“Shall we watch a movie?” “Yeah what do you want to watch?” “Mmm, something where I don’t have to think”. I’ve had this conversation about five hundred times, and, inevitably, the final decision always turns about to be something where Rachel McAdams gets the man she wants. No, this isn’t an attack on Rachel McAdams. This is an attack on the vilification of films where you do have to think. Films that take some concentration. Films that require you not too be refreshing Instagram every 5 minutes. Everyone’s played that game, me included. I fully understand how tempting it can be to half-watch Schindlers List whilst decorating your future home on Pinterest. And yes, wrought iron gates would look great on the French summer home you plan on owning, but oops, you’ve missed half the movie and you have no idea what’s going on. But the solution isn’t to stick to films where Paul Rudd didn’t seem like the right guy in the beginning, but by the end he turned out to be everything you never knew you wanted. What’s the point of watching movies if they’re always mindless. This may seem a tad hyperbolic, but it’s true.
But then, yes, there is a place for your Dear John’s and, yeah I’ll say it, Mean Girls for the 1000th time. And don’t get me wrong, Sleepless? You’ve got mail? THE BEST but alas I feel like there’s more to the film watching than The Notebook. It’s like only ever eating Honey Cheerios. Super easy, super nice, deceivingly bad for you, and you won’t shit for a week. There’s so much interesting stuff out there, and not enough hours in a lifetime to watch it all. Why constrict yourself to a 90 minute window where everything will be resolved and you never question your own humanity.
And anyway, what’s wrong with thinking? Thinking’s the best. It’s not like watching these movies is mediation and you’re gaining internal peace by switching off your mind. I’ve been conflicted over Gravity, because I didn’t see it when it came out, but the reviews were really good and it was supposedly the game changing film of the year. But then, everyone hated it and said it was boring and arduous. I watched it the other day, and you know what, it was pretty damn good. I liked that it was slow and had a strange arch. It was interesting and captivating and Sandra was, as always, mystifying. I’ll try and watch one of the films engineered to make girls cry and can’t help but let the plot holes and melodrama give me a burning unrest that consumes me, and suddenly I’m the heartless cynic? Sorry no. I don’t enjoy being the grinch of rom coms. (on a real though, I enjoy it a little bit)
I feel as though I’ve lost track here. So all I’ll say is, I don’t like that the world is the way it is. Basically.