#1  
Old 08-23-2010, 07:49 PM
When do you know?

A question to all schmoes. When do you know or realize that the movie you're watching is your favorite or even the best you've ever seen? How do you determine it? Is it after multiple viewings of a movie? Do you compare it to other movies you hold in high regard? With Inception,the moment I left the theater I knew I had seen something amazing,but I didn't quite know if it was my favorite of all time. I saw it again and it cemented it for me,so I guess maybe mine was multiple viewings. So let's hear it guys whatcha got?
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  #2  
Old 08-23-2010, 09:26 PM
For me, it was kind of a long, weird odyssey. If you talked to me probably up until 2004, I would've said Godzilla was more of just a pleasure for me, and a fan obsession. I thought the franchise as I had seen it was more of something akin to a Japanese James Bond thing, where the films have a different vibe with different directors and each decade, but none of them that I had seen were actual classic films. What I had seen of the original film in the US version (Godzilla, King of the Monsters) looked truly fascinating and it worked well how they incorporated the American cast into the film, but it left the film feeling hollow and truncated.
In 2004, I was very lucky enough to get a chance to actually see the original version of the film in its re-release here (it was impossible to get hold of imports) at a nice theater in Knoxville (the name of the theater escapes me at the moment) one of only 60 theaters to receive the film in it's seven plus months of release (weirdly enough, never playing in more than six places at a time). I was floored. Here was one of the most provocative, horrific, well made and acted films I had ever seen, that had been kept behind a screen of Raymond Burr and dub jobs for over 15 years. The nuclear warnings and the grieving of the bombings stripped from the original US release spoke to me and crushed me emotionally. Takashi Shimura's solem performance of Dr. Yamane touched me so deeply that it changed my thought process overnight (that of destroying what you don't understand) and, to this day, Akihiko Hirata's haunted Dr. Serizawa's final moments still chill my soul.
I remember popping online to discuss it the next day, only to end up reading Ebert's review as reposted by a fellow kaiju fan. Now, I'm not gonna personally attack Ebert, it's his opinion, he didn't like the film, fine. The problem was that this man was criticizing a brilliant science fiction film about the horrors visited upon innocent people (it's the most kindred soul to Grave of the Fireflies there is that I know of) for its special effects not being up to par with 2004's "flawless special effects" (his words, not mine). I have never since spit such vitriol at a critic on a message board, including Armond White. That was when I knew it was my favorite film.

Last edited by Tyler_Durden_208; 08-24-2010 at 10:42 PM..
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  #3  
Old 08-23-2010, 09:36 PM
Best and favorite aren't necessarily the same for me. Heat has been my favorite movie ever since I saw it about 6 years ago. But I have alot of favorite movies. And before Heat, Equilibrium was my altime fav movie. Now it's second to Heat.

As for how you determine it, I have no idea. I guess it's just how that particular movie affected you and how much long lasting impact it had on you. Some people draw alot of emotion from movies if they can relate to them or they manage to hit a raw nerve.

Why is Heat my fav? Once again, I have no idea. Other than the fact that I love the whole story. The cast, the music, the events that unfold and everything else. It's just my fav. I guess it will be for a few years to come.

Alot of people have a fav, and that stays with them for a long long time.
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  #4  
Old 08-23-2010, 09:52 PM
It is different for me for every great movie. Some examples.

The Dark Knight: I knew inside of the first 15 mins, this was something special.

Pirates 1: Somewhere in the middle, I realized Jack is the best character since Scarface.

The Usual Suspects: At the last scene, I knew I will forever love this film. I was so so most of the way through.

Lock, Stock and 4 Smoking, Snatch, Rocknrolla: All after a couple viewings, I knew these were classic movies.

Transformers 2: After reading all the hate on Joblo.com, I knew TF2 was just awesome.
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  #5  
Old 08-23-2010, 10:10 PM
Great answers guys,tyler I really liked your answer. Keep em coming guys! I know favorite doesn't mean best to a lot people,I wasn't saying that in my op. GoW I agree with a lot of what you said,about drawing emotions from a film,and certain films staying with someone over a long period of time. I've just been curious as to how people come to the decision to name a movie their favorite or the best they've ever seen. Once again great answers so far everybody,keep it up!!
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  #6  
Old 08-24-2010, 01:08 AM
I think with all of my last few "favorite" movies, it pretty much was decided the moment the movie was over. No debating. No hemming and hawing. No soul searching. It was pretty much instant.

