The Great Movie Adventure: Take 2
Ok. I give. I’m tapping out. I call uncle.
A while back I decided I would watch most of the movies on so many “Movies Every Man Must Watch” lists, weed out the junk that has no business being there, and present a proper list. If you want to read the original concept, go here.
During this undertaking I helped put together a little online event called The Embodiment Conference. And by little, I mean it was mammoth and completely destroyed a few previous world records. This took up a considerable amount of my time, and my movie watching took a hit. But when I came out on the other side, I still had time to get through the hole list. Until… I read another one of those damned lists. Most movies were, of course, old. Very old. Few were newer than 1990. That in itself isn’t a problem, there are many great old movies. However, many were the same crap as all the others. You should watch Citizen Kane because… it’s old. Like all the other lists, it was filled with movies that had no true relevance. I’m sorry, the Bourne Trilogy is not a must watch for men. Is it a good action series – debatable. Must watch, no. It doesn’t speak at all to the male experience, other than stuff blows up. But, I reached my limit when I got to a standard on so many lists – Fight Club. Don’t get me wrong, I love the movie and have watched it many times. But, does it speak to the male experience? Not in the least. It’s good fun, with a cool twist and a standard attempt to make a message about whatever. Yes, it supposedly makes a statement about consumerism. Except, it doesn’t. And any search on YouTube on it’s message will tell you the creator meant for the opposite of what everyone takes away from the movie (which says the movie did a rather piss-poor job of expressing it).
Why Does It Matter?
Culture is a shared way of doing things, a shared understanding. Back in the day, the US had a shared culture. You read similar books in school, did similar things. Now, not so much. This is both good, and bad. It allows us to remove things that we maybe had not realized at the time were unsavory. And yet, it also means we no longer have a shared culture. We are not a nation, indivisible. We are very much divided. Add to this, men have little or no role models to lead them. The books are gone, the movies and TV shows have little or no real value other than entertainment, and we’re all just adrift, bumping into each other as we go about our days trying to pay the bills.
Don’t believe me, ask yourself this: When was the last time a TV sitcom had morals or purpose? Seinfeld was not the first show to have no purpose. Gone are the shows like My Three Sons, or more recently, Growing Pains. Shows that actually spoke about the human condition and were about something. It was even in the title. Now we’ve got… Friends. A group of people that, when you take away the laugh track, say and do some seriously messed up stuff. YouTube it. And a hundred Friends knock-offs. No purpose, no really intent, just people being horrible and making you laugh about it.
The New Plan
I’ve decided to scrap (for now) the must-see movie list idea. Instead I’m going to revamp many of the reviews already put out and create an entirely new category on the site for Manly Movies, and listing those movies that are worth seeing (and not because they are old or important to film, or lots of stuff blows up).
You can now find the Manly Movies category here.