Wednesday, May 18, 2011 | By: Brianna

Take Me Out to the Movies

Q: So.  What do you think about movies?

A: I love movies.  A lot.  Mostly because I grew up with them.  When I was little, maybe I was around 8, or maybe a little younger, I can't remember, my family used to go to my grandparents' lake house at Little Swan Lake.  I remember it being the most exciting part of my summer because we would all pile into the car for the long drive, my brother and I each getting a separate bench in our family's gray mini van.  Though I don't remember what time we left, we always got to the lake house in the dark because we'd have to be careful so we didn't trip over the gravel driveway or the shallow steps leading up to the door.  How this relates to movies?  Well, my uncle had left his boxed set of the Star Wars trilogy at the lake house, and my mother (being the nerd she is) introduced us to Star Wars very early in our lives.  I remember sitting on the floor in front of the TV watching Darth Vader enter the Rebel ship for the first time in Star Wars: A New Hope.  If I remember correctly, the carpet was sulfur yellow.

But it didn't stop there.  My mother continued to introduce us (us being myself and my brother) to movies that we still hold dear now.  Mostly trilogies, and mostly from the 80s, bringing us to Back to the Future and Indiana Jones.

Part of the reason (I think) I'm so drawn to movies is also because when I was so young, we went to my grandparents' house a lot.  My grandparents on my father's side.  There in the basement of cold tile, stale cigarette smoke and the laundry room was the most extensive collection of movies I had ever encountered.  Right next to Blockbuster or the little drug store that used to be down the street.  In those days they were all VHS (my grandpa has since then updated to DVD), and I remember going down there with my brother and just looking through all of them.  Mom would come with and we would pick out movies that we wanted to see.  That's how we ended up seeing Indiana Jones and Back to the Future, if I'm not mistaken.  We would take the movies we wanted to borrow upstairs to Grandma, and she wrote down the titles so we wouldn't forget that we had them.  She said that it was like we were renting the movies and we had to remember to bring them back.  And my grandma has the smallest handwriting I know.  Aside from my one friend, but that's another story.  My grandma's handwriting looks literally like a spider strung out its web and curled it around just a little bit to form words.  So basically my brother and I couldn't read it back in the day, but we trusted her.

When I got older, I continued to re-watch the same three trilogies and branch out into other 80s classics including (but not limited to): Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Ghostbusters and The Blues Brothers.  And by the time I got to high school, I considered myself at least semi-knowledgeable on all things movie related.  Well, movie quote related.  As it turns out, I wasn't the hotshot that I thought I was, so I needed to watch more movies, leading to my Watch Before I Die list of movies.  By senior year of high school, I was in a Cinematography class.  Not only were we taught how to make movies and clap the clapboard at the appropriate moments, but we learned about the elements of cinematography and what (artistically) makes a good movie.  I absorbed as much as I could in that single semester, and now I  can't watch a pretty movie (like American Beauty or The Hangover, bet you never thought you'd see those two movies mentioned together...) without gasping, "CINEMATOGRAPHY!"  I kid you not.  I do that.  A lot.  I'm sure my friends get annoyed.  Ah well.

What's weird is that those people who seem closest to the movie fanatics in my life are actually the furthest away from movies themselves.  My grandma, for instance, doesn't watch movies.  She also doesn't read books, but that's another thing entirely.  My dad also doesn't really watch movies.  This is weird to me because if my parents were all about movies, I would be all over them so that I had something to relate to them about.  That, and my mom likes movies so much, I don't understand...did my dad ever take my mom to the movies?!  I wonder...

Q: So what was the last movie you watched?

A: Branching out from my usual 80s movie/chick flick/Netflix Instant Watch, I watched King Kong.  That's right, the 1933 original.  Because I'm just that awesome.

Thank you, Google!
I was watching it for research, actually.  And I have determined that the Loch Ness Monster only appears for a good 5 minutes, tops.  The movie itself was pretty good, this coming from a girl who was raised on decent special effects mostly hailing from the 1980s and being based on Star Wars.  Anyway, the battle against the T-Rex could have been shortened, and Ann Darrow REALLY needed to stop screaming for 10 seconds, but it was definitely worth watching.  I enjoyed it.

"You know what your problem is, it's that you haven't seen enough movies - all of life's riddles are answered in the movies."
- Steve Martin


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