With Equilibrium, I think I realized it about halfway or maybe two-thirds of the way in. I knew it was awesome, I just hoped it wouldn't blow the ending. It didn't, and the moment the credits started, it became my favorite.
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  #7  
Old 08-24-2010, 01:22 AM
Most of my favorites have taken multiple viewings to truly appreciate. Whether they resonate emotionally, intellectually, artistically, etc. or whatever combination, for me they need to be films which seem to stick around in my head. Films that for one reason or another I keep coming back to, and usually as a result of that, I make a greater effort to understand and appreciate because I am interested as such. If a film can capture my attention like that, and for an extended period of time, only then would I consider it a favorite, or a "top 10" or however you'd describe it.

Last edited by outsyder; 08-24-2010 at 01:24 AM..
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  #8  
Old 08-24-2010, 03:14 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by PBateman View Post
A question to all schmoes. When do you know or realize that the movie you're watching is your favorite or even the best you've ever seen? How do you determine it? Is it after multiple viewings of a movie? Do you compare it to other movies you hold in high regard? With Inception,the moment I left the theater I knew I had seen something amazing,but I didn't quite know if it was my favorite of all time. I saw it again and it cemented it for me,so I guess maybe mine was multiple viewings. So let's hear it guys whatcha got?
Like you mine was through multiple viewings. I immediately loved it after the first viewing and pencilled it in as number 1. But I felt like I needed to see it again to make sure I didn't miss anything and that it wasn't just the hype. I loved it just as much the second time.

If I'm asked why it's my favourite I can't actually give a coherent answer though. I usually just say because it's brilliant, I never mention the music, the cinematography, the story, the acting etc. and I don't know why, maybe over time I'll get better at it.

I do get pissed off that my brother constantly tells me it's shit because he didn't understand the trailer
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  #9  
Old 08-24-2010, 05:47 AM
It definitely took multiple viewings for me, and it was on each viewing that I liked Unforgiven more and more - and it still happens. I saw things I loved with each additional viewing, learned things about the making of the movie when I wasn't watching it, and it just seemed like a perfect movie to me. There are also the little things I enjoy every time I watch the movie: quotes, cinematography, lighting, performances, camera shots, landscape, and several other things I enjoy noticing. Similar experiences for the rest of my favorite movies as well, not just my all-time favorite movie.

Last edited by bigred760; 08-24-2010 at 06:08 AM..
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  #10  
Old 08-24-2010, 09:38 AM
For me it takes multiple viewings because it has several tests to pass. When I saw Goodfellas for the first time I was so intrigued by the ganster lifestyle and great story that Scorsese was able to adapt onto the screen that I immediately went to the store and picked up Nicholas Peleggi's Wiseguys. It also has to withstand the tests of time. Goodfellas is 20+ years old and isn't outdated by any means. It is simply a movie that I can either set a night to watch on blu ray with a home made meal, or just catch right in the middle of on Spike or something. I can recite any line from the film, name any of the characters, and still get laughs out of the same scenes (i.e. Tommy shooting Spider then saying he was a good shot). From the opening line by Henry Hill where the Tony Bennett song chimes in to the ending clip of Tommy shooting into the camera and the Rolling Stones capping off the film I love every minute of it. And that's how I know it's my favorite movie of all-time.

Last edited by Scotch; 08-24-2010 at 02:16 PM..
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  #11  
Old 08-24-2010, 08:40 PM
For me, for a movie to be your favorite, it has to has immediate impact on you. For me, the first time I saw V for Vendetta, it blew my mind. Everything about it was just awesome to me. The acting, the writing, the cinematography, everything!

However, I think that impact has to be there every time you rewatch that film. Ever since I "decided" that V for Vendetta was my favorite film, it has moved me again and again, every time I watch it. I am never tired of watching it, and I never reject the idea of watching it if someone suggests it.

It is one of those movies where you buy two copies of it so even when some friend borrows it, you can still have a copy on hand to watch it if the mood calls for it.

I will say that I agree that your favorite movie will not always be the movie you consider to be the best movie of all time.
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  #12  
Old 08-24-2010, 09:33 PM
spider-man-After watching it 4 times in the movie theater in 2002 and lots of repeat viewings on dvd i knew this had to be my favorite because i never get bored watching it and i could play the movie in my head scene by scene and debate to my friends why its my favorite plus its a classic.

wanted was my favorite movie at the moment when i made this account in 2008,gotta edit it sooner or later.
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  #13  
Old 08-24-2010, 11:28 PM
I know a movie has affected me if I want to watch it again as soon as it ends. That's what happened to me with Inglourious Basterds, but of course I didn't watch it again right away because I'm cheap and didn't want to buy another ticket.

If I can watch it multiple times and never be bored. I've seen Pulp Fiction over 30 times now, I can quote almost the entire film, and still it's never boring. Also, I have no life.

When it affects me personally.

