Friday, March 20, 2009

How to enjoy a movie

People who know me know that I am a big superhero fan and that I love continuity. One of the big reasons I read Marvel more than DC is that DC changes their continuity often in big events, whereas Marvel doesn't really. The closest I can think of to Marvel doing that is One More Day which was horrible for that and other reasons. I also love seeing little things that don't add to the story, but show that the writer or artist knows what he or she is creating and how that character should be written or drawn. When it comes to superhero movies, I love them. Surprise, surprise. But, with all of the things that are different (Uncle Ben's killer was Sandman? Batman wears rubber nipples?) you might think otherwise, as I love Spider-Man to be the same no matter where I am.

Movies can be fun to go to with lots of friends. I know this, because I have done it before. You can talk about it before, after and hopefully not in between. Talking about a movie after can be lots of fun. I remember that when I saw Disturbia, as we were leaving, I was laughing at how corny the bodies that kept falling out of the guy's house were. I mean, there were a lot of bodies, just falling out of closets and stuff. It was silly. My friends didn't quite feel that way and wondered why I was so disturbed for enjoying seeing death in such large amounts. Still, it was a lot of fun to discuss it. Why would superhero movies be different, right?

I like going to superhero movies (and movies in general) alone for the most part. I can talk to people before and after, just not immediately before and after, and in the movie, being alone or with somebody shouldn't really matter if you are trying to just watch the movie. When I go to superhero movies, I try to have fun. It is how I enjoyed seeing Spider-Man 3, Ghost Rider, X-Men 3 and Fantastic Four 2. I don't go into them in full fanboy mode, expecting everything to be perfect, because that is unrealistic, but also because I want to have fun. Isn't the point of the movie to have fun and enjoy yourself? Sure, I saw Ghost Rider with other people, but I still enjoyed watching it. But, afterward, I like to reminisce.

After watching a superhero movie, especially about a superhero I like, I like to go over everything they did wrong, while walking home. I live a fair amount of distance away from the theater I usually go to, which means I have a lot of time. I like to just think about the movie and how it was. After watching Spider-Man 3 (at 1 AM on IMAX), I walked home, going over how bad the symbiote worked, especially with the dancing and strange behavior, how bad Sandman was treated, how bad Venom was treated, how stupid the New Goblin looked and acted (and how stupid the name New Goblin is), and everything else I didn't like about the movie. But after that, I got all my hatred out about the movie, and realized that while I was watching it, I still enjoyed it. I am not saying Spider-Man 3 is a good movie, far from it. I am saying that it is a movie that can still be enjoyable. If I obsessed about movies while watching them, I'd never finish a movie, because everything has never been perfect.

The act of walking home, getting all the bad stuff out of the way, then just moving on allows me to enjoy movies for what they are and get my fanboyish nature under control and to enjoy movies other people might not. Try it next time you see a superhero movie about a superhero you like. Just go by yourself (you can always see it with friends later also if necessary), work out all the issues you have with it while going home, then look back and see if you enjoyed it. Don't work on the things it did wrong in the movie itself. Wait for after the movie, when you let it all out at once. You might be able to be like me and enjoy movies, even if they aren't good.

EDIT: In writing my Watchmen review (that will go up midnight on Monday, the 23rd), I realized one of the other reasons to go alone. Right after the act of doing something, your opinions are beginning to form and can be easily molded by things that can get in your way. After watching a movie, if a friend loved or hated it and you have a differing opinion, your opinion might become stronger after hearing their reasoning, especially if it is bad reasoning. So, if someone hated a movie that you thought was okay, you might end up with your final opinion being that you loved it, just to spite the other person, subconsciously. This can also happen if they have a similar view to yours, as mentioning things they liked might make you like it more, or things they dislike might make you dislike it more. Sure, it is still your opinion, but it then has been altered. I like to have my actual opinion about something, and not be influenced by outside sources until I've gone over things in my own head, so that when I then talk to my friends, we can just talk about it as we all actually feel as opposed to making poor subconscious decisions about things.


Anonymous said...

Pi, my dear friend, that was magnificent. No hyperbole. From the bottom of my heart. I was honestly moved by that piece of writing, and I will never forget it.

In fact, I am inspired. I am daydreaming about a Pee Wee's Playhouse Penny cartoon styled animation with your thoughts narrated on top.

I can't wait for Monday at midnight. My blog has gotten thousands (yes, thousands) of hits from my Watchmen squid ramblings, and your opinion will be highly valued.

Thank you.

Pi_3.14159... said...

Thanks. Mostly, it just comes from discussions with friends about Spider-Man 3, X-Men: The Last Stand and Fantastic Four 2, all of which I enjoyed while watching, although have to admit are not good movies.

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