Five Things I Like About Today (Right Now)

Hello world. As you may know, I am in the middle of a blogging marathon. Or maybe you don’t. In that case you should read some of the posts. They’re quite good but I also know the author so I wouldn’t take my opinion too seriously. Anyways, watching and blogging about 24 movies before my birthday hasn’t gone according to plan thanks to a bitch named Irene.  I still have eight movies to write about and today is my actual day of birth. But c’est la vie.

So in honor of me turning the very old age of 23 – Yes, 23 is old. I’m almost in my mid-twenties, which is almost 30, which is old. I know this because Jessica Simpson told me so on an episode of Newlyweds – these are five things I am enjoying today.

1. This clip from (500) Days of Summer that my friend Ally keeps posting on every form of social media we interact on.

2. This picture of Katharine Hepburn.

3. These two Kate Nash songs.


4. Ferris Wheels. I always end up riding a ferris wheel around my birthday. It will happen again this week. (No, it won’t be this ferris wheel.)

5. This version of “Ta ra ta ta” that I almost start dancing to on NJ Transit and then I remember that I’m on the subway


Okay, that is enough of this self-promotional blog post.

If I haven’t said it enough, thanks for reading my blog and thanks for coming back if you do. Now go enjoy your day. And maybe watch a Katharine Hepburn movie, ride a ferris wheel and eat a damn good cannoli.


Well, Happy Blog-a-versary To Me

I forgot that today is the sixth anniversary of my blog. (Typical.)

If you have just started reading For Cinephiles by a Cinefille, here is my very first slightly mortifying post. Okay, it isn’t that bad. I just cringe reading it; I always will. I’ve changed a lot since I was 16, when I would furiously type away about my love for TCM and Katharine Hepburn while sitting at my parents desktop computer. Well, I’ve really only moved from that computer to the couch a few feet away. Except now now furiously type away on my laptop.

I feel like I should do something to celebrate this momentous occasion in my blogging life. Maybe I should watch Bringing Up Baby?

Nah. I watched The White Sister with Lillian Gish this morning, so I definitely got my classic movies kick out earlier. Though as I type this post I am watching the end of The Prisoner of Zenda before A Tale of Two Cities followed by Random Harvest start on TCM. Who am I kidding? I can never get enough TCM.

This post is probably a good time to announce that I am branching out a bit. Starting tomorrow, my friend Ally and I are entering the realm of pop culture podcasters. Why produce a pop culture podcast when there are so many other podcasts out there? Because none of those people are myself and Ally; we like to think that our blend of pop culture fawning, Alexander McQueen ogling, TCM fangirling, Degrassi loving, celebrity bashing, and snark (lots of snark) is unique to the podcasting world. We recorded the first podcast on Tuesday and will have it posted tomorrow. Be sure to follow our podcasting adventures on Tumblr and Twitter.

As for this blog, I will keep doing what I do: writing about movies. I am currently working on my birthday blitz movie marathon. Slowly. Very slowly. I am making my way through the 24 movies I intend to start blogging about on August 22.

You can follow me on Twitter and you can like For Cinephiles by a Cinefille on Facebook. Or do both! Please do both! But if you have to choose one, go with Facebook. All of my Twitter followers are making me egotistical.

In the meantime, thanks for reading whether you just started or have been for years. Even if you are my sister who totally denied the other day that she used to comment on my posts before anyone else would.

(P.S. I settled on watching Jersey Shore tonight. Because deep down I am a terrible person who is completely fascinated by these buffoons. Sorry Ronald Colman.)

What To Watch? Your Suggestions Wanted

Now that I am done with the 30 Day Film Challenge – and thank goodness because I was terribly bored with it by day 25 – I want to do something different.

Back in the day, I used to be incredibly diligent when it came to watching movies. I would watch something like 15 movies a weekend in high school. (Proof that TCM keeps kids from doing dumb stuff.) I had a ridiculously fast Netflix turn around; I would rent and watch as many as five movies any given week. I had movie watching down to a science. Since then, my over eager teenage self who wanted to watch every movie ever made has died. Now I’ve just gotten lazy in my post-college days. I’ve had one Netflix rental out since April. Since I seem to be endlessly bored and incapable of watching any new-to-me movies unless they are in theaters, I need to challenge myself.

So here’s my idea.

Continue reading “What To Watch? Your Suggestions Wanted”

Listen Up: On the Matineecast

Head over to The Dark of the Matinee and listen to the latest Matineecast. I am a guest on the podcast with Blake from Bitchin Film Reviews. Take a listen as we discuss Green Lantern, Super 8, and kid protagonist films.(I should also apologize in advance for my crappy microphone and my feverish state – I don’t even want to know how out of it I probably sound.)

You can also listen here or on iTunes.


What’s in a name? Some thoughts on my online persona

Some shenanigans went down on YouTube last night. I’ll get to that in a minute.

