Bitch About It

Don’t forget to enter my giveaway by commenting on this post! You could win bitchin’ stuff.

In ‘Bitch About It,’ I want to hear what you have to say! Especially since I usually don’t have a clue.

In the last edition of Bitch About It, I asked you all where you got your movie recommendations.  And the answers surprised me a bit.  It seems the majority of you rely on your fellow bloggers for recommendations.  Check out that post and all the comments right here.

The question I have for you all this week is this:

Is there a film that, for the first time, taught you movies be much more than just casual entertainment–a ‘gateway’ film we’ll call it–that eventually led to your adult obsession with the medium?  What was it, and what about it caught your attention?

When I was sixteen, and a junior in high school in a small rural town in Idaho, an HBO original movie came on TV called Wit starring Emma Thompson.  Thompson played an intelligent, but emotionally dead university professor.  She had cancer and was rapidly dying with no hope of a cure and spent her short time in her hospital bed remembering the times when she was cruel and showed no mercy to her students, and thinking about how all she wanted was some human contact now, of which she had one.  The movie is sad as shit.  But I liked it, and remember being amazed at how good Emma Thompson was.  I jumped on our dial-up AOL to learn more about the film, and from that moment, I was hooked on the medium.  I knew there must be more fantastic material that I wouldn’t hear of if I didn’t make the effort.  Wit didn’t end up being a favorite of mine (although Mike Nichols directed it, and his next film Closer is), but it certainly paved the way for me to find those that did.

In this edition of BAI (and in future editions I think), I thought I’d ask a few of my fellow bloggers to answer the question du jour.  Here’s what they had to say:

It’s probably not surprising given the people in our age range (late 20s/early 3os), but Quentin Tarantino played a large part in my obsession with film.  I’m not sure if others answering this will have some film from their childhood and I was just late to the party, but the first film that I can recall gateway-ing me to the adult world of film would be 1993’s True Romance.  I was probably 15 or 16 when I first saw it (and I should mention that I saw it prior to Reservoir Dogs), but it obviously opened my eyes to what movies could be and what the world of “adult” films were at the time.  Or maybe it was just so damned cool.  Although I’m come to be mostly annoyed by Tony Scott’s style, he was relatively reined in this time out.  The direction is mostly straightforward, I loved the soundtrack, I was amazed (and still am) at the wide array of actors on display, and, of course, Tarantino’s writing was unlike just about anything I had ever seen.  You’re so cool…you’re so cool…

Fletch from Blog Cabins

To a person of my age, Goodfellas was my Godfather. It came out in 1990, and I was 24. I’d been watching movies since I was ten, I suppose, and my thoughts on them were simple; either I liked them or I didn’t. It had nothing to do with form or style; if the movie entertained me it was good. Goodfellas opened up so many avenues for me – first of all, the much-publicised nightclub entrance taught me about lighting, and how difficult it is. Then there was the music which (being a music lover also) I knew prior to watching, but seemed so incongruous against what I was watching on screen, and yet worked perfectly. Then there’s the subject matter, which directly introduced me to what became my biggest part of recent history, that of the Rat Pack, HUAC, Howard Hughes-in-Vegas era. Finally, of course, it was the tale that Goodfellas told, a perverted Cinderella rags-to-riches and back again story. After watching Goodfellas, I realised what good movie-making was, and my own inquisitiveness did the rest.

Colin from Pick ‘n’ Mix Flix

The film in question was The Godfather. After sitting absorbed into the film for what seemed like several hours I reflected on how epic the whole experience was. I was eleven at the time and had never seen a film that said so much about the society, identity and character of a country like The Godfather did. Shortly thereafter I started watching all the classics my parents recommended and starting branching out into independent films. It was a game-changer as far as movies turned into films.

Fitz from Nevermind Popular Film

So let’s hear it.  What was your gateway movie, and what made you take notice of it? Also, if you’d like to take part as one of the featured bloggers of BAI, email me your address!  I have a heard time finding them sometimes… blakesfilmreviews AT gmail DOT com.

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5 Responses to “Bitch About It”
  1. melanie says:

    mine was nightmare on elm street. i remember being so fascinated by visual effects. the horror genre became a gateway to having a huge appreciation for film as a whole. little did i know that i would get to be a part of the movie making process decades later. wow.

  2. Rachel says:

    Even though I had seen many fantastic films before, that I have since come to appreciate, I think the film that did it for me was City of God. I was a senior in college on a school trip to London. I was simply blown away by the dialogue, acting, directing, editing…everything.

    It was also the first foreign film I ever saw.
    Rachel´s last blog post ..Thursdays Three- Yes- Ill Pay 50 for One!

  3. Will says:

    2001. It was during the spacewalk when all you hear is Dave’s breathing on the soundtrack for the entire sequence. I had seen the film once before and it all went over my head. The second time, I was about fifteen, and about halfway through the scene I noticed it was just breathing and it dawned on me that this was a conscious choice by Kubrick to enhance the scene. My film viewing was forever changed from that point on.

    Also about a year before that I saw the US release of Rumble in the Bronx which had action scenes unlike anything I had seen previously. This led me to investigate Jackie Chan and the Hong Kong film industry which led me into my adult-period film viewing that led to me seeing 2001 as described above.
    Will´s last blog post ..Rawhead Rex 1987

  4. Blake says:

    @ melanie – Believe it or not, I’ve never seen Nightmare on Elm Street. Those films were specifically forbidden by my mother, and I never caught up with them after I stopped listening to her.

    @ Rachel – Nice one! That is truly a great gateway film. You can’t get much better than that.

    @ Will – Wow, Will, I wish mine had been as highbrow as yours. I wasn’t ready for 2001 until I was 23.

  5. filmgeek says:

    Mine was Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Up until then all of the films I had seen at the cinema were typical Hollywood mainstream flicks. This film made me sit up and go “woah”
    filmgeek´s last blog post ..Old reviews- Dear John

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