, Michael Bay movies, and Mickey Spillane novels. We cultivate our refined taste and enjoy bantering with like-minded aesthetes. Ergo, you’d think I’d be in accordance with these lines from HIGH FIDELITY which nerds enjoy chanting as if it’s a maxim of Buddhist wisdom:

What really matters is what you like, not what you’re like. Books, records, films – these things *matter.* Call me shallow, but it’s the fuckin’ truth.

But no, I don’t agree with it, I think it’s absolute bullshit.

First, I’ve noticed that guys (it’s always guys) who quote this line almost invariably have dull, predictable taste. Oh, you like Paul Thomas Anderson and Cormac McCarthy? Well, gosh golly, so does nearly everyone else with a Filmstruck subscription. Second, even if their taste is great, I’d rather talk to someone with an interesting POV than someone who liked a particular list of things. Adopting a particular taste set is the easiest thing in the world. Third, notice how he uses the word “matters” twice but at no point tells us why it matters? You know why he doesn’t tell us? BECAUSE IT DOESNT FUCKING MATTER. Rule of thumb: whenever a person says something “matters” it almost invariably doesn’t. Also, that’s a nice rhetorical trick of blunting criticism by calling yourself “shallow” but it doesn’t make it any less true. Fourth, do they not notice that the protagonist of HIGH FIDELITY is an immature man boy? Why do they want to emulate that? Fifth, not to get all Godwin’s Law, but need I remind everyone that the Nazis loved Beethoven, Wagner, and Bruckner?

While whining about this on Facebook, Fabrizio added:

A dumb quote in that it presupposes that your cultural predilections have not only a moral dimension but a moral dimension that overrides all other considerations. This is basically a nerd’s rationalization of his assumed superiority. He has nothing to offer outside of his list of greatest breakup songs ever, so that’s all that matters. I like the right albums therefore I am.

Fellow UR scribe Enzo then observed that the real reason Rob is a moron who should be ignored is because he went back to Iben Hjejle, that bland third-rate Scandinavian Robin Wright doppleganger, instead of choosing the obviously superior Natasha Gregson Wagner.

About Blowhard, Esq.

Amateur, dilettante, wannabe.
This entry was posted in Books Publishing and Writing, Movies, Personal reflections and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Rant Du Jour: Why Rob from “High Fidelity” Sucks

  1. JV says:

    It should be said that Rob comes to realize that it’s not about what you like towards the end of the book and movie. That’s the main character arc in the story. I agree though, that Rob up until then would be insufferable in real life. I’ve known many Robs, actually. Hell, I was probably (definitely) a Rob during my early 20s.

    Liked by 1 person

    • JV says:

      Should also add, Wagner was certainly hotter and spicier, but would be a pain in the ass in the long run. Rob went for the stable wifey instead. Good move.

      And yeah, nerds misunderstand or just totally miss Rob’s growth and hone in on that quote. That’s the fault of the nerds, not the book/movie. IMO, of course.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. peterike says:

    James Bowman’s review of the film is quite good, I think.


  3. Zimriel says:

    I agree. I didn’t like Cusack’s douchecanoe when I first saw the movie and as a result, couldn’t finish it.

    Cusack himself, by the way, sucks as an actor. He can play only one role and it’s the same immature slackoff he played in “The Sure Thing”.


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