The Eighth Page

A Few of my Favorite Things

The year is 1994. I, a young boy of eight with rosy, baby’s-posterior-soft cheeks and a winning smile, sit in a darkened movie theatre, crying. Images dance on the screen at which I stare, filling my heart with warmth. The film is The Lion King, and I have not been the same since. Flash forward to 2003. Although time has stripped my cheeks of their healthy tint of rose, I find myself sitting, once again, absorbing the 89 minutes of magic that is The Lion King. And, of course, I am weeping uncontrollably. Oh, Simba, you’ve finally become the mature, courageous lion I always knew you could be. I’m so proud! Needless to say, my relationship with the cinema remains strong after all these years. But my love for American cinema is not limited to The Lion King, though I do watch it once a week (twice a week during my “I miss my mommy” periods). My taste, surprisingly, is also not limited to Disney films; in fact, I enjoy practically all movie genres. I’ll start out with my personal favorite, the romantic comedy. I have spent innumerable Friday and Saturday nights tissue box at my side, soaking up the dynamic duo that is Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan. No matter how many times I watch them (I once went on a Kate and Leopold marathon – ten viewings in one day), they never seem to get old. Warning must be given, however, to anyone who, like me, is overly emotional or sensitive: romantic comedies can be proverbial roller coaster rides for my heart, my soul, my everything. One minute you’re laughing because sweet, loveable Tom Hanks bumped his head on the cabinet, and the next thing you know your body is gyrating every which way in violent weeping fits because Meg Ryan’s son was mauled to death by Tom’s golden retriever. Personal Favorite: You’ve Got Mail. If the video store’s all out of Sleepless in Seattle, you may have to default to the ever-popular “teen movie” genre. If you thought that teen movies were entertaining only for giddy pre-pubescent middle school girls, think again: they’re also quite enjoyable for lonely teenage boys with a knack for sewing. I’d be hard-pressed to think of a more enjoyable evening than gazing for two hours into the creamy vastness of Freddie Prinze Jr.’s dreamy face. But despite the comic moments found in most every teen movie, there are bound to be a few tear-jerking moments in every one. Get the tissues ready, because they’re going to flow, and they’re going to flow hard. Personal Favorite: Summer Catch. Sometimes, though these times are rare, you get sick of hysterical bouts of laughter and crying. Sometimes you just need to let loose and hit something, and it’s these times when action movies are just the ticket. Personally, I’m a big fan of Jet Li; he gets me all pumped up to do my flexibility exercises. Hearing that man yell and shriek as he flies through the air unleashes my inner pamplemousse. Personal Favorite: Enter the Dragon. Yowzers! For those nights when you’ve got a hot date, sometimes there’s nothing better than turning off all the lights, locking all the doors, and putting on a good horror movie. Of course, you don’t need a date to watch a scary movie – I watch them all the time. I do, however, need to have Mr. Schnoodles (the “specialest” stuffed badger in the whole wide world) by my side to comfort me during those thrilling scenes. Be careful, though, because in my experience it’s very easy for the neighbors to mistake your high-pitched shrieks of fear for a sicko backyard seal-clubbing operation. [Editor’s Note: Christian, you need more of that sound-absorbing foam to baffle the cries of those poor, cute, endangered and delicious seals. Trust me.] Personal Favorite: I Still Know What You Did Last Summer. With all the sex and violence in movies today, sometimes it seems as if there’s nothing suitable for younger viewers. Rare as they may be, there are still quality family-oriented films being released, and they’re not just for little kids, either! I watch Rugrats in Paris whenever I’m feeling a little down, and it perks me right up. That Tommy Pickles sure is a cute little devil. Family films are also great if your mom won’t let you see R-rated movies. I try to tell her that I learn about the birds and the bees in Life Issues class, but she just shakes her head and says something about knowing that having children was a mistake. Weird.