What I Learned From 2014

This is not a “Best of 2014” list. This is an obituary for a blog.

“On December 31 2014 , the final post of For Cinephiles by a Cinefille miraculously appeared on the Internet. It had terrible SEO and even worse grammar. Thanks to a grand total of seven blog posts all year and after a nearly five month absence, no one bothered to read it.”

Just kidding. This blog isn’t going anywhere.

It isn’t necessary for you to read this post. It is more necessary for me to just write something, anything, on the final day of 2014, to force myself to get back to blogging.

I spent most of 2014 actively forgetting I had a blog. It didn’t really work. As I avoided publishing any content, the blog has been patiently waiting for me to draft a post, to type words and sentences, to reflect on a movie I just saw. I went through the motions many times. In one attempt to force myself to write, I posted on Twitter that I would be blogging again. (As if Twitter would hold me to my word.) Despite nice feedback and general enthusiasm from my (social) network, I never completed the task at hand.

It’s not that I lack opinions on the movies I’ve seen lately. The Imitation Game, for instance, left me in a stunned silence – as far as biopics go, it is one of the best of recent memory. I found Birdman to be exhilarating, Foxcatcher to be underwhelming, Gone Girl to lack a penis and Unbroken to be the movie I irrationally hate.

I just needed some time off from publishing those opinions here.

2014 has been a bizarre and lackluster year. At the beginning of the year I was un(der)employed, broke and frustrated. By September I was getting my shit together – I started a graduate program, moved, began working steadily again. That is where I needed to put my energy and after a few months off, I finally feel ready to return to this blog. I still won’t post as much as I once did. But it won’t be on hiatus as it has been.

I took the year to reconsider what I want out of this blog, how much of my Internet persona (we all have one) I want to maintain. I’ll never delete this blog because, well, I started it over 9 years ago.  There’s a lot stored here. I’ve put so much time, energy, money, and pain into creating a space for myself on the Internet that it would be impossible for me to completely walk away.

It was surprisingly easy for me to stop blogging. Not only have I become frustrated with the blogging process, but I’ve also become increasingly underwhelmed by the state of Hollywood. The new and current film industry – one that is built around sequel after sequel and multi-platform storytelling (thanks Marvel) is actually quite draining as a viewer when you are only casually invested. You spend more lamenting on the state of the industry and lack of attention paid to the exceptional movies than you do actually going to the movies. And so why blog about anything if the very thing you centered a blog around is a constant disappointment? But my dissatisfaction with movies only mask a larger problem for me.

Cinema is not everything to me anymore.

This is a strange sentence for me to write and an even stranger realization to reach. For starters, I never thought I would write it. It also isn’t entirely true. Right now, I’m watching Sweet Smell of Success, a film I love with every fiber of my being. There is no way I could stop loving this movie or any movie no matter how disappointed I am with the movies I see.

I spent most of this year consciously removing media from my life and reading far more Joan Didion than necessary. Yet, ironically, I spend most days binge-watching everything and anything I could get my hands on. (Did I really need to rewatch Private Practice? No. But I did.) The harder I remove what I do truly love from my life, the more I depend on it in my life.

So this is where my head is at. If any of this makes sense.

Still the blog continues.

Happy New Year.

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