Life Has Changed, Film Hasn’t

Life Has Changed, Film Hasn't

Photo: Warner Bros.

“Here’s looking at you, kid.”
Whether you’ve watched Casablanca or not, this quote rings a familiar bell for many. Movies influence every aspect of modern pop culture. This holds true for a wide variety of topics such as fashion, books and even food.
There are so many iconic movies that are talked about and mentioned every day, but it seems that there simply isn’t enough time to catch up on them all. Or, at least, there wasn’t.
When school first closed due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, I quickly realized that I would have a lot more time on my hands than I’d know what to do with. As a result, I made it my mission to catch up on the movies I’d been meaning to watch, but had been putting off, as well as well renowned movies and cult classics.
So far, I’ve watched a movie every day for 63 days straight.
To make things a little more interesting, I eventually made a game out of it and involved my family, starting with a theme every week that the movies chosen had to fit into. But after a short while, the theme system proved fruitless and restricting, so I printed out the American Film Institute’s “AFI’s 100 Years, 100 Movies” list and have been following since.
I’m not saying that you should watch a movie every day, but I also wouldn’t be so quick to judge the activity as a waste of time. For those interested in careers in communications, acting, film, writing or even journalism, these films can be essential knowledge.
Becoming cultured is as easy as digging out your DVD and or VCR collections, or researching classics on the streaming services you are subscribed to.
The only hard part is stepping out of your comfort zone and watching movies that you never previously imagined you would watch. I’ve been pleasantly surprised by numerous films that I didn’t want to watch, and even some I now rank among my favorites.
To get you started along your film expedition, I have some personal recommendations. If you’re a crime fan, I would suggest movies such as Primal Fear and The Usual Suspects, and if you’re brave, go for Se7en.
If you like war stories, some classics are Inglorious Basterds and Enemy at the Gates.
For lovers of romance, I’d go with Gone with the Wind, Breakfast at Tiffany’s and The English Patient.
If you gravitate towards “weirder” things, then you should be sure to try out Donnie Darko and Being John Malkovich.
One category I highly suggest that a lot of people don’t usually consider is movie adaptations of books. They allow you to understand the basic idea of a book without spending jaw-dropping hours reading.
They made a handful of good ones in the 90s, such as Clueless (a modernization of Jane Austen’s Emma), Cruel Intentions (a modernization of the french play/book Dangerous Liaisons) and Fight Club.
For the avid movie watcher, I recommend the classics. The best way to find classic movies is asking friends or family what their favorite movie is. Your parents and grandparents are great people to ask, you can also find out more about a person by their favorite movies. It’s also a great way to make connections and reach out to people while stuck inside.
If you don’t know where to start, why not watch one of the most influential movies of our time, Citizen Kane, considered by many to be the greatest movie of all time.
When you watch classic movies, you’ll be surprised how many cultural references you pick up on that used to go straight over your head.