Monday, November 12, 2012

Movie Monday: The It Was a Good Movie, But Never Again Edition

Just in time to give me something to write about for Movie Monday, over on Ravelry today some of my sister (and brother) knitters are talking about the movies they don't ever need to see again, even though they were perfectly good movies.

It is an interesting discussion, mostly because I'd never thought about movies that way before. There are parts of movies that I won't watch - the first twenty or thirty minutes of Up, for example. I don't need to sit there and cry for all that time because it reminds me too much of watching my mother slip away with dementia. That took years, and I feel no need to relive that.

But, I'd never thought before about whether there are whole movies that, though they were good, well-written and well-acted, that I just won't sit down and watch again. But, reading the responses over on Ravelry and thinking about it for a little while, I realized that, yes, there are movies that, while perfectly worthy, I really don't need to see again.

There is The Birds, directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Good movie. Suspenseful and all that. But I never, ever want to see it again. Once, on television, when I was still pretty young, was more than enough. Even after all these years, I'm still suspicious of more than two or three birds together in a group. It was a very effective movie, if nothing else.

Another movie I never want to see again is Martin Scorsese's Raging Bull. I probably wouldn't have seen it on my own, because I really despise boxing, but it was one of the movies shown in a community college film class that I took about twelve or fifteen years ago. So, I didn't have much choice but to see it. It was a good movie. Brilliant. But I have no desire to watch it again.

Same thing with Schindler's List. I probably would have seen it eventually, but it was another film I saw in that same class. Again, a brilliant movie in every way - writing, direction, performances. But it was so disturbing to me that I really don't need to ever watch it again.

Tom Horn, which was one of Steve McQueen's last films (he was already ill with the cancer that would kill him when he made it), is another movie that I thought was a good movie but will not see again. Others would probably argue with me about how good it was; it got poor reviews and did poorly at the box office when it was released. But, it is one of only two movies I've ever seen (the other was The Godfather) that gives the impression that the film crew actually went back in time and filmed it on location in the past rather than recreating the past for the film. It's really remarkable to be able to create that impression, I think. But, while I thought it was a good film, it was also a bleak film, very depressing, and I won't see it again.

And then there's the English version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. I just saw that recently. It's a very good movie. But, it was difficult to watch, especially a few very disturbing scenes. If you saw it, you know which scenes I'm referring to. I don't know yet whether I will not watch it again. I'd like to, because it is a good piece of film making, and I'm sure there are things I missed because I watched it late at night and was tired when I saw it. But, I've started to re-watch it several times and I haven't quite been able to make myself do it. So, it might turn out to be one of those films that I just can't watch again.

I don't feel bad at all about not watching movies a second time if they were just bad movies. But I feel sort of disappointed in myself that I won't re-watch movies that were good but that I found disturbing for some reason.

How about you? Are there good movies you won't watch again? And, do you feel uncomfortable in some way that you won't watch them again, even though they were good films?

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