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Watching With No Expectations

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I have recently gotten into the habit of watching films without reserching them deeply first(I got this idea from a french documentary about Henri Langlois.He used to show three films a night at the Cineamatheque. He show them without description and often times in other languages without subtitles to explain what was going on to the audeince.). I have found that if I expect nothing out of a film and don't read up on the plot then it is ultimately the film's job to impress me(Alot of times when viewing a film that I've read up about I know too much or expect far too much from certain scene's/Character's.Leading me to maybe overate or underrate the film without putting emphasis on how enjoyable it was to me).It offers alot to the imagination when I haven't read up on other's impressions on the film and it reaches you on more of a personal level than a cultural influenced level.

Now,the results have been mixed on how this has worked out for me. For example I absolutly loved The Life and Death Of Colonel Blimp because I didn't know what was coming and knew next to nothing of the characters.But,for more obscure pictures I've seen recently it has left me very confused(Most of The Cabinet Of Dr. Caligiri was confusing to me at first and I honestly didn't quite understand the picture until I read up on it.).Still it has been more of an adventure when I'd usually give up on a picture after watching it confused.

However,when it comes to Surrealists pictures that I've seen recently(Un Chien Andalou,L'age D'or,etc.) it has really helped me to derive my own meanings from them and really has helped me to enjoy these types of films.

What are your opinions on going into a film cold turkey?



If a movie is amazing - it will be better the viewings after the first : if it isn't - it won't.

Hearing about what happens in the movie is sort of a small version of this process.
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What are your opinions on going into a film cold turkey?
I've always preferred not knowing much, if anything at all, when viewing a film. I do, at times, view trailers, but normally I prefer receiving movie suggestions, or I'll view certain films, simply because of an actor, director, etc . . . and go with it. You won't always love the film, but that is the case either way. This way, you're surprised more, when you do.



If I feel a particular film is going to be an important one, then I do my best to at least see it the weekend it opens. Unfortunately this takes a discipline I've not had lately, but I believe in it no less. Sometimes I'll even wait too long and consider my experience tainted. Hype is such an awful thing.



Welcome to the human race...
I agree entirely. If only I had a dollar for every good film I saw that I had already spoiled for myself by reading up on it...
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I really just want you all angry and confused the whole time.



Lost in never never land
It seems fairly impossible to go into many current movies "cold turkey", but I agree, if you know too much or hear too much of the hype it often ends up being a disappointment (r more of one then it should be) because you expect more from the film. I have gotten fairly good at tempering my expectations on films even when they are hyped up a lot, just because I have seen people miss good films because they were expecting it to be great (or the trailer made it look completely different), and it didn't match up to their unreal/incorrect expectations.
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"As I was walking up the stair,
I met a man who wasn't there.
He wasn't there again today,
I wish, I wish he'd go away."
-From Identity



The Adventure Starts Here!
I'm sure Yoda would agree with all of us here on this one, although he's got a dilemma in running a movie site and almost *needing* to know some stuff in advance.

But I have been to enough movies with him over the years where he knew much more than I did going in (sometimes even the ending, like The Sixth Sense and The Village!), and I almost uniformly come out praising the film much more highly than he does.

I purposely STOP watching trailers and commercials for movies beyond the initial ones because I know it changes how I view a movie. For instance, I wish I hadn't known about the creatures in I Am Legend before going in. I might have actually liked the movie a lot more had that been more of a surprise.

I've been known to put my fingers in my ears and do the "la-la-la" thing when a movie commercial comes on the TV if it's a movie I want to keep unspoiled. TOO many trailers/commercials nowadays tell TOO much of the story.

Doesn't the word "teaser" mean anything anymore?



I should have mentioned that there have been a few films that went over my head the first time around, or were so chock-full of subtleties and visual splendor that I found it too much to properly absorb in one sitting. Happens a lot when I sit too close to the screen.



What are your opinions on going into a film cold turkey?
As a teen, I worked in a movie theater where I saw (or mostly heard with occasional glimpses) whatever was playing day after day. This was back in the 1950s when a small town theater would play 4-5 feature films on the one screen each week. So I was exposed willy nilly to whatever was on screen. I discovered that the films getting all of the publicity buzz often (but not always) were better for one reason or another, whereas a great many turkeys were released just to fill up the screens. Later, with a family I didn't have the time or money to take the crap-shoot approach to movie-going, especially when there are movies out there that you don't want to have to explain to your kids or quite their nightmares later. And to me, it's much more interesting to know what the producer went through trying to get this film financed or that one pass the censors, what directors were hired and fired, who was considered for roles, who turned them down, who ended up playing it. I like to know that the author of the book thinks about the movie script they made from his work. If the film is based on a historic event or character, then what was the real person and situation like? Are they sticking to the facts or taking off on flights of fancy? This means I'm more selective about the films I see and at least have some interest in what I choose. Help's me weed out stuff like Porky's that I already know I won't enjoy.



