I am a lover of movies, guys. I know. So original. Though I may have chosen a “serious” major in college (the tutelage I received in journalism and political science has served me well in my career at ACN’s News Night), I used every elective I was allotted to reserve spots in film and acting courses. This allowed me to expand my knowledge of the cinematic arts beyond mere rom-coms and delve into the more important film works throughout history. One time I even drew a stick figure comic strip of my favorite scene from Citizen Kane, people! This was a life-altering education.
That being said, there are plenty of excellent movies I watched for credits and for fun that I could easily watch again and again. I categorize these films under “Movies That Will Make You Late For Stuff When They’re On TV.” Examples of these include, but are not limited to the following: Goodfellas, The Departed, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Titanic (shut up – no one can resist Jack Dawson), A League of Their Own, Gone with the Wind, As Good As It Gets, and Rear Window. I will sit and watch Tom Hanks pee for 20 minutes and miss a lunch date with my grandma if I have to. You get the idea.
Then there are the films that are incredibly well done–from the acting to the directing and cinematography–and yet I know I will never watch them again. For various reasons. No matter how good they were or how much I enjoyed them. You know what I mean? No? Well, allow me to elaborate.
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This movie was just as heartbreaking as everyone hyped it up to be. For the first time ever, Mariah Carey didn’t annoy me and Gabourey Sidibe hasn’t given an acting role a fraction of the amount of effort she put into this film. But… I just can’t with this one. All the feelings.
2. Black Swan
I feel the need to disclose the fact that my sister and I saw this movie with our dad. OUR DAD. Who covered up my little sister’s eyes during the rug-munching scene with his hand. So to be fair, that may very well have scarred me enough to never want to see this again. Either that or Barbara Hershey’s veneers, I’m not sure. Anyway, I can appreciate the dedication of Natalie Portman and Mila Kunis and the crazy/beautiful direction of Darren Aronofsky, but it gave me a headache.
3. Les Miserables
Oh good, I’m the first theatre-ish person to hate this movie. Sorry not sorry. Again, Anne Hathaway gave a great five-minute performance and the live singing aspect of this deserves more than a few golf claps. But it’s about forty minutes too long and it kinda ruined the stage version for me. Ain’t nobody got time for that.
4. Citizen Kane
I know I’m supposed to say that this is the greatest film of all time. I know this because it’s been ranked as such on many lists and it smells of rich mahogany and leather-bound books. Orson Welles, I tip my hat to you and Rosebud. But once was enough for me.
5. The Social Network
Welp Jesse Eisenberg is actually kind of a dick in real life, so now this performance is moot. Mad love to Aaron Sorkin, I truly enjoyed this film when it came out. But now that Justin Timberlake is dangerously close to overexposure and Rooney Mara went on to go Fifty Shades of Cray in a much better movie, I’m over this one.
6. Romeo + Juliet
I watched this in seventh grade because LEO and never watched it again. I appreciate the effort that goes into memorizing Shakespeare and looking at beautiful people, but… ZZZzzzzZZZZ. ‘Nuff said.
I just feel like I’ll confuse myself by watching it again. Maybe now that I’m old and suffering from my own memory loss, I should watch it from end-to-beginning? This movie was on my “Intro to Film” syllabus, though, which I thought was pretty cool.
I rented this movie during a near-breakup to distract myself and I ended up loving it for an hour, passing out in a haze of wine and tears, waking up to see it was still on, then passing out again. I might give this one another chance. But probably not.
9. Sling Blade
Ugh. UGHHHH. The pain of my heart and the wrenching of my gut are almost too much to bear here. Say what you will about Billy Bob Thornton, but he’s effing amazing here. The characters in this story are, sadly, so realistic you forget it’s a movie and that they’re all just acting. I have a VERY sensitive soft spot for “underdogs” and this one hits a nerve. I always skip over whatever channel it’s on.
Yes, I know this officially makes me the worst. It’s Spielberg! But hear me out. I saw this movie when I was very little and loved it. I loved E.T. so much that my parents bought me an E.T. doll with Velcro fingers to carry around attached to my person at all times. But then nighttime would fall and I’d peer over at ol’ E.T. and his googly E.T. eyes staring at me in the dark and FREAK THE HELL OUT. My dad had to put E.T. in the garage at night from then on and I couldn’t sit through the movie for about twenty years after that. Now I can, but it’s too emotional for me (“Elliioottt” is the new “STELLAAAAA”) so I usually choose not to. Whew!