Monday, May 15, 2006

The ultimate drug - movies

My name is Chris. I am 32. I am addicted to...movies. I find that for me, movies are a mood altering drug. That's right movies. I could abuse alcohol, nicotine, drugs, sex, etc. But no, I choose to abuse my DVD player.

I come from a long line of film-o-holics. (It must be genetic.) I remember as a kid when my brother and I would go to spend the weekend with my dad. We would watch at least three movies (one on Friday night and two on Saturday night!) a weekend. (Now I can do that in one day! I have a problem.) Surely during the day we would do other things, but after dinner we would break out the VHS tapes and go into a fictional land of bliss...

In high school and college, it was not unusual for me to spend a Friday evening with a couple of films, a pint of ice cream, and my favorite two-liter carbonated beverage of choice and live vicariously through the actors on the screen. (Yes, I was a very exciting date in high-school.)

Somehow I always felt better after watching a movie. Before watching a film I could feel uptight, anxious, or sad, but something would happen as the tape played (something other than consuming way too much caffeine and sugar). As the credits rolled, I would feel...well, better.

Escaping into a story other than my own was liberating. I could experience adventures/emotions/actions vicariously through the characters in the movie
without the expense (physical, emotional or otherwise) of really living them.

But, the point I have come to is the amount of time spent watching movies. Let's say that movies are about two hours long, give or take. If I watch a bad movie, then I just wasted two hours of my life on a bad movie. And if I watch 12 bad movies, I have just wasted one day of my life. I am ready to stop wasting time on fiction and start living reality (well, almost ready). So I am trying to be more discerning about what I watch. I am also trying to be more reflective in why I feel the strong urge to watch a film. Am I looking for escape? If so what am I trying to escape and how might I deal with it in less time than it takes to watch a bad movie?

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous11:36 PM

    man i feel ya...actually, i feel like movies have been like my best church ever at certain points of my life.
    i wander blockbuster trying to find that obscure indy film (they even carry some now) that will move my heart, push my mind and inspire my soul to change.
    the movie junkie in me even has fantasies of acting... creating some amazing, deep art. a girl can dream...