People Underestimate the Value of a Good Ramble

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Nobody Puts Baby in a Corner

A conversation at work about Jennifer Grey on Dancing With the Stars got me to thinking.  First of all, it brought to mind all stories about how Grey and Patrick Swyaze didn't even like each other while they were filming Dirty Dancing. I firmly believe this, cause why would they even say that, since Hollywood prefers to make everyone be in love. Up until the moment that they need a story about their break up, that is.  But anyway, they just seemed to try so hard on DWTS to make us know that this was Baby we were seeing here. Baby was dancing for us again, with a guy who is young and handsome, just like Johnny Castle was back in the day.  Sorry, but I wasn't impressed.

Anyway, back to thinking. What it made me think about was what movies I have to watch whenever I see them on. What I mean is, if I'm flipping channels and a particular movies is on, from that point forward, I'm forced to watch. Well, not forced, exactly, I want to watch, but still I have no choice. I MUST watch them.

So, in no particular order, here are the movies I must watch when I'm scrolling the channels:

1. Dirty Dancing - Bet you guessed that one was coming just from the way I spent the first two paragraphs of this post talking about it.  I just  love this movie, it's fun and musical and full of young people and dancing and human rights and ...wait a minute, it's like High School Musical or Hairspray, only with sex.

2. Independence Day - My family always watches a movie or two on Thanksgiving, after the food when we are all sitting around in a stupor.  Well one year, when this movie first came out and we hadn't yet seen it, my husband went out with my nephews to choose a movie and came home with this video, which he decided to buy rather than rent. I think it cost like $20+ and I wasn't happy.  I actually refused to watch it with them.  It has since become one of my favorite movies and I watch it every year on 4th of July (but not on Thanksgiving). Even so, I end up watching it probably three times in that week, since there is generally at least one station that plays it over and over again. What can I say, I'm just a sucker for aliens, explosions and computer geeks.

3. Jurassic Park - The first time I saw it was at my sister's house. For some reason, she had bought it and she and her husband were having a "viewing" to which they invited me and my husband. I recall spending much of the movie with a pillow from her couch clutched in my hands, ready to cover my eyes at any scene I didn't feel up to seeing at that particular moment.  We were terrified, but in an awesome way, so whenever I see it on I watch cause I want that feeling back.

4. Beautiful Girls - Just seeing little baby Natalie Portman and Tim Hutton talking about Winnie the Pooh makes this movie worth a watch every time. Honestly, do you need more than that?

5. The Truman Show - I'm not really a Jim Carrey fan. In fact, I dislike him intensely when he's being what I would loosely call funny and I simply tolerate him when he's being serious. Of course, this movie is serious and somehow, when I'm watching it, I can completely forget that I'm seeing Jim Carrey. So I guess that makes him a good actor....hmmm.  In any case, this is just one of those movies that sucks me in when I see it. Suddenly, I'm watching it, again, and I'm still somehow expecting him to be able to sail his boat right out of there.

6. Silverado - I'm a fan of westerns and this is one of my faves. I remember the first time I saw it and was introduced to a crazy acting Kevin Costner for the first time.

7. Legally Blonde - Can you say shallow? OK, fine, maybe I am. But this is such a FUN movie.

8. The Shining - How can anyone resist the lure of Jack Nicholson's "Heeeeerrre's Johnny"  which gets me, every single time? And the woman in the bathtub and those creepy kids in the long hallway.  But only the original movie, not the remake. As I always say, accept no substitutes.

9. A Knight's Tale - One scene:  We Will, We Will ROCK You.

10.Back To The Future - I actually saw this about a week before it first came out as part of a test audience. It was the only time I've ever been in a movie where everyone in the theater was applauding and encouraging the hero. Out loud. It was just such a neat group experience. I feel like I should still be friends with those people, although I didn't know them and this happened back in 1985.

11. Terminator - I already mentioned my thing for explosions and computers, right?

I asked my husband and he said his movies were Shawshank Redemption, Fargo, Good Fellas, Scent of a Woman and Riding in Cars With Boys.

Yes, we are very different.

So, what are your "can't pass by" movies?

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The Buffy Test

I read a blog post the other day at Dating After 40 about using your favorite TV shows as a dating scale. It got me to thinking. Not about dating cause, since I'm already married, I'm fairly certain that my husband wouldn't look kindly on my deciding to date other men.

Since we've just entered the Fall TV season, it made me think about how I determine which shows to watch each year.  My husband has always thought I watched too many shows and, I'll admit, in the past I've watched 20+ hours a week, which may seem a bit excessive, depending on how you look at it.  But keep in mind that I wrote two different entertainment blogs at the time and you can understand the need to watch that much TV in a week. And honestly, it's less than 3 hours a night anyway.  Just because he never watches anything or reads anything or has any other interesting hobbies, is that my fault?

So, um, where was I? Right, how to decide what to watch this year. Normally, I have this system whereby I watch every single show I want to, as long as I'm able to DVR it and can find time to watch it at some point before the DVR (fine, two DVRs) was full.  That basically meant that I could record up to four shows at the same time and, if I really needed to, watch another one on a different TV.  I could even, if absolutely necessary, watch a show or two online at some point, too.

Even worse, once I started to watch a show I felt like I had to finish out the season and, often, once I finished one season I felt the need to keep watching. As though I owed the show something. Last year, I implemented a new policy. The "three strikes and you're out" policy.  If I didn't absolutely love a show after the third ep, I was done. It was better and it cut way down on my TV watching, at least by the end of the season. 

This year, I was even more ruthless. I decided to only watch the bare minimum of shows I really, really want to watch. But even then, I've been starting to think that I may have chosen too many.  So then I read that blog post. I've been thinking, maybe I should use a similar litmus test for what shows I'm going to watch.

The show I'd use as my standard would be Buffy the Vampire Slayer, which is, as anyone who knows me already knows, my very, very most absolute favorite show of all time. Ever. I couldn't miss an ep when it aired and I watched every single ep at least three times in the first week.  I've seen each and every one of the 144 eps (also the original pilot ep) at least 25 times. At least.

So, now, I'm comparing every show on my list with Buffy. If I'd rather watch a repeat of an ep of Buffy that I've already seen 25+ times, then the show is totally off the list.