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I have a burning need to know stuff and I love asking awkward questions.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Thinking About: Going to the Movies

For years now, probably getting on for five at least, I’ve been very disappointed with the quality and variety of movies that I can see on the big screen. So much so that in recent years I’ve almost stopped going. Where I could have probably watched anything up to 20 movies a year a few decades ago I found that more recently I was lucky to see a good half dozen with ten viewings being what I now consider to be a bumper crop. I don’t think it’s because I’m getting that much harder to please – though I am. I think it’s because of a number of trends that you can see from the Hollywood machine in the last decade ago: the production of endless sequels and remakes, the Americanisation of foreign language films, the almost instant jumping on the bandwagon of anything that has a popular following be it a book series, comic character/series, TV series, successful stage show (and so on) and the production of films designed to appeal to the widest possible demographic and therefore made to be as bland and as palatable as possible. All of this, and more that has presently slipped my mind, comes I think from two main drivers – avoidance of any risk and a basic lack of imagination. Of course on the face of it the movies have never been more successful which means that they will continue to make and remake the same pap over and over again for years to come. So you can see that I was (and deep down still am) resigned to going to the movies less and less as the years go by. But 2014 has surprised me a bit…..

I do tend to haunt the IMdb.com website and use it as my main alert for new upcoming movies. It’s basically where I watch all of my advance trailers. I few weeks ago I went through the new movies list and was very surprised to find that I had written down 11 movies that had piqued my interest. Eleven – and it’s only January. How many more simply haven’t been announced yet? OK, maybe a few of them might get missed due to various reasons, but still – Eleven……

So here they are (in no particular order):

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Welcome to Yesterday
Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Jupiter Ascending
I, Frankenstein
300: Rise of an Empire
Edge of Tomorrow

Some of these choices surprise even me. I’m not a huge fan of the Marvel films but Winter Soldier looks interesting. Likewise both Robocop and Godzilla. Part of the endless remake and reimage industry but still, they do look interesting. Others, like Interstellar and Jupiter Ascending are total shots in the dark which I might end up not watching but no doubt something might be around to replace them. All in all though 2014 could very well be a good year for the movies – go figure!

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