What *is* a movie?

Derek Armstrong

Derek is a film critic, currently writing for the Australian film website ReelGood as well as his personal blog, The Audient.

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3 Responses

  1. johnmason says:

    Nice blog.

    Here’s my take on it: If you don’t want to rank it, you don’t have to. (Which is, of course, exactly what you’re doing.)

    Personally, I prefer to rank everything that’s on Flickchart that I have, in fact, seen. This includes movies that I really don’t remember well (beyond an impression of whether I liked it or not), and all those Christmas specials, like Rudolph and the Grinch. I’ve actually often debated removing those Christmas specials from my list, but I hate the idea of not ranking something I have seen.

    Some of those movies I can’t remember well have been left off, because I think I may see them again. (The first two Christopher Reeve Superman movies are good examples; I actually have them in my DVD collection, but haven’t seen them in over a decade.) Yet, I’m ranking E.T., even though it’s been almost as long since I’ve seen it. And I’ve also finally decided to start ranking Pulp Fiction, since after Inglourious Basterds, I’ve decided I just don’t get Tarantino, and my odds of going back to PF are negligible.

    I’ve often thought I might like to rank short films, too. Particularly the fantastic shorts that Pixar puts out. They all debut in the theaters, even though they only average 6-7 minutes in length. But, I also understand why the guys at Flickchart don’t put those up for ranking.

    Captain EO (that 16-minute Michael Jackson 3-D music video directed by Francis Ford Coppola) was up for debate on Flickchart’s Tweetboard a while ago. Come to think of it, I think I submitted it myself. Shoot, it was on IMDb….

    Nathan explained to me once in an e-mail that they’ve decided that, in general, if you can obtain something in its own DVD release, it should probably be fair game. I think that’s a pretty fair criteria.

    It’s a fine line, but what’s great about it is that a user’s own Flickchart is entirely up to them; you don’t want to rank it, don’t, and your Flickchart will be exactly the way you want it.

  2. johnmason says:

    Oh, and here’s one more thought:

    Perhaps the definition of a “flick” is somewhat broader than that of a “movie”…

  3. Nathan Chase says:

    For those curious, our unofficial criteria (as of this moment) for inclusions has been:

    1) to include titles that premiered in theaters, on video, or was a made-for-tv movie

    2) is available (or has been offered) autonomously (meaning not part of a “season” or “collection”, but stands alone)

    and 3) There’s readily available poster art, box art, or some other unique visual promotional representation to that title

    Captain EO was definitely an odd one in that it’s never been in theaters or on video (only shown inside Disney theme parks), is very short, yet was directed by Francis Ford Coppola. It’s certainly an unusual “film” to judge.