You can tell how I felt about a movie by how quiet I am after watching it.
If I am chatty and laughing, generally I though it was either delightfully bad or unfortunately bad, but in one way or another, it was rather bad. Or maybe it was quite fun, but in no way important.
If I am absolutely catatonic, then the movie touched the inside of my brain in some way, and it was very good. I won't talk about it, I won't make eye contact, I keep my facial expressions to myself.
Today I watched a movie called The Man From Earth, and a movie called Twilight. The latter I chatted light-heartedly about. The former, however...
The point of me bringing this up is when I find a movie so good that I have to crawl inside myself and mull over my feelings, it really... really... REALLY bothers me when others want to talk about it immediately afterwards.
Seriously, am I the only person that realizes that you can ruin rarely gleaned introspective clarity by rehashing with stupid chatter the poignant moments that provided it to you? If you can't express yourself as well as the movie just expressed itself, seriously... just let the movie do the talking. I don't want to hear, "So, what did you think about when blanky blank happened?" I don't want to hear, "Oh, I particularly liked the part where blanky blanky deep thing happened." I REALLY don't want to hear, "What did YOU think of the movie, Krista?"
I actually almost yelled at someone today because they asked me that after the first movie I mentioned above. I wanted to say, "I know how I felt about it, and I'm not sharing it with you, because you should be sitting and thinking about how you felt about it too, instead of trying to talk to me!" What I ended up saying instead was simply, "You know I don't like to talk about good movies." Sigh.
Usually I just keep to myself when I walk out of a movie that puts me inside my brain and everyone I'm with is all chatty about it. Ooh it was so good, ooh we have to rehash it again and again and again, bla, bla, blaaaaa, ruin, ruin, ruin. Why can't you just let it ruminate inside of you, let it affect and change you in little ways, just hold something in and feel it more intensely for a second of your life instead of immediately expelling it again with hollow, shallow, idiot words.
There have really only been a handful of movies that have made me feel this way. I look back on some of them and KNOW in my heart of hearts that some of them were not good movies. But the interesting thing about these movies that get inside of me is that, unlike my personal list of "flawless" movies, which I can watch an infinite number of times and never get tired of, these movies that steal my consciousness I can watch only once. And never again.
I guess I'm afraid of ruining the memories of my strong emotional response. Or maybe I'm just afraid of finding those emotions again. Either way, no. I won't talk about it. And I won't watch it again.
So, if you're ever lucky enough to watch a movie with me and you notice afterwards that I'm really quiet, just... leave me be. Maybe you should take the opportunity to sit yourself down and wonder why it might have affected me so strongly. Maybe you should let it affect you too.
But whatever you do, don't ask me, "What did you think of the movie?"
(Originally posted on November 30th, 2008)