#000. The Overture

Welcome one, welcome all! My name is Ben, and I will be your guide through the deep and interconnected world of cinema. While Hollywood does have a tendency to re-use some ideas, sometimes these ideas produce some excellent cinema. My goal through this blog will be to expose you to movies that you’ve seen; and hopefully, movies that you haven’t.

Each week, I hope to bring you two movies that are in some way connected to each other. Here’s the catch: not only are the two movies each week connected, but one of those movies will be one that I brought to you last week. This way, through a long chain of connections, you can see how ideas, motifs, themes, actors, and directors can span across a wide variety of films. Think of it as a never ending “6 degrees of Kevin Bacon” game. I hope that I will not repeat movies outside of the week-to-week connections, but some films are so diverse that you might see some familiar ones pop up now and again.

The movies that I will bring to the table each week will be ones that I have personally seen in their entirety and that I think deserve some of your time to sit down and watch. I will explain what makes the movies interesting, be it through artistic styling, superior acting, superb direction or a unique attribute. Now you may be asking yourself, “Why should I care about the film opinions of some guy on the internet?” A valid question, to which my answer is the following cinematic resume:

I suppose that my love of good movies started when I managed to watch all 100 films in the American Film Institute’s “100 Years, 100 Movies” lists (both the original 1998 version and the 2007 10th Anniversary edition). I have also seen every film that has won an Oscar for Best Picture, as well as many of the nominees. To top these achievements off, I actually own on DVD or Blu-Ray every film from these lists, with the few exceptions being films that have not made the jump to the digital age (generally older films fit in this category, although there are only 3).

Also, I have taken a college course on Film Studies (with more than passing marks), which required me to not only analyze movies, but to perform the multitude of necessary steps to film and produce one of my own (which can be seen here).

Finally, this blog is somewhat of an extension of a series of articles I wrote in Grad school for the school newspaper. While I did movie reviews of the films that were being released at the time, these articles went by the name of “Must See Movies”, and would generally include descriptions of 3 films tied together by a common theme, and one film within the theme that I would give as a “Homework Assignment”. As such, those who have read these articles may see some repeated reviews, merely in a different format.

Now that you have an idea of my credentials, I hope that you’ll enjoy learning some things about your favorite films, as well as finding some new favorites. I truly enjoy movies, not only as escapes from reality, but for the creativity that it takes in order to get ideas all the way to the big screen. Therefore, since movies are one of my many passions, as the opening music comes to a close, and as the curtains part, may I merely say, “Lights! Camera! ACTION!”

Cinema Connections Collection (circa March 2011)