Dec 4, 2008

Me's Five Things that Define you: Movie Edition

So, keeping up with my dear friend Joker, I've decided to also write a series - been quite a while that I haven't done it. This time, it's five things that define you. Just five things that for some reason makes sense to you. This first installment is all about movies. Not five movies you like best. It's five movies that make you who you are or have impacted you in a way that go beyond normal. The idea is that you participate - come on people, just click in the comment box and let us know how you think, we need your feedback!

Alas, here are mine. Hope to see what you come up with... In no particular order:

1) The Godfather I, II, and III.
Duh. If you have read this blog for over 3 months, you surely know that I define values by the Corleones. Loyalty and an eye for and eye is law in my book. All the rules of life are there in those movies. If you break your word, you are dead to me. If you are loyal, I will be loyal to the end and beyond. Keep your friends close and your enemies closer. I can go on and on. Granted, this is a movie about killers. But deep inside, the movie carries a bigger message. It's all about sticking together. Never take sides against the family? Jesus. Those scripts are like the Bible to me.

2) When Harry Met Sally.
I hate chick flicks with a passion, but this movie, for some strange reason, connected in a way for me that no other "romantic comedy" did. It made sense. Now I know that it was because the two people that wrote it had gone thru hell and back in their relationships, and all the funny scenes were based on real life situations. Besides, I have never heard a script sound more real than that. All the damn scenes, every single one of them, I have lived at some point in my life. I kid you not. ALL OF THEM. And the irony is that when I lived them, I laughed because I remembered the movie. I even lived the scene at the end - well, it didn't happen on a New Year's Eve but still, I had my Harry come over to my house and tell me almost the same thing. And yes, for the most part, men and women can't never be friends because the sex part will always get in the way. Don't believe me? Ask Joker and Ms. Joker. Ask Restrictions and Ms Restrictions. Ask me and Travis. (Yep, I said it. Call the cops.)

Wait. The only exception to the rule, and Harry would maybe disagree with me, is that from 10 friends that a woman might have in her life, there are maybe two that she will never bang. The rest... yup.

3) Tie: The Paper and All the President's Men

That was the key motivating thing that made me think: I need to write. The power of a writer cannot be measured. I have to define what those two movies did for me because, even though they are about journalists they share one thing in common: passion.

First, The Paper showed me that you have to have passion for what you do. You strive in doing it right. And very much like advertising, there are some assholes who want you to write what they want, instead of what you think is right. It is a very simple movie for some, but for me, watching those characters really wanting to make things right by just writing one story made me want to write about ANYTHING. I needed that passion, I needed that struggle with other people. There was something about that flick that made me realize that I was born to write. Even if it was a simple 30ss ad or this blog. I just needed to write.

Second, All the President's Men shook me up like no other journalism flick because with that one I realized how powerful writers are. They can change the world. They can make or break one person. They can change history. Bernstein and Woodward, played by the incomparable Hoffman and Redford were simply incredible for me at a young age. Think about it: two dudes fought against the most powerful organization in the world, the United States Government and its president... and won. That is what I call writers.

3) Reservoir Dogs
Blood. Cursing. A great script. This was the first Tarantino movie that I saw. This was different for one thing: when you write, you have to make it sound authentic. You cannot stand there and tell me that wasn't one powerful script. And so simple! It's all done around people talking in a warehouse in God knows where, people! Besides that, it sparked a love for anything bloody and a bit gory. I had to stop the VHS (yep, it was that time, remember those?) because I was having difficulties with all the blood. I took a breather and kept on going. From that single movie, I researched more about Tarantino, which lead me to find true gems like Battle Royale and other great movies from other countries.

4) American Beauty
Have you lived your life asleep at some point? Have you ever just conformed around your life because you don't know any better? Have you forgotten, at some point, who you really are? I sure did. I am not ashamed to say that many years back I was Lester Burnham. I ended up living a situation that I didn't like. I once lived under a marriage that was broken beyond belief. I lived under a body that I did not like. I had a job that was a dead end. But instead of just living day to day and making shitty excuses or promising things that I could not deliver, I decided to wake up. I got divorced, not only for me to get a new life, but for him as well, so he could find someone that really loved him. It was only fair. I decided to change jobs until I could gather up the courage to go at it by myself. I stopped bullshitting myself about how I didn't mind the extra pounds and changed my diet and my will as well... ended up dropping all the weight in about a year. I just stopped lying to myself and learned one simple thing: when you really want one thing, when you really want to improve, there is nothing that can stop you but you alone. I am not Lester anymore. But I keep watching it over and over again to remind me that I cannot lose focus, even for one bit.

5) Chasing Amy
At some point in our lives, we encounter the difficult task of falling in love with someone and having the world against you. Maybe you find the perfect person in the world, but there is one thing about you being happy that makes the rest of the people you know angry. The sad thing is, they will do or say whatever it takes to make you fail. Truly demented people with nothing better to do than to wish you bad luck or bad things happen to you instead of thinking that, like themselves, you deserve to be happy.

Do you follow your heart and say fuck it, I'm happy, forget the rest? Yes. You. Do. Chasing Amy is - apart from the dick and fart jokes - a story about falling for the perfect person at the worst moment. It's about fighting the world because you know you deserve to be with the one that you love. There are some that don't make it. And there, there are the rest of us who say fuck you, I deserve to be happy. And the end, we do.

So there it is, my Top 5 movies that define me. If you want to take more time to think about writing back, by all means, just send me your Top Five movies at and I will post them here. If you have them already, just write away.

Stay tuned for next week, I will post a new Top Five things that define me. I hope you join the fun! With love, Me.


RestrictionsApply said...

Next up: Me's Infinite Playlist?

Me said...

For that one I would need a month. Hard shit to do, just five songs.

Get cracking on your list!!!! Hehehe.

RestrictionsApply said...

When Harry Met Sally should be required viewing in college. Life lessons abound in this film that ring true today and will continue to do so for a long time.

And as for American Beauty, well, that just made me love my wife even more.

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