I love movies. I don’t just love watching movies or seeing movies at the theater, but I’m absolutely head over heels in love with the art of cinema.With my elective credits in college I was able to take two English courses focusing on film, and I loved them both. With an aspiration to have a movie theater in my home when I can afford it, and a library filled to the brim with all of the movies that suit my interests; film noir, horror, romantic comedies, comedies, thrillers and countless others I believe I am a film junky.
I like to encourage people to watch movies any chance they get, no matter how the critics reviewed the film, or what your friends thought of it; it is so important to check movies out for yourself and make your own discoveries from the work of art. And when I say I encourage people to watch movies, I don’t just mean going to the theater when something new comes out. Don’t be afraid to flip on AMC, or TCM. Yes, I know, a lot of these movies are old or in black and white, but why should that matter? Some of my favorite quotes, scenes and actors were made famous before I was even born. Reach outside of the norm and watch a genre you’ve never seen before. Plus, a lot of those older movies are much more family friendly and can be enjoyed by people of all ages.
My boyfriend often complains about my movie requests because it most likely is a film we have already seen. He says things like, “we saw that one already, you’ve seen it a million times, we know how it’s going to end,” which are all true, but my argument lies within the details.
No matter how many times I have seen a movie, something new always jumps out at me and establishes itself as an integral part of the whole. Most movies are known for one or two particular scenes or quotes; I like to look for more. I look at some of the secondary characters most, the supporting actor or actress, and often find a deeper meaning or message.
While I have never been able to choose a number one favorite movie, I do have a few certain scenes from movies that helped me fall for the art and consider it one of my biggest passions. A couple of years ago, a friend of mine came up with the idea of deciding our 10 favorite scenes in movies. Honestly, it took me hours to narrow it down, I could make lists on top of lists describing what makes me love a certain film, actor, director or screenwriter.
For now, I will leave you with a couple of scenes that changed the way I view movies. I also want to encourage you to check out these scenes for yourselves and see if you feel the same way.
We’ve all heard of Steven Spielberg, and most of us have either heard of or seen Jaws. If you look past the giant, mechanical shark tormenting the small island community of Amity, and really delve into the characters of Chief Brody (Roy Scheider), Quint (Robert Shaw) and Hooper (Richard Dreyfuss) you learn so much more about the film.
Quint’s speech in Jaws, when the men are comparing scars is probably in my top five favorite scenes of all time, who knows, it could be number one. Quint tells his story in such a monotone way it makes it even more frightening. After Quint describes the horror of wading in the open ocean with sharks everywhere he says, “I’ll never put on a life jacket again,” which is so simple, but so poetic. The looks that Dreyfuss and Scheider have on their faces throughout this scene are amazing. Quint is the town crazy, but as he tells his story, Chief Brody and Hooper finally have a notion of why Quint is the way he is. This scene is just so mesmerizing it is impossible to see it as anything but one of the film’s best.
Another scene I will share is from Alfred Hitchcock’s North by Northwest. Hitchcock was the head of some of the most thrilling movies of all time, but there was always a sense of romance and humor in his work. In this particular film, Cary Grant plays Roger Thornhill, an advertising executive plagued by being mistaken for a government agent. While chaos ensues, Grant managed to develop his character in a way that led to many swooning women, and even more laughs. In one scene Grant’s character is attending an auction, he continues to make fake, unrealistic bids like $13 on a piece of artwork worth thousands. The humor incorporated into a thrilling, dramatic piece of work makes it stand out even more. It’s hard to make a viewer happy, but when you touch on many different emotions, like fear, humor, suspense and romance it is likely to be a hit; especially with Hitchcock directing.
With a couple of my favorite scenes now out in the open, I encourage you to share some of yours. Share them with anyone; friends, family, us. It’s alright to be passionate about movies. Being passionate doesn’t necessarily mean you sit at home all day in a dark basement watching film after film, it can mean you enjoy a good movie once a week, a few times a month or a handful of times a year. Figure out why you decided to watch a certain film and decide whether or not that goal was met at the end of the film.
A final reminder, when you watch a movie, especially at a theater, make sure you watch until the very end of the credits. Every single person on that list of cast and crew members worked so hard to produce something for our entertainment, give them the respect they deserve.
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