I go to the cinema a lot. I mean, every week, sometimes twice. In the past seven years, I've seen over 300 movies on the big screen alone, never mind the movies I saw on Sky or on DVD. Narrowing it down to a top ten is a little bit unfair, but it comes down to this: if I'm looking for a movie I want to re-watch, whatever I think of is worthy of a place on the list.
In a similar fashion to my book list, there's a caveat or two: there is no set order to this list, and, if a movie is an adaptation of a book I read before seeing the movie, it won't appear on the list. (So, no The Fault in Our Stars or The Perks of Being a Wallflower, for example.) Onto the list!
Scott Pilgrim Vs. the World
My first time seeing it, I was alone, and I loved every bit of it. I loved it so much that, the next day, I watched it again with my brothers. It was quirky and weird and funny, and it played off so many perfect video game and comic book devices that I couldn't not fall in love with it. (So far, I've only read the first graphic novel, but I loved that too. Double win!)
The Breakfast Club
First year in college, when I should have been studying for exams, a bunch of us sat around a laptop in a lecture room and watched a movie. This movie. This was during a tough period of my life (see A Bad Seven Months), and it helped me come to terms with myself in a way that I needed about five years beforehand. I felt more secure in who I was. More than that, I felt confident in who I was, for maybe the first time in as long as I can remember. I needed the movie, and the experience, and the people I shared it with.
Ferris Bueller's Day off
Did you ever see a movie that made you want to take a step out of your life for a while? For me, Ferris Bueller was that movie. I can't remember the first time I saw it, because I've seen it so many times since. I've watched it with family, with friends, with family of a friend, drunk and sober, and sometimes I've barely been able to hear it, and every time it made me want a friend like Ferris who could make a day off possible.
Stranger Than Fiction
My favourite Will Ferrell movie isn't a comedy. It's funny, in a way, but it's more charming and romantic and weird than it is funny. It forced me to think about what I write a little more closely, and it made me want to try new things in my life. I revisit it every time I'm feeling a little lost in my writing, and while it doesn't always serve as a therapy session, it does succeed, every time, in making me feel better.
Never Let Me Go
When I needed a story that sought out life, I found Never Let Me Go. I found a story of people who just wanted to live their lives together, against all the odds. It was beautiful and heartbreaking, and I fall in love with it every time I watch it.
Across the Universe
What do you get when you take Beatles songs and make a movie out of them? A pretty damn amazing movie, that's what! We watched it in a friend's house, on a laptop, all of us cramped together in a little room, and when it was over, I wanted to watch it again. (So I bought it, and did.) It has all the psychedelic nonsense you need from the Beatles' later albums, it has pro-peace rallies, and drinking, and bromance, and all the sort of stuff you need to make a movie set in the 60s all the more awesome.
The Rocky Horror Picture Show
Don't even ask me how I heard of it. Somehow, it found its way into my life, perverse and sexual and full of crazy dance numbers, and I never let it go. On the off chance I'm ever out on Halloween night, I request that the Time Warp be played, so I can teach people the dance moves. It takes everyone by surprise. The show even found its way into The Perks of Being a Wallflower, which made the reading and watching all the better, and when Glee did a Rocky Horror episode, complete with soundtrack, it was all I listened to for a long time. (And, you know, sang along to. Every time. In public. Including Touch Me.)
New to the list, after a salivating viewing experience a few weeks ago, is Chef. It's all about what it says in the title - a chef. Specifically, one who loves to cook real authentic food. And he drives a food truck. And makes amazing sandwiches. And between the outright food porn and the score, I came out of the movie feeling more upbeat and thrilled with life than I ever have.
Yep, the Jason Segel one. When I watched it, I was reminded of an experience that no one should ever truly forget - my childhood. It felt like being a kid again, sitting in the cinema, laughing out loud and not caring whether anyone was judging me. It was upbeat, hilarious, and released a soundtrack that I still listen to to this day. (I even ended up watching old Muppet movies afterwards, and getting two mugs from the Disney Store in Dublin.)
Ending on a darker note, we have Seven, the crime-thriller with a series of murders, each based on one of the seven deadly sins. It was disturbing when I first watched it, and it stuck with me. Years later, then, when I was writing my undergrad. research paper, I had something I could use as part of my research, as a primary text I could study. It was one of several saving graces that made the paper more enjoyable to write overall.