And then there's the childhood favourites that I've loved since I was a little brat... The Neverending Story was probably the first film I watched in a theater, and I adore it to this day. Same with The Goonies.
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  #14  
Old 08-25-2010, 05:21 AM
I think In everyone's favorite movie there is one scene or even whole act which people fall in love & If the everything else stands up that's when the choice is made. When someone mentions this movie your brain conjures up an image of this great moment of horror, love, loss, violence or whatever Is & It connects with something inside, for me It's LOTR: Two Towers where Gandalf the white appears at the battle of helms deep with the men of Rohan where conclude to mess that shit up, the rest aint bad neither mind.
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  #15  
Old 08-25-2010, 03:47 PM
Great and favorite movies.

A way for me to know if a movie is one of my faves, the movie has to stick with me. I have to see it once and think, "Wow, I have to see that again." One movie that I have watched over and over is "Igby Goes Down," and I feel that movie stuck with me because the delivery of the lines got me.

A recent movie I watched that did the same thing was "Trainspotting." Saw it, knew I would have to watch it again and again. Other examples, The Departed, Closer, Requiem for a Dream, Rocky Horror Picture Show, and there are a lot of others. I still have not found a way to pick out a favorite movie of all time. I just say The Departed because most everyone can agree that is an awesome film, but Shawshank Redemption would also be up there. So in conclusion, I know if a film is great right after watching it, and have to view it several times to make it a favorite.
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  #16  
Old 08-27-2010, 05:53 PM
I'm getting the sense that multiple viewings aren't quite as important to me as they are to most other movie fans. Not that I don't think a movie should be able to hold up to repeated viewings (it obviously should if it's truly great), but I honestly don't really go out of my way to rewatch movies very often. I only own about 50 DVD's, and even then I don't watch them that much. My favorite movie is Paris, Texas, which I've only seen twice. I knew right away that it had affected me like no movie had ever done before that, but I'm not sure I would have called it my favorite movie right off the bat. In other words, it would have made my top 10 after first viewing, but not at #1 right away. It took a few months to build in my head that it was my favorite movie, after I realized that I just couldn't stop thinking about it. The second viewing (after I bought the DVD) confirmed this. That was like 5 years ago, and even though I haven't watched it again since, I still say with ease that it's my favorite movie.

So basically I think for me it has more to do with how long it stays with me rather than how often I can watch it. To tell you the truth, I think the movie I've seen the most throughout my lifetime has been Ghostbusters, and that's only because I watched it obsessively as a kid. I've seen that probably about 30 or so times. Other than that, it's difficult for me to think of any movie that I've seen more than 3 or 4 times, tops. Dr. Strangelove is one. That's about it. For the vast majority of the movies in my top 100, I have seen them twice, MAYBE 3 times, and in some cases still only once.
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  #17  
Old 08-27-2010, 06:19 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by PBateman View Post
A question to all schmoes. When do you know or realize that the movie you're watching is your favorite or even the best you've ever seen? How do you determine it? Is it after multiple viewings of a movie? Do you compare it to other movies you hold in high regard? With Inception,the moment I left the theater I knew I had seen something amazing,but I didn't quite know if it was my favorite of all time. I saw it again and it cemented it for me,so I guess maybe mine was multiple viewings. So let's hear it guys whatcha got?
I feel that Inception is going to have the Matrix effect in 8 years where suddenly people just don't see what they saw in it.

I give films one shot - I instantly know I will love it within the first 20-30 then if it holds my attention for the duration (especially 3 hour films) I pretty much know I love it. If I feel that the story is so compelling that I cannot afford to miss a scene (the lives of others), captures me stylistically(Goodfellas, Reservoir Dogs) or moves me in some way (Eternal Sunshine, Leon) then I know I am in love.

I know I'm not if I clock watch, look around the cinema, could dream of leaving to use a bathroom or come out feeling dejected. It's a crushing feeling that I've felt many times even with some sacred cows. The worst is when you come out saying, Is that it? (Elephant, Slumdog, Pans Labyrinth.)
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  #18  
Old 08-28-2010, 10:14 PM
I'm with the non-multiple-viewings crowd. Not that I have a problem with multiple viewings, quite the contrary - and I should emphasize that I have seen my favorite movies dozens upon dozens of time. But with my #1 favorite, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, I just kind of new right away, when it was over, that I had never seen anything like it and never will. 1 viewing was also enough for others in my top list - Children of Men, Magnolia, Network, Apocalypse Now, etc. The last movies I gave a perfect 10/10 rating to were There Will Be Blood and No Country for Old Men, and those are both films that absolutely shook me to my core upon my first viewing. So it's pretty much an immediate gut feeling for me, for the most part.
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  #19  
Old 09-15-2010, 02:34 AM
It depends upon the story, dialogues, music of the movie
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