Thursday, January 1, 2015

2014: The Year of Watching Over 400 Movies

by Melissa Henderson Uhrin
At the start of the year, I set a goal for myself, but after almost everyone I mentioned it to thought it to be extremely unrealistic, I was beginning to think the idea was absurd. But I did it anyways, 'cause I believed in me!

A movie a day for 2014. 'Cause why not?! However, after missing a couple days in the first week, I quickly modified my goal to 365 movies for the year. Bam. (I am currently sitting at 425, with at least seven more to squeeze in these last few days of December) Goal achieved! ...Next level unlocked?

And to top it all off, I took a page from JB's book and kept track of everything I watched in a nice little list.

My year eventually turned into a collection of new-to-me films, revisits, recommendations and a pitiful handful of movies released in 2014. As with most of us, December tends to be my catch up month of all that was missed throughout the year, but with all the busyness that life could possibly throw in one person's direction happening RIGHT NOW, that has proved to be an impossibility.

What is possible though, is giving you all a re-hash of what entertained me this year. Join me if you will for a brief walkthrough of a year in my movie life.
My introduction to F This Movie! was last year's podcast on the guys' Favourite Films of 2013. Spring Breakers was listed as Patrick's number 8 pick for the year, which had me immediately intrigued as I had seen it come up several times on Netflix, but since it looked like a bunch of neon-Disney-princess-in-real-life crap I had avoided it every time. Which of course, as you all should know, couldn't be further from the truth. THANK YOU PATRICK! Thanks to your recommendation, I have pushed the movie onto many others (with mixed responses of course), and will never listen to Britney Spears at sunset while sitting at my white piano without thinking of masked dancing lunatics waving guns around. LOVED THIS MOVIE!!! It is also one of only three films that I watched more than once this year.

Next up, and I have raved about this already so I will keep it short, sweet and to the point: Contracted. The second of the films that I felt required a repeat viewing. And it is truly a different film the second time through.

I found that going through my list and trying to decide on which films to highlight in this piece, I was basically just reiterating those that have already received much praise from the overlords of F This Movie!. And as much as I love showing movie love, I get bored with myself when I am repetitive. So in one quick blurb, here is a short list of my other favourite films that I chose to watch based on F This Movie! recommendations: Death Proof, Witching and Bitching, The Act of Killing, The Innkeepers, Battle Royale, The Woman, Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, Snowpiercer and The Seasoning House (Wait, what? Oh yeah, I recommended that to Patrick. I'm leaving it here because I loved it and it is my recommendation to myself).
And OUTSIDE of F This Movie! (What??) I was given a few choices, of which my favourites are: Dumplings, Guess Who's Coming To Dinner?, Move Over Darling, Searching for Sugarman and The Punk Singer.

Not that I'm patting myself on the back or anything, but I do believe I fared quite well this year with my choices as in going through my list, of the 292 new-to-me movies I watched there were really only a couple obvious losers that I would deem “the worst.” Sharknado? I have wasted too many words on this junk and have nothing more to say. The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones? I don't have a clue about what all the hype was with this new franchise, nothing about it was for me though.

Most of the movies I chose to revisit had been waiting around in my to rewatch list for what seems like an eternity. And knowing that life rarely offers more than one eternity, it will definitely be less time between visits from now on. I seem to get something new from each movie as I watch them throughout the stages of my life. With over a 125 revisits to choose from, here are my favourites in no particular order: Fargo, Galaxy Quest, The Evil Dead (1981), Perfume: The Story of a Murderer, Some Like it Hot and Nosferatu.
And of course to balance this out, there has to be the crappy side of things. Fortunately, I did not waste too many hours on shit. In fact, the two worst films that I revisited this year were The Skeleton Key (Goldie Hawn's daughter get scared by an old voodoo woman) and The Sweetest Thing (sex, sex, penis, penis, and girls peeing in urinals.)

This little goal I set for myself unintentionally turned into an experience that has taught me more about myself than I had thought possible. It allowed me to rediscover my love of history through countless historical documentaries and fact-based historical films, deepened my love of horror tenfold, and, as luck would have it, showed me I really don't have much love for romantic comedies. It has also inspired me to try and top 425 movies in 2015.

I love competing against myself!


  1. 2 questions...
    1. Do you value Patrick's opinion?
    2. Do you have an actual list of the movies?

  2. Wow that's impressive. I figure I would enjoy trying to do something like this, but I haven't the slightest as to whether I would have the dedication to follow through on it. So congratulations on achieving what seems like a very lofty goal. Glad to hear you had fun with it and it didn't burn you out.

  3. Thing the First: Here is a link to my life in 2014!

    Thing the Two: Patrick's opinions are fine. (HAHA! To re-answer: YES! Of course! My movie preferences seem to align quite closely with his, so I tend to jump at most of his recommendations)

    Thanks Tim! I definitely had my doubts about whether I would complete my goal, but here it is 2015 and I'm ready to start anew!

    Happy New Years!

    1. I feel like you watched in a year what normally takes me 4 or 5. I thought I watched a lot of movies.

      Bravo! Happy New Year!

  4. Good for you, Melissa. Back in 2013 I set myself a goal of watching a new-to-me movie every year for an entire year because I was sick of being tempted away from watching new stuff for the old stuff I'd seen already. Made it as far as mid-July that year, then we were hit with a ton of work that kept me working crazy hours for months and had to drop the whole thing when I couldn't make-up the 365 day difference by doubling or even tripling up.. I still have the calendar I was using to mark my progress that year, which after July goes unmarked.

    Looking forward to your Top 10 list on the site later this week. :-)

  5. 425 is a very very respectable effort. Amazing. And 292 new movies is a crazy amount. I have no idea how many movies I have watched though now you got me wondering? I must of done 60-70 ish minimum for SMMonth but there is no way I could keep that pace up and I have no idea how many for the year. A top ten from so many is going to be tough
    And of course you get a big smile from me for Watching The Evil dead again. #BruceCampbellrocks

  6. Great job! I got really into film at the beginning of the summer and similarly started keeping track of all of my viewings and ratings in an Excel sheet and on the website . Got up to 102 by New Year's. I mainly watched over semester breaks, and operating on a college time + money budget, I watched a lot of old stuff on Netflix and DVD. I'm hoping I can push it to at least 3 films/week in 2015 and increase the amount I see in theaters!

  7. Very nice work indeed. Sadly I dont think I'll ever get my movie count that high, too much good TV along with job and stuff keeping me busy but that being said this year was the year i went to at least 20 different movie theatre locations which was a nice change up of things.

  8. Out of interest do you know how many films you have seen last year Patrick? I bet its a crazy number