What is this project?

An undertaking as long and involved as this needs a bit of an explanation, I would imagine.

What is this project?
I'm planning on watching every movie out of Roger Ebert's Great Movie books. I am hopefully going to be able to watch one every day until I am finished. Some of the films are very hard to find, but I am working on tracking all of them down. There might be times when the mail messes up and I don't get a DVD delivered, or times when there are complications, but I will cut myself some slack for things like that. I'll do everything in my power to get and watch the movie, but I do accept that I might have to make some allowances for things out of my control. I'm going to be using books I-III, and watching the films in order, from the first film listed in The Great Movies  to the last in Great Movies III.

Why are you doing this?
For fun! I really respect and admire Roger Ebert and his eloquent writings on film. I hope that I can gain new insights by reading his essays along with the films. There are more than a few of these films that I have watched before, but I'm interested in thinking about them again and re-visiting them in a new light. I'm doing this because I love to watch movies, write (and write about) movies, and learn about movies. There are tons of movies on this list that I have shamefully never seen, and many more that I have intended to. Of course, they get lost in the Netflix queue I make, or start to serve as decorations on my coffee table. "Hmm...to watch The White Ribbon or another No Reservations?" usually ends in Bourdain snarking at me from the television. I want to watch all of these films anyway - I might as well do it during all of my unemployed free time and have a bit of a challenge as well.

I'm not doing this because I think that Ebert's books are some sort of definitive "top movies" list. They are movies that he likes and provoke strong emotional reactions in him, but it is not a list of the best movies of all time. I'm not doing this because I want to parrot what Ebert thinks or says. Some of these films I have seen already and did not like, and I'll tell you about that. Hopefully I can learn to appreciate some of them, but I'm not afraid to share my stupid opinions. I'm not doing this because I am an expert on film of any sort! I'm just a passionate girl who has a screenwriting minor and likes to think too much about what she watches. It doesn't make my opinion right or wrong - I'm doing this to just keep a log of my thoughts of all of these films, and my experience of watching a film every single day, and finding them! I'm not really doing this to "review" classic films, just to have a place to write down my thoughts about this wide selection of movies. The second movie I am going to watch is The 400 Blows, which I have seen for a class every year for the last three years - I'm curious what I will think of it now that I'm watching it for a different reason, in a different way, and having a blog is a great way for me to work out my thoughts quickly and have a record of this goofy project. :)

When are you doing this?
I'm going to start on Monday, December 20th, if everything goes as planned. Today I'm going to finally watch the Netflix films that I have that are taking up space, and send them back, so hopefully I can amass the first few films I have to watch before the weekend. The only break in the calender for me is the fourth week of August, when I am taking a road trip to Colorado. I'll be staying in a cabin that was built in the 1800's at about 10,000 feet above sea level, where there is no TV, internet, or cell phone signals, and I really, as much as I would like to, can't be posting blogs and watching movies in those conditions.

Who are you, by the way?
A good question. I'm Amanda, but please call me Mandy. I get uncomfortable around too many syllables. I graduated from DePaul University last June with a major in English and a minor in screenwriting. My film classes, be them in production and lighting or writing, were my favorite classes to take and I always looked forward to them, even the ones late at night. I spend most of my time playing video games, watching movies, reading, or writing. I love going to the movies in the winter when everything good comes out, which I will still be doing while working on this project. Other than that, I love hiking and camping, road trips, and working on my skills in amateur photography. I do watch TeeVee, also. Some shows I've adored lately are True Blood, Boardwalk Empire, Breaking Bad, Mad Men, Dexter, Conan, The Walking Dead, and of course my favorites, Hoarders and Intervention.
Other fun facts: All of the movies that first started my obsession with film are not in any of these three books, so right there you can tell I'm no expert. :)
I like 80's music, and current pop music, and...metal.
The first full-length screenplay I ever wrote was a Western. I hate Westerns.
I have a tiny toy poodle who demands much of my attention every day, her name is Nikita.
Nothing makes me happier than a glass of scotch and a movie with James Spader.
I guess that's me! It's harder than I thought to explain yourself to the internet.

2001: A Space Odyssey