March 7, 2002

Gotta Have It

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It’s been said that music can add increased dimension to someone’s life by creating an audio “soundtrack” for our daily activities. I am sure you all have that favorite “Morning” song or that song you play to get you amped for a night out partying or that perfect melody you play just before you get into bed with your special someone.

While music is very well known as being a part of a daily ritual, what about film, the great visual chronicle of our century? Although we don’t necessarily have two free hours in our day to watch a whole movie, we probably should make time for one. After all, movies are a great way to escape the daily grind of Cornell and take a few hours to relax and immerse yourself in a two dimensional world where the good guys are easy to separate from the bad. But what if your video collection simply consists of your High School Prom Video, last week’s Simpsons, and that one episode of Family Guy you’ve seen three hundred times? Hopefully the following selections will give you some ideas as to what to add to your film library for certain “choice occasions.”

The Make-Out Movies

The greatest case for film as part-of-life is the “Make-Out” movie. After all, it seems as though VCRs were tailor-made for hooking up. With the requisite dim lighting and close proximity of people on most household futons, it’s a recipe for romance. The aforementioned film needs to fit one of two criteria: it can’t be too feminine (sorry Bridget Jones) and it can’t be too masculine (naked butts in Braveheart won’t make this cut). In addition, the film needs to have a storyline that starts off fast-paced so that you can fool yourself into thinking you are actually watching the film for the full two hours. After careful audience analysis I have found one of the best make-out movies to be The Rock. For the women, it contains Sean Connery and a fairly interesting story. For the men it has action and adrenaline. In addition, the story is simple and the overt sexuality is limited to a short sex scene in the beginning of the movie which means the girl next to you isn’t constantly reminded of how hot Cameron Diaz looks in a tube top (but she is hot, isn’t she?).

The Late Night Picture Show (“You Are Home”)

So, another night at Dino’s and you’re spent. You have a pretty good buzz on and after-hours at your place is winding down at around 3 a.m. What better way to end an evening than by watching a film about the coming of age of a young man set to the background of the greatest period of rock and roll- the 1970s? Almost Famous, Cameron Crowe’s latest opus, is a great film that contains some great music written by Peter Frampton and Elton John and arguably the greatest sing-along in film history to John’s “Tiny Dancer.” Another great late-night treat is the recently released Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back. This film, a neo-stoner flick, contains some great gags and actually increases in humor as the evening goes on. Get this one on DVD and check out the extras. They’re a scream.

The Day Your Girlfriend Left You

So you’re done. You had the requisite conversation, you’ve spoken to all of her friends and there is just no way you will be getting back together. There are a couple of things you can do: write an article like this one, hook up with one of her friends, or go waste your sorrows away at Johnny O’s. My suggestion would be to pop in a movie and see what Lloyd Dobler has to say on the situation: “I gave her my heart; she gave me a pen” – the signature line from the great flick, Say Anything. This movie is a great way to renew your hope. Oh, and by the way, the other suggestions mentioned above aren’t mutually exclusive so if you’d like, invite one or two of her friends over for a drink to watch this movie.

Just Before a Test

The night before a test should be spent relaxing. That is my motto at least. According to the College Board (the creators of the SATs), you should eat a good meal and get a good nights rest and relax the day before the exam – these guys somehow made 1600 a holy number so who am I to argue. My personal favorite movie and must-own would be Secret to My Success and Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. These films staring Michael J. Fox and Matthew Broderick, respectively, are icons of what it takes to truly do well and still get the girl without the use of a scantron sheet and No. 2 pencil. Don’t be surprised if you see me humming “Baw-Baw-Chicata-Pah!” on my way to my next Government prelim.

So gather your movies, couch potatoes, and be warned there are plenty of other make-out movies and pre-game films for your pleasure so be adventurous and explore new and different options (Girls Beware: my friend recently decided Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death would be his knew “after-hours” movie). Even though life can be tough here at Cornell, as the Eagles sang in their song James Dean, “I know my life/ will be all right/ when I see it on the silver screen.” So true.

Archived article by Ryan Silbert