Movie lovers and friends,
I begin with my Toshiba computer, my iPhone, a glass of citrus mango pineapple juice, and a seat on the back porch of my parents house.
I am not going to contemplate the struggles of life, the qualms of our current American society and culture, or the fears of maturing into adulthood. But rather, I seek to comment and reflect on a piece of our vast culture in terms one of my passions…film. Film is much more than a leisure activity or a thing to do on a rainy day. (Don’t get me wrong, I turn to movies during a storm and when I want to relax). But there is more than meets the eye (pun intended).
Film is obviously an art form and a style of social commentary. Themes in films reflect our culture’s current struggles and tribulations. Films reflect our definition of love, beauty, triumph, family, and more. In effect, the movie industry has created its own class and group of individuals who make an astonishing amount of money and achieve levels of fame and glamour that often have taken the lives of many of the true artists in the industry. Movies are meant to be enjoyed and to stir emotion. Whether you cry during Forrest Gump or laugh from the actions of the Minions during Despicable Me. So, movies are more than mere entertainment, they are an experience.
I recently was listening to NPR and a segment on the role of trailers and how they have become “too long” or give away all of the good parts of a comedy. But the more profound issue addressed in this particular broadcast was the importance of trailers to the financial well-being of the movie theaters themselves. A guest during the segment noted that trailers have become the main source of revenue for theaters across the country. Theaters are selling Hollywood in order to pay the bills. (Let’s face it…trailers are beginning to dominate the realm of the movie going experience. And don’t get me wrong…trailers can be an art in themselves.) The key issue noted was that theaters were selling Hollywood…not the experience of movie going. Theaters should be creating an experience for the audience. Yes, the movies create their own experience for the audience, but the theaters should be supplementing that.
In attempt to not lose my passion and my knowledge and skills gained as a film minor during college, I am creating this blog to make up for the lack of experience so many of our movie theaters are failing to provide. I am trying to be a part of the experience and create more of an experience for movie goers. Whether my words are read or not is not the point. It is to revive a culture that is fading or that is hiding in the smaller, more valuable art cinemas that are sprinkled throughout our country.
Remember to be part of the experience, to create it for yourself. Talk about the themes, motifs, dialogue, symbols, etc that were in the movie you just watched. Reflect on the experience you had during that movie, for there is value in thought and reflection.
I end with my glass now empty. My father to my left practicing classical guitar. My mother sitting on my right reading her book and our dog lying on the porch gazing at and sniffing the world around him swept up in his leisurely curiosity.
’til next time,