People will inevitably ask me what my favorite movies are, and I never have an answer. You’d think I would, since I spend a huge portion of my life watching movies, talking about movies, thinking about movies, and just generally being a movie geek. The name of my favorite movie should just roll off my tongue like an iconic movie line. No matter what, I will still usually come up short when I hear this question.
I think part of the problem is just that I’ve seen so many movies now that I don’t have one favorite or even ten favorites: I have at least a hundred. There’s also the fact that I don’t always want to admit what my favorite movies are, because I don’t want to get into an argument with the other person. People all tend to have strong opinions about the movies that they’ve seen. A discussion is great, but some people take it too far.
There’s also a difference between the movies that I really like and the movies that I really admire. Citizen Kane really is a great movie, and it deserves the positive reputation that it has. I can’t really call it my favorite movie, though, even though it’s so great. I really only needed to see it once, and my favorite movies are the ones that I actively try to memorize. Technically speaking, Citizen Kane is definitely better than a lot of the movies that I do consider to be my favorites, but that doesn’t mean that it’s suddenly going to outrank them.
Another problem with this whole question is that I always feel the need to come up with original responses. I don’t want to mention the movies that everyone else mentions. If those are my favorites though, then what am I going to do? I don’t want to have to think of new responses every time.
You know you’re a movie geek when even a question like this is enough to make you analyze the question rather than actually answering it.
I should mention that it’s sometimes the same way for the movies that I consider to be my least favorite. I might think that some movies are really terrible technically, but I might still enjoy watching them. There’s also the fact that some movies, like Batman and Robin, are basically designated film punching bags for everyone. I don’t even really see the point in mentioning them when people ask me about the movies that I really hate. Everyone hates them, and I’m just saying what everyone already knows.
Still, if I mention a mediocre movie or a movie that no one’s heard of when they ask me about what I hate, they might just get angry or confused. It’s a conundrum.
Ultimately, maybe this is just not a series of questions that you want to ask a movie geek unless you want him or her to talk your ear off for the next few minutes. Then again, some people must like it when we do that, since there are basically professional movie geeks working online today. In that case, carry on.