Blogger Q&A: What Are Your Special Flickcharting Rules?

Hannah Keefer

I'm a freelance writer, storytelling enthusiast, and aspiring high school drama teacher. I watch all the movies I can.

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3 Responses

  1. Alex L says:

    Travis’s rules are my favorite ever.

  2. Nick L says:

    1. Theatrically released films only (no TV/direct to video, no documentaries, no stand up comedy specials).

    2. Be conscious of cinematic version of recency effect – it’s difficult often to rank a film you’ve just finished against something you might not have seen in years and can only vaguely recall both in detail and what you felt about it. I loved Sicario having watched it in the theatre last month, yet it’s probably been 20 years since I saw Casablanca, so how to rank them?

    3. In the case of a tie, it can be either “which would I rather watch first if presented with a choice?”, or if that is still not sufficient, “which made the bigger impact on me/cinema”? You can respect films you perhaps didn’t enjoy so much as your guilty pleasures. I can’t make any intellectual or artistic arguments on behalf of, say, Crank High Voltage, but it’s brilliantly tasteless fun, whereas something like Lost Highway I appreciate for its narrative originality, yet at the same time it leaves me somewhat cold.

    4. Be conscious of heard mentality. Christopher Nolan and Peter Jackson are actually quite mediocre it comes to the basic mechanics of filmmaking – story, script, shooting style, editing approach, yet because they have involved themselves with popular properties their films are praised beyond their actual merits as pieces of cinema. Likewise with Quentin Tarantino, I’m not saying I hate all his movies, just that the breathless praise that’s heaped upon them is not commensurate with the quality actually extant – places on end of year top 10 lists are being reserved even before the film is released. So one must ask oneself, did I really enjoy this film and was it well made, or am I just following along with the popular consensus?

    5. The bottom 20 is just as important as the top 20. So many times we humans judge each other on not what we commonly like, but what we commonly hate. For example if I find anyone else with Dancer in the Dark as one of their most hated films, I know already that this is a person of excellent taste.