This story is a little weird, but it’s not so bad.
Ramble of the Day
My real introduction to the world of entertainment outside of that made for children came through an episode of The Suite Life of Zack & Cody that I watched when I was 10. Zack and Cody’s mom, Carey, once name-dropped George Clooney, calling him dreamy, and for whatever reason, I assumed he was a politician. When I asked my older sister, she told me he was an actor. I asked what he was famous for. She gave me the short version: he started off on a show called ER, and got really famous making a movie called Ocean’s Eleven.
I was curious, so watched ER and I watched Ocean’s Eleven. After watching the second, I had decided that Matt Damon was a good actor, and was also my favorite actor. I then proceeded to watch whatever Matt Damon movie was available to me, regardless of whether or not I was old enough to understand it properly. I became quite the fan of the Bourne movies (pre-Jason Bourne) and enjoyed most of the offerings. Then I watched We Bought a Zoo.
I was probably a little bit too old to watch this movie when I did, but in my defense, a good movie for children is also enjoyable for adults and/or teenagers. (It could be argued that in general, films that appeal to only certain demographics should be enjoyable on some level to all.) Anyway, We Bought a Zoo is a boring movie about something that for some reason happened and randomly, Scarlett Johansson’s in it. It’s really an unremarkable film, but I think it was the first time I was mad I had wasted my time watching a movie — and I had watched it from the comfort of my own couch.
It was the end of my deep interest in Damon’s career, but I was hurt after years of dedication. Most of Damon’s movies that I had seen up to that point had not been utter trash, though as I learned later, he had made some pretty bad movies before We Bought a Zoo. It was also the beginning of the end in my approach to watching movies; I did not blindly watch anything certain actors made anymore. Sometimes, good actors make surprisingly bad movies. It happens, and it’s best that I start looking at movies as movies, and less so as vehicles for me to watch certain actors.
I’m not actually planning on saying that everyone should watch movies and judge them by the same categories; enjoy your entertainment as you please. I don’t think I realized until I rambled, though, that We Bought a Zoo inherently changed the way I watch movies and television, and for that, I’m grateful because I’m very happy to enjoy them the way I do. (For what it’s worth, it involves really watching a film for all of the filmmaking involved and with a careful eye.)
I do, though, still think it’s a forgettably trash film.
tl;dr: How one bad Matt Damon movie changed the way I watched movies.
Links of the Day
Czech forward Josef Šural has died aged 28 following a bus accident in Alanya, Turkey.
Two people have been arrested in England after an unauthorized image of Emiliano Sala’s body circulated the internet.
Today’s longer read: Marina Hyde on English football’s studio analysts and the elastic concept of respect for The Guardian