I’ve been making lists and watching movies for as long as I can remember and can’t imagine stopping anytime soon. When I was a little kid growing up in the suburbs, my older brother worked at a Blockbuster three blocks away from our house. By my freshman year of high school, he was a pharmacist and I was getting my DVDs mailed to me in red envelopes from this new company called Netflix, slowly working through my queue of the AFI top 100 and IMDB top 250. Sometimes on the weekends, I’d blind-buy a cheap, older movie from Circuit City in Valley Stream before going to the movie theater across the street, Green Acres Cinema, to see the newest release. Over 10 years later, both of these places are permanently closed and my brother is a lawyer. Netflix streaming and video on demand, combined with a MoviePass subscription, cover any and every opportunity to watch new and old movies I could dream of.
Recently, I seem to spend more time reading lists than writing them, so I decided to take a break from the former to focus on the latter.
I know some people frown upon lists on Medium, but it’s simply the best place to write, so I’m going to go ahead and do it here anyway. The Rotten Tomatoes forums aren’t what they used to be.
With some serious thought and the help of IMDB + GIPHY, I've composed a modern, updated list of my top 25 movies of all time.
These ratings have fluctuated over the years, with new movies coming into the mix and existing favorites moving up and down in the ranks, but at this moment, they feel right. Take it for what you will, make some time to see what you haven’t already, and share your own top 5, 10, 25, or whatever when you’re done reading…and don’t feel bad about any of it! The Count of Monte Cristo was my favorite movie of all time at one point in my life, but that was a long time ago in a galaxy far, far, away.
1. Big Fish
Memorable quote: “A man tells his stories so many times that he becomes the stories. They live on after him, and in that way he becomes immortal.”
Message: Everybody has daddy issues. What makes you think yours are any worse than somebody else’s? Also, sometimes your dad’s a fish.
2. The Shawshank Redemption
Memorable quote: “Let me tell you something, my friend. Hope is a dangerous thing. Hope can drive a man insane.”
Message: Don’t have hope in anything — except our justice system, because clearly it works.
3. Life of Pi
Memorable quote: “If it happened, it happened. Why should it have to mean anything?”
Message: Sometimes, you need to live a lie to be happy.
4. Pay It Forward
Memorable quote: “I think some people are too scared, or something. I guess it’s hard for people who are so used to things the way they are — even if they’re bad — to change. ‘Cause they kind of give up. And when they do, everybody kind of loses.”
Message: If you ever try to change the world, you WILL get stabbed.
5. Forrest Gump
Memorable quote: “You have to do the best with what God gave you.”
Message: If you have sex with anyone from Alabama, you WILL get HIV and have a kid who sees ghosts. Also, sometimes that weird kid in your class grows up to do amazing things.
6. Slumdog Millionaire
Memorable quote: [the part when they all dance at the end]
Message: Every experience is meaningful in its own way. Also, dancing is fun.
7. Schindler’s List
Memorable quote: “Power is when we have every justification to kill, and we don’t.”
Message: Liam Neeson saved just as many people as he killed in those Taken movies. And you should always make lists so you don’t forget stuff. (I’ve never seen the whole movie.)
8. Field of Dreams
Memorable quote: “If you build it, he will come.”
Message: Commit to something and follow through with it.
9. 8 Mile
Memorable quote: “Do you ever wonder at what point you just got to say ‘fuck it,’ man? Like when you gotta stop living up *here*, and start living down *here*?”
Message: It’s just nice to see a Caucasian from a poor area succeed and go on to make as much money as his African American counterpart for once.
10. The Rookie
Memorable quote: “If you don’t have dreams, you don’t have anything.”
Message: You’re never too old to pursue a dream.
Surfing For 2021 Trends In Tech, Home, Fashion, And Food
It’s never easy to figure out what will happen in a new year, but according to what Google’s incognito mode says to me when I search “trends for 2021,” I need to care about tech trends, home decor trends, fashion trends, and food trends to start.
Since Google seems to know everything, I took that initial prompt to lightly dive into these four areas that are of interest to me. I hope they’re of interest to you, and do keep in mind that I’ve editorialized what I’ve read online — so I may have gotten the trend wrong.