Eisenstein's theory of montage: check it out and see how it applies to this topic. If you're cinema'techie you should enjoy it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sergei_Eisenstein

If you hear or read about a movie before hand, it's gonna' effect you're opinion, whether you like it or not. This could be a good thing or a bad thing. Sometimes its necessary to get info before, sometimes its damaging.

I'm trying to think of a term.....
Mesi Scene
Misi Scene

It has to do with "what's on screen." Someone help me, please?
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MOVIE TITLE JUMBLE
New jumble is two words: balesdaewrd
Previous jumble goes to, Mrs. Darcy! (gdknmoifoaneevh - Kingdom of Heaven)
The individual words are jumbled then the spaces are removed. PM the answer to me. First one with the answer wins.



The Adventure Starts Here!
It has to do with "what's on screen." Someone help me, please?
Ummm ..."what's on screen"? Errr ... "movie"?

No, wait. You mean something else entirely. Sorry.




What are your opinions on going into a film cold turkey?
It's an interesting idea I suppose if you say, live on an iceberg I guess. Nearly impossible today though, unless you don't watch television or listen to the radio or have internet access. Personally I think in the end it doesn't really make a very big difference to me if I'm going to like the film or not if I know nothing about it. I watch plenty of movies on the Sci-fi channel that I don't know a thing about and for the most part they are all pretty bad. A bad movie is a bad movie. I love movies, all kinds of movies. I want to know about them before I see them.

I was reading about I Am Legend months before it came out and I still enjoyed it quite a bit. Do I have bad taste? Probably. I also don't place a lot of expectations on those types of films either. So I have an easier time enjoying them more than some I suppose.
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We are both the source of the problem and the solution, yet we do not see ourselves in this light...



Will your system be alright, when you dream of home tonight?
I just put American Dreamz on my Netflix list on top, all I know it that it is a satire with Mandy Moore. I'll tell you if I experiance it any different
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I used to be addicted to crystal meth, now I'm just addicted to Breaking Bad.
Originally Posted by Yoda
If I were buying a laser gun I'd definitely take the XF-3800 before I took the "Pew Pew Pew Fun Gun."



Aye boy don't spit in my drink!
I wrote this in the Movie Tab thread, but it should go in here too. Further validates my feelings (and a lot of yours) about watching a movie without knowing much about the story beforehand.

The Apartment


This was my first time seeing The Apartment and it was such an experience. Not at all what I was expecting. I've somehow managed to make it through these last couple years of being a wannabe cinephile without ever finding out what the movie was about. On tv they only show the comedic clips of Jack Lemmon acting like a goofball so I went in thinking the movie was about an apartment building full of quirky likable characters and there was one apartment in specific in which some of them would often congregate. Jeez. But my lack of absolutely any knowledge of the film going in made for such a brilliant time! Someone just started a thread about that didn't they? Coincidence?

I was shocked at how bitter sweet the movie was. Wilder did a fantastic job of mixing the comedy with the drama and I really love the way he worked the camera in some scenes. Just as much credit for this film's success is due also to Jack Lemmon who delivered an outstanding performance as the nice guy much in need of a spine. There were points in the movie I actually thought his character was being too nice and understanding, but then I realized I know people like that. Shirley MacLaine also did an excellent job in convincing us that Lemmon's character could actually fall for Kubelik despite her flaws. It didn't hurt that I thought she was a knockout. Short hair rocks!! And I got to mention Fred MacMurray who played his role as a downright acidic sleezeball to perfection. Oh how I wanted to punch him.

Thank God for public libraries and their surprisingly impressive DVD selection.
I also have no idea what The Philadelphia Story and His Girl Friday are about so I'm gonna try and watch both those within the next few days.



Ooh! A Billy Wilder film. I love his work(Double Indemnity is such a great film and the perfect film noir.) and haven't seen The Apartment yet, But I will when the oppurtunity presents itself. I also have managed to make it this long without knowing too much about that film. All I know is it's about an Apartment and Lemmon's in it.

Also,that Sergei Einstein link was very interesting and I've been meaning to see Battleship Potemkn for the longest while I just haven't gotten to it yet.



Aye boy don't spit in my drink!
I'm pretty sure you just misspelled it, but just in case: the dude's name is Sergei Eisenstein*. Not Einstein.

And Double Indemnity is definitely an example of film noir perfection. I wish I could light matches the way Neff did.



Will your system be alright, when you dream of home tonight?
And Double Indemnity is definitely an example of film noir perfection. I wish I could light matches the way Neff did.
That is in my top 100 I belive, good film-noir either way