For me, movies started off as a way to pass the time during the summer as a young kid who stayed at home all day. I enjoyed being outside and playing sports, but that wasn’t allowed with no adults around. I liked playing video games, but only so much. That left rented VHS tapes, recorded movies or whatever was on TV till mom or dad got home so I could go outside, or it was time for practice.
Going to the local movie rental store was a weekly event that was more exciting to me than going to the toy store. I remember being fascinated by all the movie covers especially the ones in the horror section. Anyone else remember watching VHS tapes so much they would start to wear out and show the red, yellow, and blue discolorations on the screen? Howard the Duck, Commando, the Rocky franchise, John Hughes movies, and Rambo 2 just to name a few. Good times.
But back to my point. I just loved movies, but there was a movie or specifically a scene that made the biggest impact on my movie loving little heart. I fell in love with horror the first time I saw Jason Voorhees wrecking fools in Friday the 13th Part 4: The Final Chapter. I always knew it was a guy in a mask and the weapons were props. However, there was a scene in An American Werewolf in London that would change how I would look at movies forever. The transformation scene where David turns into a werewolf for the first time just mesmerized me. I remember inching closer and closer to the TV screen as I witnessed this realistic (in my mind at the time) change from human to beast. “How did they do that?!” There and then is when I started to explore more of the behind the scenes stuff and what made movies tick.
From there movies went from a passing-the-time hobby to a passion of mine. I wanted to watch all kinds of movies, learn about them, explore them, and just enjoy as many as I could. Being the only one in my circle to really enjoy all kinds of movies and wanting to give pretty much any movie I found interesting a chance, I found myself exploring most these movies alone. I would see all the big hits at the theaters with my friends of course, but after a couple of times where I got to pick what we saw, my vote quickly was taken away.
Instead of choosing the hit everyone was talking about in Forrest Gump, I had our group go see Natural Born Killers. They didn’t enjoy Seven, In the Mouth of Madness, Event Horizon and several others. I can’t tell you the crap they would give me when it came to renting movies and my selection widened. So I would end up watching the “popular” movies with my friends and then renting or even going to the theaters by myself to watch my kind of movies. It was awkward to be a teenager in a movie theater by yourself the first couple of times, but after a while, I actually preferred it.
30 years later after watching that scene from An American Werewolf in London, with a few thousand movies under my belt, I have written a couple of screenplays (that will never see the light of day), and I get to write about that passion as a hobby for you guys. Movies have been pretty good to me.