A few weeks back, Lovefilm, the British equivalent of Netflix, released a list of movies that people routinely lie about seeing to friends and peers.
Topping the list was The Godfather, which over the years since its release in 1972, has slowly and sadly become a lesser gangster movie in lieu of flicks like Goodfellas and ghetto-fabulous favorite Scarface, both which are just quotable as the first Corleone film, but outdo the Coppola opus in violence exponentially.
Then you have films like Casablanca and 2001: A Space Odyssey, which are slowly getting lost in the shuffle of new media and special effects. As for Taxi Driver, Apocalypse Now, and Reservoir Dogs, those seem to be required male viewing for anyone who has ever been depressed or warped. Everyone thinks they are Travis Bickle or Colonel Kurtz at least once in their lives.
Blade Runner and The Great Escape are not in the common film vocabulary, which is a shame, with even myself only seeing bits and pieces of each. The people who haven't seen This Is Spinal Tap and call themselves music fans of any stripe are lower than dirt. Joe Dirt even, which itself has its champions.
Here's the list in order...
I just saw this over this past Christmas. Shoot me.
I saw this in a college film class in 2001, during the same week we watched Gunga Din.
I plastered pictures of this movie all over my walls in freshman year in 1997, and now it sort of makes me giggle and not feel empowered at all.
2001: A Space Odyssey
I have never seen this Kubrick masterpiece, even though I do love the soundtrack.
I loved it in junior high, and now it's annoying. I like Tarantino's work now more than his earlier stuff. It's not as jumpy.
This Is Spinal Tap
I would watch this every day if I could.
I tapped into this one in junior high and it warped me real good for months. Laying under ceiling fans, crying most weekends.
Come on, how could you have not seen this movie, which is still better than most movies, even when it's edited for television.
I own this but have never put it on.
The Great Escape
Same as above, with this one sadly sitting on my shelf next to well-worn copies of Almost Famous and The Hangover. I never said I was a cineaste.
I admitted to not seeing a few of these above freely. But there are some movies that you shouldn't brag about seeing, or reference in polite conversations with peers. It's easier to not have any frame of reference to these flicks and just let that part of your brain go numb. When someone asks you if you have seen 27 Dresses, just let the words go in one ear and out of the other like a homeless person is talking to you on the street.
I get it. Death is funny.
Anything Past The Original Saw
A baby with a huge penis. What could go wrong?
You Don't Mess With The Zohan
It's good because Middle Eastern people talk funny.
Anything Katherine Heigl-related beyond Bride Of Chucky or Knocked Up
I spent a shameful Sunday with this movie. I can at least admit that much.
"Let's get Hilary Duff to cover a Madonna song we pick from a roulette wheel and then write a film script for her to star in based on the song title."
Gotta love Ben Affleck's half-ass John Travolta/mobster accent.
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The Sisterhood Of The Traveling Pants (If You Are A Dude)
Like The Craft, but without drugs and witchcraft.