Phil's Quick Capsule Review

Motion Picture Maniac’s Guide To Picking A Favourite Movie

Dust off your DVD’s and prepare your Ludovico eye drops because you and I, together and holding hands the whole way through, are gonna solve the answer to that itchy personal question many unfortunate film buffs live with and suffer daily; twisting their skulls and scratching their brains like a schizophrenic gorilla trying to make the voices stop every time some ill informed passerby asks: so you’re a film buff eh? What’s your favourite movie then?

Do you have trouble choosing from the hundreds (if not thousands) of films you’ve seen? Do you have a list of personal bests from which you wish to pick one out, like a top 10, 20 or 50, but don’t know which one to go with? Let these feelings of incompleteness bother you no longer fellow film nuts as you’ve come to the right place, read forth what lies before you and you just might be able to pluck your all time favourite from the ocean of films drowning your mind and salting your eyes red raw.

Note: Unless told otherwise, every answer to the following should be a “yes” in order for the subject to qualify for the holy position, if any “no’s” come along then the candidate is caput and it’s time to start over with a new and different choice; let’s begin!

Do you, without question, love every single scene and every single shot; not being able to live without even one if it were removed?

Is there absolutely nothing about it you dislike, do you even enjoy its visible mistakes in an endearing sense?

Would you highly praise every single one of its filmic elements: acting, cinematography, narrative, style, editing etc.?

Do you feel better after watching it, would you say it’s good for your soul; regardless of how dark/depressing the film is intended to be?

Have you or could you watch it in excess of 200 times without getting bored, and watch it a further 200 times after that? (An impressive feat right there!)

Are you unhealthily obsessed with it even when you’re not watching it? Does it pop into your mind at the worst possible moment like porn does with teenaged dickheads.

When it is over, is your first instinct to hit the replay button without a moment’s hesitation? Everyone knows a favourite film should take priority over a personal life.

Do you and this potential candidate have a long history together? Have you loved it since childhood for example? A solid “yes” is not required but it can help if you’ve been watching it again and again for that long.

Do you know all the dialogue off by heart? In fact – do you have the entire film itself committed to memory? A sad admission but hey, we’re all friends here.

Are you well versed in its behind-the-scenes making?

Does it contain a message or themes you fundamentally agree with on a very personal level? I myself am partial to movies with a message pertaining to how much the human race irredeemably SUCKS!

Does it also apply to your own personal tastes on a surface level? Does it do things you just happen to like aesthetically; without really mattering too much to the story but never the less tickle you?

If a significant other hated it, would you end the relationship? (What was it I said about priorities?)

Do you even enjoy watching the end credits?

Is your favourite part the bit between opening up the DVD box and hitting replay after watching the whole thing? Har har har!

(These next few are for protection against the disapproving “um, OK then…” you may hear from the more elite type of film snob, you’ll know what I mean in a second)

Is more than ten years old? Better yet, was it made before the turn of the 21st century? (This is probably the most unfair requirement but apparently, if it isn’t, then it is taken less seriously for some reason; ever notice that?)

Is it actually considered good by most other people as well? If not, does it at least have a dedicated following or reputation for still being watchable; despite a negative reception on paper?

Would the non-film buff every man understand your choice if you told him? If yes, then great, if no, it matters as much as his inferior opinion, just ignore him, you can say no for this one; please do continue.

Finally, are the chances of you ever changing your mind slim to never? Tell a film snob your favourite film has been so for 15 years and watch their eyes widen with respect for your seriousness for film buff-ism.

Ok that’s it, that’s all I got, if this has helped you find your ultimate choice for best movie ever then great, fantastic even, if not then… really? Wow, tough crowd, worse still – if the choice all of these questions brought you to is something like Transformers 5 then… then… oh who am I kidding, more power to ya, who am I to judge? That being said, please tell me it was something else!


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Motion Picture Maniac

Writer, film lover and blogger. And now sadly retired from this site (rumour is he went to Russia live with the Tsars.)

Favourite Film: Touch Of Evil (used to be se7en but kinda fell out of love with it after this whole thing with Kevin Spacey came to light), Most underrated movie: everything by Zack Snyder. Most overrated movie: Carrie

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