When it comes to bucket lists, pretty much anything goes. The list I made years ago, and continuously update, contains the usual things like skydiving and a list of countries I want to visit, but also contains something that might not be found on your average bucket list. This particular item isn’t a place I want to visit or a skill I’d like to learn, but is a list I’ve been wanting to conquer for years. After all the travel I was lucky enough to do last year, I decided to spend 2014 accomplishing something a little less heavy on the bank account, and a little more suited to building said back account back up.
I decided to watch all the movies on the A.F.I.’s 100 Movies… 100 Years list, and have finally completed the task. Now for those of you who don’t know, A.F.I. stands for the American Film Institute and every 10 years or so a bunch of film experts put together a list of the best films based on a list of nominees they receive. The institute’s goal is to preserve films for future generations, educate future storytellers at their conservatory, as well as honor the masters of the past.
So you know… they’re kind of a big deal… and since these experts probably know what they’re doing when it comes to ranking the top 100 movies from the past 100 years, I figured there was no better list for a movie lover such as myself to conquer. Being the overachiever that I am, not only did I watch every movie on the 2007 version, I also watched all the movies on the 1997 version as well.
When I decided to tackle both lists at the beginning of the year, I gave myself until Dec. 31 to complete the task. If I’m being honest with all of you, I probably could have done it in a lot less time. Simply put, I love movies. They’re pretty much tied with travel for my favorite thing. My TV is usually set to TCM, and my IMDB list is constantly changing, but I knew that because of those two things there was no way I was going to be in the mood to only watch the movies on the list, and decided a year was more than enough time to accomplish this task.
Speaking of time, if you do the math (which I did), all-in-all I watched 123 films which consisted of 15,590 minutes of film that breaks down to roughly 10 days 19 hours of my life…. spent watching movies… Now I’m sure there were probably a lot of other things I could have been doing with my time, but accomplishing a goal – no matter what it is – means a hell of a lot more than all the possibilities you can think up. Besides, it’s not like I watched all 123 movies in the span of 365 days. More than a few of the movies on the list I had already seen (some being among my personal favorites), which meant I was able to cross a good chunk of the list off before I even began.
As for the remaining movies, I won’t share my opinions on them (because this is not a film review), but will go so far as to tell you that some were painful to sit through and took me days to finish, others were films I might not have watched otherwise, but thoroughly enjoyed, and that overall I wouldn’t trade the experience of those 10 days and 19 hours for anything else.