The boyfriend and I have embarked on watching movies that have a lot of pop cultural significance that one of us hasn’t seen. Thus far, we’ve watched the first two Alien films and Terminator for the ones I haven’t seen and Singin’ in the Rain and Rear Window for him. Technically, I’d seen Alien already but hated it and he re-watched it with me, highlighting it’s technical brilliance while also making it much less scary. When I’d watched it the first time, the person who suggested it wanted me to be scared versus enjoying the film, so I appreciated being taken through the film as a technical item of suspense brilliance, which while I probably won’t rewatch it, I did actually see the second time around. It’s been fun coming up with a list of films for us to watch, thinking about how much cultural impact some films have had and others not so much. I think Charade is essential, but there aren’t many pop culture references to it. Rear Window, on the other hand, defines the suspense genre in many ways.
This whole thing partly started because I still haven’t seen Office Space–it’s on the list–, but we both realized that our childhood movie watching had been defined by different things. My parents loved classic film, and the brother wouldn’t go to sleep without some kind of noise, so they let him listen to WRR, the classical music station. It definitely influenced his taste; he was probably the only 10 year old I knew who loved opera. So, we watched a lot of musicals as kids. The brother loved Rex Harrison in My Fair Lady, although Audrey Hepburn became his muse later on. The boyfriend grew up on 1980s action films, the ones I missed, and more bawdy comedy than I liked in my early twenties that I now find funny. (It’s amazing how your tastes change.) I like the sharing, and how it makes me appreciate different things. I also had a little too much fun mocking Linda Hamilton’s horrible 1980s hair in the first Terminator film, and the “I’ll be back” line just didn’t feel iconic in the film. Suggestions welcome, although Seven Brides for Seven Brothers is already on the list. It’s just so wrong, and yet, you just have to watch it.