What film do you wish you could go back and watch again for the very first time?
Courtney: The Little Foxes. For me this film defines great acting. The story is not only insightful about what drives each of us but draws great comparisons for each of the characters relationships about their decisions. Bette Davis owns the screen and communicates so much thought and emotion with her reacting to what's going on around her. She is forceful and driven and even though heartless in some points she still makes you care.
Dan: I have to go with The Usual Suspects on this one. It was one of the greatest rides of all time, seeing that film. The performances of Kevin Spacey, Chazz Palminteri, Gabriel Byrne, Kevin Pollack, and a young Benicio Del Toro all lead up to one of the greatest reveals ever in a movie! Watching this film was amazing the first time, wondering the whole time who Keyser Söze really was, if he was even real … oh so good! The film is still great to watch, and it was fun to go back and see it a couple more times just to see the subtly used to show you who it was and yet mislead you at the same time. But nothing compares to the first time seeing it, when you finally get the pay off, and Spacey’s last line as it goes to credits. I wish I could rewatch this film for the first time over and over. McQuarrie’s story/script with Singer’s excellent execution on the screen … definitely my pick.
Taylor: Jurassic Park. I had never seen a movie like this before and I will never forget the buildup for it. You had to go see Jurassic Park the first weekend and that meant standing in lines outside the movie theater in the summer heat of Phoenix. This movie shaped what I wanted from a summer blockbuster, which is to say very different than all other movies. Big action, Check. CGI like you had never seen before that made me feel like I was at a zoo watching dinosaurs for the very first time, check. Over-the-top acting, check, check and more checks. This is a must for a summer blockbuster and Jurassic Park had it in spades. This is peak Jeff Goldblum and it will never get better than his character Malcolm. The other casting of this movie was top-notch as well. From Sam Neill as the salty paleontologist to Laura Dern showing us how much of a badass she was and still is. Even the casting of Richard Attenborough as Hammond, the owner of the park and grandfather to Tim and Lex was perfect. Let's not forget how great Wayne Knight's shifty, up-to-no-good slob of a character was. He was the catalyst of it all, his greed sets into motion everything that goes wrong. Last but not least, Samuel F'ing Jackson! If you think you are going to have a summer blockbuster and not have Samuel L. Jackson in it, you are wrong. The way this man smoked a cigarette made me want to go buy a pack of Camels at the age of 10. To love all these characters in one movie is an amazing feat and it speaks to the writing and directing of this film. Michael Crichton and Steven Spielberg were a fantastic duo and I hope they team up again one day. This all leads me to why I loved this movie so much, it was an event. Movies in this day and age rarely seem this way for me and I will always miss it. That is why if there is one movie I could go back and see for the first time it would be Jurassic Park.
Stephen: For me it was a coin flip between two movies I saw as a kid but if I could watch only one movie again for the first time it would have to be E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. I was very young and remember being completely captivated by what I was watching in that theatre. I was a hyper child but when my mom took me to see this film, I was glued to my seat. I couldn’t take my eyes off the screen. I was in hysterics when E.T. was disguised in the dress, wig and hat. I was in tears when E.T. had been captured and was close to death. I cheered and clapped my hands loudly when E.T. was saved. And when Elliot’s bike flew into the air, silhouetted against the moon with E.T. in the basket, my young mind was blown. It was so much fun and I begged my mom to take me to see it again and again. It had such an impact on me that my favorite toy was a talking E.T. doll which I took everywhere, my favorite game was E.T. for the Atari 2600 (universally thought of as the worst video game ever made but I loved it) and I ate Reese’s Pieces by the handfuls. It is one of the first, if not the first film I ever saw that sparked my love for movies. Plus it was directed by a guy named Steven which I thought was the coolest thing ever! It is one of the films that to this day I think about when I sit down to write and use for inspiration. I want to take people on a ride like that! Melissa Mathison’s script had everything that makes a great movie and Steven Spielberg captured it beautifully on film.
Emily: I saw My Big Fat Greek Wedding with friends and we quoted it back to each other for years. Unfortunately this is one of those comedies where the humor fades more with every viewing. Maybe it’s because many jokes are based on shock value and recalls (e.g.: the continual surprise of the all-purposeful Windex), rather than having ultimate staying power. I’d love to be able to rewatch it without remembering the jokes and enjoy the light-hearted humor all over again.
Sarah: The Tree of Life. It was one of the most rare and oddly existential experiences I've ever had watching a film. Stunning cinematography, laced with deep and philosophical metaphors. At the end of it, I was left stewing in my own mishegas and it was absolutely brilliant. A certain type of vulnerability I can't really explain. When I decided to watch it again I was sorely disappointed because I wasn't able to focus wholly like I did the first time around; partially in part to a rowdy audience who didn't "get it."
Share the film you wish you could go back and see again for the first time in the comments below.