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Dave's Thoughts On Movies On TV


The Guys from {FILM} is a discussion on movies and films from all eras and genres

Dave's Thoughts On Movies On TV

David R. Smith

As I sit here in my house on a somewhat dreary Sunday afternoon, I was going to work on my chip blog that I've been teasing you guys about for well over a month. Once again, I decided to call an audible. This chip blog might be the Matt Damon on Jimmy Kimmel of blogs. I keep suggesting it's going to happen and then it just doesn't amount to anything. I feel like Benny is the only one who is really upset about this. Sorry Smit.

Anyway. I've been working on another show and I had Netflix on in the background. For some reason I decided I was done with that and elected to switch back over to cable. I figured it's Sunday afternoon, usually there's a good movie worth watching on cable. I wasn't wrong; on AMC they played The Shining and on CTV they played Oceans Eleven. I elected to skip The Shining (even though nothing says Happy Mother's Day like Stanley Kubrick) because I figured I didn't want to watch that with commercials and censoring.

So I, apparently, decided to watch Oceans Eleven. Also with commercials. And censoring.

This led me to the following question: why the hell do we do this to ourselves? I own both The Shining as well as Oceans 11 on DVD. I could watch them literally any time I wanted but I never do. Unless they're on TV both with commercials and censoring. Why do we do this?

It's no secret that my favourite movie is The Shawshank Redemption. I've owned that on DVD for years, because it's my favourite movie. One should have their favourite movie on DVD, am I right? Do you know how many times I watch it on DVD? I bet you I've plugged it into the DVD player five times in the several years I've owned it. Because it's always on TV. And it's ALWAYS commercialized and censored.

It is remarkable how many times I'll stumble across a movie on TV that is halfway through but I'll still watch it. And then I get all pissy when I realize it's been censored and towards the end they play longer commercial breaks than they play movie scenes.  It's excruciating. And yet I never learn.

Today was no exception. I watched the last 45 minutes of Oceans Eleven. In that time, they cut to commercials several times, the word "shit," as sparingly as it is used in that movie, was censored out. It was unbearable.

But did I go track it down on DVD to watch it there? Hell no. I just suffered through it, getting more and more aggravated as the movie went on. 

So I return to this question: why the hell do we do this to ourselves? I know I'm not the only person who does this. I have had several conversations about this exact topic. What possible reason to we have to suffer through asinine commercials and "shit" censored as "shoot" and "yippee kai yay mother fucker" censored as "yippee kai yay Mr. Falcon?" (although that one is more funny than anything. To tell you honestly: I don't know.

I think, when it all comes down to it, we just don't realize we want to watch these movies at the time but when they're on TV, you think "actually yeah, I should watch the last 45 minutes of Oceans Eleven." 

But why don't we plug in the DVD? Because we don't want to watch it THAT badly. That's my theory. There's something so comforting about watching a movie that you've seen a thousand times. Part of it is because you don't necessarily have to pay full attention. You can put it on in the background and enjoy it but you know that if you, say, take a nap, you're not going to miss anything new. 

It's also nice to know that there's no risk involved. I know that sounds absurd, but it's kind of an undertaking watching a new movie. You don't know if it's going to suck, you don't know if you're going to like the content. There's just so much unknown. Granted, it's only 2 hours (on average) but that's still something you have to take on. And on a day where you just want to be comfortable, you don't necessarily want to take that on, right?

I feel like new movies are best left for nights when you can have a drink and focus a bit more. It's best left for evenings.

I also think the other reason I watch those movies on TV is because of the lack of commitment. When a movie I've frequently seen is on TV that is laced with commercials, it means I don't have to worry about watching it all the way through. 

If you listened to our favourite movies from the 90s podcast, you'll know I love Leon: The Professional. That was also on this morning so I also watched that. (I had a lot of work to do on my computer. I needed background noise...) It was also on AMC. That meant it was definitely censored. (Sidebar: apparently you can watch people shoot the bejesus out of each other but a few profane words is enough to call down the thunder. I don't get it. But I digress.)

The movie was laced with stupid commercials. I hated it. But after the main storyline ended (I won't spoil anything, but anybody who has seen the movie knows what I'm talking about) they cut to commercial. I could have watched the last 5-7 minutes when they brought it back, but I didn't need to. I had seen all I wanted to and decided it was sandwich time. 

That's the only advantage of commercialed (definitely not a word) movies. And really, it's not that worth it. I suppose I could turn off movies whenever I wanted to, but I don't. Had I been watching the DVD of Leon (which I also own) I would have watched it through to the credits. It's just the way it goes... With commercials, if you get bored, you can just turn it off. 

So I do. And that's literally the only reasons why commercials are worth it. But every time I see a movie I might want to watch, despite it having a load of commercials, I get sucked into it. It's just the way it goes.

Sometimes it's hard being a grownup.

Happy Monday, folks.

D (@davidronn)