The Movies I Should Rewatch Now That I’m Not 14

I have some residual trauma from A Clockwork Orange.

I was around 14 when my fascination with the movies began. At the time I thought my somewhat obsessive movie watching ways would make me stand out from the average teenager. (I would also carry The New Yorker around with me in high school. But that’s a different story.) I realize now that some of the movies I watched during these years were not great choices for an impressionable teenager. For instance, I watched Deliverance with my sister when I was around 14, maybe younger. My sister eventually kicked me out of the room but not before I was rightfully creeped out by Deliverance. When I rewatched Deliverance in college, I suddenly realized how much of this movie I blocked from my memory.

Like that small sodomy incident.

I saw plenty of movies way before I had any real knowledge about cinema and definitely before I could grasp some of the deeper concepts. (That kind of sounds dirty. You get my point.) And just because I was a somewhat precocious kid, doesn’t mean I was the most astute observer. I didn’t always pick up on subtext. Some movies were traumatizing. I don’t remember others and if they come up in conversation, I pretend to have seen them. (“Space Odyssey! Yeah, Hal!”)

So I’ve come up with a list of movies I know I have seen and should probably revisit. Hopefully I’ll understand them this time around.

The French Connection (1971)

I only vaguely recall Gene Hackman being in this movie. Probably because I often confuse it for Serpico. (Note to self: rewatch Serpico.) I am also convinced that Dustin Hoffman was in The French Connection, because Dustin Hoffman starred in every movie in the 70s. (Note to self: Joanna, this is not true.)

The Conversation (1974)

Gene Hackman was in this too. Dustin Hoffman was not. My Dustin Hoffman theory has already been foiled and I’m barely into this post.

The Exterminating Angel (1962)

I remember that everyone is trapped in a room for inexplicable reasons. I also remember sheep and being incredibly confused when The Exterminating Angel ended. I realize this is a common reaction to this movie but I should really watch it again. (And I laughed like the huge film snob that I am when The Exterminating Angel was referenced in Midnight in Paris.)

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958)

I never realized that Paul Newman was a closeted homosexual until I read a biography about John Huston… this month. Subtext? What is that?

2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

I fell asleep somewhere in the middle of this. When I woke up there was a neon floating baby on the screen and I haven’t watched it since. I think I have 2001: A Space Odyssey-related PTSD.

Blow-Up (1966)

There’s a photographer, some naked models, and a dead body. Actually, I believe that is fairly accurate.

Brazil (1985)

Wait. Robert DeNiro is in this? What about Dustin Hoffman?

Last Tango in Paris (1972)

This movie also gave me PTSD. Let’s not get into how I feel about butter since seeing it. I also want Maria Schneider’s hat.

Tom Jones (1963)

I don’t remember a damn thing about Tom Jones. At various points, I have confused Albert Finney for Jon Voight and Tom Jones the movie for Tom Jones the singer. I also thought this movie came out in 1969. If you Google “Tom Jones 1969,” you get this video and not pictures of Jon Voight/Albert Finney in Tom Jones.

These are just some of the movies I should eventually rewatch. As I was putting this list together, one thing stood out. Somehow Midnight Cowboy never confused me. Probably because it has inspired me to be an angry pedestrian at all times.

I just wanted to actually include Dustin Hoffman in this post.

Also, somehow my parents never caught on that I watched any of these movies. This isn’t surprising. I’m the youngest of four kids and by the time I showed up, my parents were done parenting. How else do you think I accidentally saw Psycho when I was 5?

Oh… No wonder I’m all sorts of f’ed up.

Do you have any movies you saw far too young and should probably revisit? Do you have any additional suggestions for my list? Am I just crazy? (Don’t answer that one.) Sound off below.

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