Friday, June 8, 2007

Shared Dreams

Unlike Kate, I hate going to the movies. I hate being cold in the theater –or hot, having no place to put my feet up. I hate that woman who always seems to take the seat behind me and proceeds to narrate the movie to her husband: “Oh, she’s pregnant and it’s not his. . .” “See, she’s got a gun tucked in to her waistband. She’s going to try to kill him . . .”

I hate having to go to the bathroom and not being able to pause the movie while I go. I hate the smell of stale popcorn. And I hate when my shoes stick to the floor.

That said, I do love movies. I just love them on my own TV screen, in my own den, on my couch with the fireplace going in the winter or the air conditioner going in the summer. I like the pause button, the nearby fridge, the rewind that lets me listen again to something I may have missed.

My recurring character, Teddi Bayer, often gets together with her best friends, Bobbie and Diane for what they call Girls Night In where they watch old movies. Often it helps them solve the mysteries in the books. Which brings me to another thing I like about movies– I can rent them from Netflix without even leaving the house and when they come I can spend an afternoon watching a movie and call it working!

My all time favorite movie is It’s a Wonderful Life with Jimmy Stewart and Donna Reed. First off, I love Christmas movies in general (like romances, they always guarantee a happy ending) and second, I do love Jimmy Stewart. Could watch him in anything. I love all the old movies, the ones with Katherine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy, with Clark Gable, Cary Grant . . .

I loved Life is Beautiful, which I only bring up now because the title is similar to It’s a Wonderful Life, though the stories are not.

I’m a sucker for sentimental movies, like An Affair to Remember. (There’s Cary Grant again!) I flipped for Somewhere in Time, that one with Jane Seymour and Christopher Reeve where he goes back in time for her. It was filmed at the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island in Michigan and a few weeks ago my husband and I went there for a romantic weekend getaway. We rented our own horse-drawn carriage and went off into the countryside. That's my husband driving the carriage in the photo. I have a terrible voice, but there was no one for miles and I sang “Chicks and ducks and geese better scurry . . .” at the top of my lungs. It took everything I had not to run across their lawn yelling “Richard! Richard!” (This may mean nothing to you if you haven’t seen the movie, but if you have, you know. Oh, you know!

I like surprising movies, like the foreign films Bread and Tulips and Saving Face, both of which we rented from Netflix because they sounded “okay,” and then loved.

What I suppose I like best about movies is that they are like sharing your dreams. There you are, in another place and time, only whoever is around you is there with you. It’s a shared experience, though it drives me crazy when people like movies I hate, or don’t like movies I love.

It’s the same with books. Only better.

Stevi Mittman


Virginia said...

I am like you Stevi when it comes to movies. I prefer to watch the movie at home. Movies just don't seem to be as good as they used to be and they are really your dreams. I love Clark Gable your Gone With The Wind type movies. They don't make them like that anymore. I think books are better then movies anymore, they are my dreams. If you can find you a copy of Rebel Temptress by Constance O'Banyon, it is just like Gone With The Wind, but the book is out of print. I can get into a good book and kind of live that book if you know what I mean

Stevi Mittman said...

A good book creates a world for you to live in for as long as you are reading it (sometimes longer!) the same way a movie creates its own world on the screen. The advantage of a novel, in my mind, is that you get to cast it yourself, and you get to supply all the visuals. I almost always hate it when they turn a book I've read into a movie because the actors they've chosen are not the characters I've imagined.


Carol said...

I prefer to watch a movie at home, too. That's why I've only been to one movie in years and that's because my kids wanted me to go with them.

I prefer books over movies. They did do a good job with Gone With the Wind but most of the time they don't. I also like to imagine what the characters look like. The actors never look like I think they should!

foxyllady said...

I don't go out and watch movies anymore, we do the netflix thing and get all our movies in the mail. I love Its a Wonderful Life with James Stewart and cry everytime I watch it. Have the movie so can watch it anytime I want. Love Gone with the Wind and have that one too.

Tammy said...

My favorite movie is also "It's a Wonderful Life" with Jimmy Stewart. Absolutely LOVE it! I actually do enjoy going to the movies, though, because I love to see the action on the huge screen. My favorite thing to do is read, though... love to be able to make my own "movie" in my head.

Nancy in CA said...

While doing a Google search for Christopher Reeve TV moive The Last Ferry Home, I was brought to this blog...not sure why. But hopefully someone can help me. Part of this movie was filmed on the ferry between Cape Cod and Martha's Vineyard in '92 or '93. My husband and I were on this ferry, but have never seen the movie. I believed it aired on the East Coast, but not the West Coast. We would love to either rent or buy the movie if someone can help. Thanks, Nancy in CA

peeperatiel2000 said...

I so agree with you Stevi. I HATE watching a movie anywhere besides my living room. (I know my butt will fit in my seat there!)

As a general rule I don't watch movies that I have read the book to because it takes away from how I have casted the characters. It ruins the whole thing for me.

tam said...

If I watch a movie I prefer to watch it at home. However, the books are always much better than the movies. If I do anything at all I would prefer to watch the movie first then read the book. It helps to visualize the story in my head as I read it and the picture is so much better. If I read the book first the movie will surly be a let down because the book will always have more parts to it.

Stevi Mittman said...

I thought I was the only one who didn't like going out to the movies. I suppose if that was true, Netflix wouldn't be such a success.
We saw a neat movie the other night from Netflix--Greenfingers, which we rented because we adore Helen Mirin. As it turned out, she only had a small part in the movie, which was actually very good. It was one of those little films that make you smile. I was going to describe it, but it sounds hokey and like something even I wouldn't want to watch.
Anyway, you might give it a try. It's no It's a Wonderful Life but you might like it.

photoquest said...

Sunday afternoons was my day to lay out on the couch and watch 2-3 movies back to back. I took up reading about a year ago and my Sun. movie watching has stopped. However, if there is another Pirates of the Carribean movie I will however go see Johnny Depp on the Big Screen.