What I've Been Watching (And How)
We’re thirty-six days into 2016 and I’m yet to see a single film released this year. That doesn’t bode too well for my plan to see more new releases than I saw in 2015. The good news is that I’ve been watching older films. Here’s how I’m doing so far:
- The Hateful Eight (70mm)
- Ivan’s Childhood
- Straight Outta Compton
- The Mirror
- The Man Who Loved Women (35mm; Blake Edwards, not François Truffaut)
- American Dreamz
- A Man Escaped
- Inglourious Basterds (DCP)
- Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan (35mm)
I’m finally tackling a handful of Tarkovsky films, and A Man Escaped is actually the first Bresson film I’ve ever seen. The screening of The Man Who Loved Women was the first I’ve ever attended at the Austin Film Society’s Marchesa Hall. I regret not going earlier. There was a great crowd of cinephiles there; I need to keep going back.
I’ve been going to the Alamo Drafthouse’s “Terror Tuesday” programs on and off since November. A friend who has been going every week for years invited me along then, and I’ve been back a few times. While horror has never really been my thing, Terror Tuesdays (a) costs $3, (b) is always a 35mm print, (c) regularly sells out and (d) features films I’m usually seeing for the first time. So Jason Takes Manhattan may be silly fun, but it was a gorgeous, archival 35mm print and it’s always nice to sit with an enthusiastic audience. Now I’m just waiting for Invisible Man tickets to go on sale.
Tracking What I Watch
I’m trying to more diligently track everything I watch so it’s not a mad scramble come December to figure out what I’ve seen. I still haven’t settled on a single method, so right now when I watch a movie I:
- Add it to a running list in Notes on my iPhone
- Write it down in a Field Notes Ambition Ledger book
- Check in on Swarm if I’m in a theater
- Eventually post it to Letterboxd
- Plus I’ve been toying with using Workflow to enter the films into Day One thanks to Phillip Gruneich’s ambitious scripts
It’s a mess, but I’m okay with that…for now.
Tracking my television watching doesn’t interest me. In fact it would probably depress me if I ever figured out just how much I watch. Most of the time I’d rather watch 5 films, regardless of quality, than a single season of TV.
An Arbitrary Ratio
If I can do it, I’d like to try and keep a ratio of at least 6:1 in terms of old vs. new films I watch this year. In other words, for every six films I watch I should see at least one 2016 release.
Uh…I better get on that…