Earlier today I posted my 82nd review, a fine number to celebrate. You see, if I had decided only to review the Best Picture winners (like similar blogs with similar names), I’d be finished and celebrating by tossing the DVD player out the window. Ah, but I’m not even a quarter of the way there and I’ll admit, there have been some days where I’m tired of watching movies. I’ve never said that before in my life (course, I’ve never watched nine movies a week for three months straight.) But I keep going and I’m proud that I’ve made it this far. There’s no turning back.
Now, reviewing movies is a dream job for me, but I’ve learned it’s not always easy. The easiest films to write about are those you either love or hate. A rant just makes me feel good, though I’ll never rant as well as Jeremy Clarkson, who can sound eloquently bitter if you handed him the newspaper with the wrong hand. Gushing over a film can be just as fun, but there’s this need to be more careful since the film has had such a positive influence. You can’t just toss a flower in the ground because you’re excited to see it grow, it needs more care. Then there are those in the middle, the “meh” shoulder shruggers. In my case with Oscar nominees, I’m not always sure what to do with these meh-films. I usually give them their allotted respect, a written pat on the back and say why it was just a meh.
The big risk about reviewing is simply putting your opinions in plain view. I got an essay/comment about Deanna Durbin because I said her singing in Three Smart Girls was pointless and slowed the story. I respect that dialogue and have always encouraged it, as long as it’s not spiteful. Right now Roger Ebert is under a lot of fire because he’s bold enough to write his opinions on more than just film. Mainly this tweet has fueled the fire: “Kids who wear American Flag t-shirts on 5 May should have to share a lunchroom table with those who wear a hammer and sickle on 4 July.” It’s gotten so bad that people have been posting remarks calling Ebert “a commie” and wishing him death on his twitter. Thankfully his quick wit and loyal fan base keep these cyber-haters from getting the upperhand. He’s become a great model for all writers, not just movie reviewers.
Writing always has that risk, you’re letting the thoughts in your head lie naked for the world to see. I guess film reviews are safer than more heated opinions, but I still doubt myself at times. Would admitting that I often feel panic in the shower because of Psycho make you think I’m crazy? Or would the fact that I cried during that aging montage in UP ruin or heighten my credibility? Would I suddenly get the stink-eye at theaters if I told you I enjoy the cheap thrill of sneaking in my own can of soda and then opening it good and loud during that silence just before the film starts? Would being the only critic in the world who enjoys 3-D be the end of my days? I’m sure Mr. Ebert would wag his finger and tweet “For shame” while I slink back behind my 3-D glasses.
I get about 10 hits a day. I might have a few loyal readers and I thank you. And for the ones who stumble on here searching for porn (my two favorite searches have been “18th century beauties” and “dr. strangelove drinking game”), thanks for dropping by.
Only 388 reviews to go!