(If you can believe it, I now own this large standee.)
Everyone has a favourite thing. Whether it was a stuffed animal growing up, a favourite place to vacation, or even a beloved family member, it is common knowledge we all develop feelings for things like and things we don’t like.
I was exposed to movies growing up like the majority of the population in the United States. The movie industry was growing leaps and bounds every year, and the ’80s left us with some of Hollywood’s best and longest-standing comedies, action movies, and thrillers. At this point in my life, I was hooked on Disney movies like every other kid. It wasn’t until my ninth birthday did I really get invested in regular movies.
It was my dream as a kid to become a firefighter, so when Ron Howard released Backdraft in 1991, it became my favourite movie of all-time. Firefighting is a dangerous job, and there are days when guys go to work and never make it home. Howard’s perception of this heroic job and the drama that comes along with it was so fantastic to me that my mom took me to see it about a dozen times. Backdraft also happens to be the first movie poster I ever collected.
People change over time, and so do their interests. Backdraft remained at the top of my favourite movie list, even though I watched hundreds of new movies throughout the 1990s. It wasn’t until 1999 when my uncle bought me my first DVD player did I expand my taste and knowledge of movies. He introduced me to Meet Joe Black, which is a romantic drama starring Brad Pitt, Anthony Hopkins, and Claire Forlani. This passionately romantic movie is about death taking a holiday, in the body of a young man, who falls in love with the daughter of a guy whose souk he’s there to take. The romantic chemistry of the two leads and the brilliance of Anthony Hopkins really won me over, both in my mind and my heart.
After a title reign of about eight years, there was finally changed at the top spot. Christopher Nolan reintroduced Batman to the world, in a movie about his past, training, and development of the caped crusader. Batman Begins rivalled Batman and Batman Returns while launching one of the most successful trilogies of all-time, The Dark Knight. I can still remember that first time I watched Christian Bale don the bat suit. The movie captivated me because it is an epic back story to one of my favourite superheroes, on top of being a great action movie with an all-star cast.
Little did we know that Batman Begins was indeed only the beginning, and Christopher Nolan outdid himself with the next Batman installment, The Dark Knight. Everyone flocked to the theatres to see his masterpiece, which is still considered one of the greatest movies of all-time. Crazy, dramatic, and heartbreaking, The Dark Knight is almost everything you could ever hope for in a film. After moving to Canada in 2008, The Dark Knight was the first movie I ever watched at a Cineplex theatre, which was such a fantastic experience. It sounds ridiculous, but back home, the theatres were small in size, and if you ever wanted to go to a multiplex, you had to travel out-of-town. There are many Cineplex theatres here in the city, which makes going out to see movies on the big screen with a fantastic sound and comfy chairs all that easier. The Dark Knight and the Cineplex theatre environment really changed my perspective of going out to the movies, which has since become my favourite hobby.
Rise of the Planet of the Apes came out in 2011 and bought life to a once thought dead franchise. I honestly didn’t think much of it after the first viewing, but something about it clicked when the first trailer for Dawn of the Planet of the Apes was released. The hype and anticipation I had for Dawn were on the same levels I once felt for The Dark Knight, which is saying something since I was never really a fan of the original apes’ movies. What won me over (warning spoilers ahead) was how great a leader Caesar became. He gave everything he had to help his kind be free and live in peace without any restrictions. When he gets gunned down and left for dead, I cried, a lot. As he is getting rescued, his only concern is for his family and not his own health. It’s at that moment I realized he was more than just an ape. Caesar is inspiring as an ape and as a leader. His character is so amazing to me that I wish I was an ape so I could be in his pact. I still hold back the tears for everything he suffers in Dawn because I got heavily invested in the characters and their epic story.
It is safe to say that my taste in movies has changed quite rapidly over the last decade. I have definitely expanded my interests and been more open to watching things I never thought would be worth my time. Out of all the thousands of movies I’ve seen in my lifetime, there is now one thing I know for sure; Caesar is now my favourite character of all-time. You may ask why or how do I know for sure, so let me tell you that I’ve now seen War for the Planet of the Apes nine times, and I can’t stop myself from bailing every single time. (spoiler) When the movie ends, and Caesar’s chapter in the Planet of the Apes saga comes to a close, I feel like I’ve lost my best friend. I still have a hard time believing he is gone. The entire movie may never live up to everyone’s standards, but if you’re emotional and attached to these characters as much as I am, then you’d be brokenhearted too.
Movies are made to spark something inside of us. That’s the reason so many of us spend countless hours staring at a screen hoping to be moved, inspired, or engaged deep into a story. My passion for movies has led me to create a blog where I write reviews as a hobby. The majority of us have come here seeking the same thing, whether it is to read fun articles or write for a living. You know a little bit why I am here and which movies I love, but what about you? What is your story, and what do you love about film?