I always start these anniversary posts with the warning that “I don’t usually like to celebrate such things but here I am going to anyway.” I have realised, though, that it’s something to do with the ten year anniversary of things. That’s the one I like because it’s a nice round number and because it seems like a long time.
Ten years is the one that Film Watch is celebrating. Today.
This is a slightly awkward time to be celebrating the anniversary of one of the most enduring features of my website - because, as part of the changes going on around mrschristine.com (more on that another day), only the most recent Film Watch posts are available. But the archive still exists and will be populated as soon as possible. Turns out, ten years is quite a lot of archived content to unravel.
It was the 23rd April 2009 when I put fingers to keyboard and introduced the concept of my new film live blog/review system. The idea was simple: to encourage me to not only watch more films but also to pay attention whilst I watched them, I would take notes throughout and then publish my findings.
It started out as a solitary activity but Mr C soon got in on the fun, and since then it has been an absolute rollercoaster of an adventure. I would have more stats and facts to share with you if I hadn’t just recently ripped my websites to shreds, but without them, I can simply relish the variety of films we’ve enjoyed.
There have been long series’ (James Bond), new obsessions (Star Wars), terrible disappointments (Cars 2), films where I’ve read the books and Mr C doesn’t have a clue what’s going on (Harry Potter, Hunger Games), films that Mr C claims to have seen before but can’t remember anything about (Rocky 2), films where I am as judgmental as anything and hate it then watch it again years later and wonder what I was thinking (Love Actually).
There have been lots of highlights from the Film Watch project. One of the fun things is when browsing through the archive, I can easily spot some of the genre arcs we go through. You can pinpoint the moments where we are sofa-bound and unwell (far too many kids animations), or where we went through an 80s period, or when we became slightly obsessed with sports movies.
I also really like linking things together. There’s always been plenty of talk about “oh this is that person from that film” but now we have the paperwork to prove it. And the more you watch, the more you note down, the more you blog about this stuff, the more you learn, the more connections are made and the more you realise there’s still so much more to find out.
And that’s the best thing about it all really. There are still so many more movies to enjoy. Putting aside the fact that more are being made all the time, to the point where it’s almost impossible to keep track of all the big releases let alone find time to watch them, we still have plenty of history to catch up on. Predator and Batman and Lord of the Rings and older Disney movies and my resolution this year to dive into more black and white features too. Oscar winners and Indie classics, colourful musicals, emotional dramas, robots in space, dinosaurs gone rogue, you name it, we’ll watch it. Except horror. I’m afraid those are just plain off the table.
So I recommend it. Maybe you don’t fancy taking notes during a movie and then keeping up a blog about it for ten years, and I hear you. But also maybe you could just throw up a quick post about a film you did see recently. And then maybe the one after that too. It’s interesting to see what other people think about movies and it’s really fun to look back on after ten whole years have gone by.
Here’s to Film Watch: to ten years of films, and to ten years more. And to me getting the archive back up and running as quickly as possible!