When I was 16, I started a blog. This blog. Except back then it was on blogger, I didn’t know anything about HTML, and I thought I knew everything about film. Everything. Some of the posts from back then are cringe-worthy. They filled with these statements that only emphasize how naive I was back then about a lot of things, especially film.

Then I thought the username I created, cinefille, was pretty brilliant. It is a play on words for “cinephile” (movie lover, which I am) using the French word for girl (which I also am). Cinefille became a mask for me. I could easily hide behind the double meanings of this word, say what I wanted to say, and move on. What I didn’t realize then and I have come to realize now is that when some people see the word “cinefille” they think I am trying too hard and that I saying something about myself that I don’t necessarily mean.

Going to college helped me move past my sometimes very jaded view of the cinema. It helped me move past my “cinefille” identity. The degree program I entered into was rigorous and beyond beneficial to my understanding and appreciation of film. Before college I implemented and hosted a classic film series at my local community center. But suddenly the cinema didn’t just consist of the Hollywood greats I had cultivated a passion for anymore. Instead it encompassed everything and everyone in between and beyond. I developed a passion for experimental filmmaking – Maya Deren, Marjorie Kellor, Kenneth Anger. (One passionate instructor can do that for you.) I discovered Michelangelo Antonioni’s L’Avventura and realized that this is my favorite film. (Sorry Bringing Up Baby.)

I worked on film sets. I attended the Cannes Film Festival in 2009. These experiences opened up the industry to me and really showed me that so much more goes into a film than what you see on screen. (This is something that I had been taught in class, of course, but it is so hard to truly understand the filmmaking process until you see the industry in action.) All of these experiences – my education, my firsthand industry experience – culminated in my senior honors thesis that I have written a bit about on this blog.

Then I graduated from college with a film degree that I am incredibly proud of. I am among the first students to graduate from Mount Holyoke’s film studies program. It may not be a big name undergrad program like USC or NYU but there are amazing things coming out of this program that I feel challenge industry norms.

This has all worked to change how I approach writing about cinema. I think, I hope, that this shows in my blog. Since graduating last May, I have made an effort to write sustainable and original content. I don’t just regurgitate news stories anymore or post a review that focuses solely on performance or character. I try to read each film, write something meaningful about the cinema, and have that conveyed in my writing. I plan on pursuing all this further in graduate school. (One day.)

This brings me to last night’s YouTube debacle. I mentioned earlier in the week that I won a 30-item goodie bag from the Criterion Collection. For me, this is unbelievably exciting. I’m stuck in this awful post-college lull; there is no way I can afford any of the 22 movies I received. I have been handed a great opportunity that I realize has made many people jealous. I was caught up in the excitement of winning this gift bag when my friend Nicole and I decided to make a short vlog of me opening the package. We never intended for it to be taken too seriously.

This is intended as a short, lighthearted, fun video. If only it had stayed that way.

Initially people were receptive to the vlog. Then late last night one someone commented that it was stupid. Things spiraled out of control from there. Commentators called me obnoxious, an ungrateful brat, an ungrateful bitch and ignorant. Oddly, I don’t mind any of those comments. I can see where some of them are coming from. I clearly I didn’t show how appreciative I am for the goodie bag. If you don’t follow my blog and twitter, you would assume I didn’t really care. But it was when these commentators started saying I didn’t deserve to win because I am clearly “just a normal person who sees a movie and only sees a movie” and that I should return the movies. Now, this is where the gloves come off.

The vlog, in some people’s opinion, does not show me earnestly appreciating the Criterion Collection and analyzing each film in depth. Instead I am seen making some pretty stupid jokes. Oh, then there is that Charlie Sheen reference. (How dare Charlie Sheen and the Criterion Collection be put in the same context?) Because of this I know nothing about film. I admit I come across as a bit foolish and not as informed as I really am. It is frustrating that this is only how people saw me. But if there is one thing I am not, it is the ungrateful and uninformed bitch that all of these commentators are making me out to be.

Why are they so amped to attack this video? When I used to post my blog under my cinefille moniker because my online persona masked my insecurities about my lack of film knowledge. These people, who I have never met and really don’t take their criticism too seriously, they are hiding behind their usernames to attack me because they see themselves as better and more knowledgeable than me. My film degree by no means makes me more of an expert about film than anyone else. I just read films differently. It seems to me that I understand this about myself which is why I can make a silly vlog about the Criterion Collection. I just didn’t realize that this silly vlog would generate so much flack. It was a naive presumption but I still don’t regret making or posting the vlog.

For all the good things that come from social media, it has created this black hole in our society. It has given people, what they see as a right, to be unnecessarily rude and mean to complete strangers just because they can. It is really bizarre to think about. But if I didn’t look at it this way, I would probably be more angry about this right now than I am.

Any thoughts on this hoopla is more than welcome. Sound off below.

Continue reading “What’s in a name? Some thoughts on my online persona”