When I was younger I watched movies over and over and over again. I would watch Jurassic Park, rewind the tape, and watch it again. The last movie I remember obsessively watching was Fight Club, which was usually a viewing followed by a viewing with a commentary track, rinse and repeat.
Here are some other movies I was once obsessed with:
Bedknobs and Broomsticks
The Brave Little Toaster
The Godfather II
Willy Wanka and the Chocolate Factory
A Few Good Men
Patterns: lots of Tom Cruise movies. Lots of kids movies (when I didn’t know any better) and movies with catchy tunes. And lots of melodrama.
The most recent film I’ve watched twice in a row was David Cronenberg’s The Fly. You’ve seen it, right? It’s a masterpiece of B-schlock, operatic drama, grotesque horror, and romance. Jeff Goldblum is kind of irresistible as a scientist who accidentally splices himself with a common house fly and subsequently starts losing body parts and storing them in his medicine cabinet. I’ve seen it before and liked it, but the last time I watched it was just magical. Everything about the film clicked and I didn’t want the experience to end. So I stayed up way past my bedtime and watched it again with commentary.
Re-watching interesting movies is probably more important than your first viewing. It allows you to really pay attention to themes and theories and whatnot without the distraction of the plot. But I think it’s those movies with mind numbingly great plots that keep us obsessively watching.
So this editorial is more of an open forum. What are the benefits of watching movies hundreds of times? Are we really picking up on anything new the 25th time we watch a film in a row? Or does watching comfort movies become habit forming in harmful ways?
Which movies do you obsess over?