Are you crazy about movies? No, I don’t mean to go crazy for Harold Lloyd’s comedy Crazy from 1932 about a young man with little or no acting ability, desperately trying to be in the film. I mean, are you crazy for period films? I have to admit I’m a cracker for movies. So everyone who considers themselves a movie buff raises their hand. Yup, that’s pretty much everyone. Why are we crazy about movies? Why do we live in a film-mad society? Hey, what movie is that?
Films are ideas and/or stories that are brought to the audience through emotion with sound and seamless sequences of images. Thanks to Google Search.
How popular is the film? Well, the keyword “movie” boasts 1.1 billion and more and more searches on the Google search engine alone. And the keyword “movie trailer” has garnered more than 127 million searches. Watching movie trailers on the internet has become a popular past for many people. I know my husband is one of them. He likes watching his movie trailers.
The last year alone has generated an astonishing box office revenue of 29.2 billion dollars worldwide just for 2009. Films are watched and made all over the world. The language gap has been eliminated due to the addition of subtitles. Now we can all share a universal film experience.
Besides being universal, films are made for all ages, young and old. Why you can even see generations in most Disney or children’s movie shows. There is something out there for everyone, regardless of your age.
We celebrate films and we celebrate stars in our films. We bring it into our homes through TV shows dedicated to stars like ET, ET Canada, Access Hollywood, and TMZ to name a few. We take supermarket tabloids like The National Enquirer and Star scan the latest celebrity gossip and put it in our shopping cart when no one is looking.
We throw an Oscar party like we have a Superbowl party and even bet or at least announce our opinion on who wins the Academy Awards, Golden Globes, MTV Awards, etc. Then there are classic TV shows like ‘The Lifestyle of the Rich and Famous’ which we faithfully turn on while enjoying content like good wine.
The show lasted for more than 10 years (March 1984 – September 1995). What a run! What a concept! We literally got to go out together and drool at the luxury homes, lifestyles, and vacation spots of the stars’ dreams. Today, you can watch similar shows like MTV’s ‘Cribs’ and ‘The Fabulous Life of….’ from VH1.
If you prefer a home body, you don’t have to leave the comfort of your own home to watch a movie. You can actually stream movies via regular cable TV or on dedicated movie channels like Thrill, The Movie Network, HBO, Movie Central, Showtime, Turner Classic Movies, etc. And that’s after you’ve clicked on a TV movie of the week, shot a movie on your PVR or sent your kids to the video store to rent one of this week’s new releases.
Oh, and not to mention you can buy movies from your brick and mortar video store on the street or even online on eBay or Amazon.
How do we get our golden ticket to this magnificent palace? We buy cereal boxes and cut up cardboard vouchers, we use our air mile points or exchange reward points to turn cash into movie tickets. We filled out the contest form in hopes of being selected as the lucky few to attend the pre-screening of our favorite film before it even hits theaters.
We also march on red carpets around the world and listen to celebrity interviews on our favorite day and night shows like Tonight’s Show with Jay Leno, Late Night with David Letterman, Oprah and Regis & Kelly.
What beats the movie experience? No. We book our tickets, buy our favorites, pick up the latest Famous or Tribute magazines for some light, casual reading before our movies (while gorging on real butter popcorn or a bag of liquorice). The lights dim, the screen widens and picture and sound arrive simultaneously. We anticipate movie previews while watching annoying commercials and then there are.
These great beautiful attractions come in all their splendor. We whispered yes or no or gave a thumbs up to our friends sitting next to us for the next film adventure we were planning. Then if we’re lucky, that is, people will hear the sound of THX sound effects roaring around the theater. (Hey guys you can hear it on YouTube or download it as mp3 or free ringtones). Then the wait is over. Chihui! And the adventure begins…
Again, why are we crazy about movies? Could it be because films are cheap; cheap dates; or a budget family outing. Whether the encounter could be further enhanced through an Imax or 3-D experience. Or even deeper. A chance to escape the real world if only for a few hours. Movies evoke emotions whether they are joy, laughter, terror, sadness, inspiration, faith, love, etc.
Maybe you’re on an unexpected adventure, figuring out a mystery or watching a family face loss. Movies take us away; wherever we want to go. Even the theater itself is an experience as we have found it. Lights, sounds, shades, big screens, big comfortable cloth chairs, comfortable cup holders, popcorn and snacks from the snack stand, etc. The experience of watching movies really touches all our senses. What movies have made you emotional lately?
Movies are one place where you can choose what you want to see and feel. If I want to be happy, I will watch light comedy. If I want to be happy I will go see a thriller or a horror. And if I want to cheer up my little nephew, I’ll watch the latest animated movies, etc.
Then there are other genres that fill the film experience: action and adventure, crime and gangster, drama, epic/history, musical/dance, science fiction, war, documentaries, westerns, biographies, girl films, detectives and mysteries, disasters, fantasy, movies noir, men’s movies, melodramas/weepers, street movies, romance, sports, supernatural, etc.
Movies bring people together. They are something to talk about at the watering hole at your 9 to 5 job, chat amongst your Facebook friends or discuss in forums. We can talk about the worst movie we’ve ever seen or our favorite movie of all time. We can quiz each other on movie trivia, quotes and songs.
We can read or write reviews about movies, look up movie ratings, and buy books about movies. We can even get the latest Hollywood gossip delivered to our email box or go online to peruse blogs like Leonard Maltin’s Movie Crazy blog.
Are there any other advantages to movies besides the overall entertainment experience? Actually, there is. Many professional therapists use film to help people in crisis. There is a therapeutic movement using — you guessed it — film. This is called Cinema Therapy.
Cinema therapy is used because it is readily available (there are quite a number of cinemas in every city) and the subject matter of most films is familiar to everyone. It also enhances the good relationship between client and therapist. Who doesn’t want to talk about movies.
Other benefits include emotional release as when we laugh during a laugh comedy we release stress, tension and/or pain. A jolt of tears that makes us cry releases emotions that have accumulated/blocked. How about a film that touches on relationships or parenting. These observations and/or lessons can bring us closer to others, make us analyze our current situation/relationships or make us realize that we have work to do.
And if there’s one last thing that reinforces our crazy movie mentality, it’s our desire or longing to actually be in movies and/or meet movie stars. Well, this is only in — you can do both. Have you ever heard the term extra TV or movie? If you want to see better filmmaking and see a movie star or two, sign up for an extra. You will get paid, be fed, be on set, and maybe meet your favorite movie star.