Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Greeting 2010, and the Binder Challenge

Yeah so, um, I've been away from this site for a while.

I could list off a hundred different reasons, but the biggest was the constant indecision as to where to spend the majority of my time - over at my personal blog or here. In the end I kind of chose neither, and the last few months have been quite nice, as I shrugged off the self-imposed responsibility of writing and focused on the holidays, my family, my (new) job, and just reading and watching for the sheer joy of doing it, as opposed to having to don the "critical cap" every time I sat down to see something, not to mention the hassle of always carrying a notebook to theaters or pausing a DVD to jot down one thought or another.

I HAVE seen a bunch of films new and old, and even more, have collected a bunch of films new and old. This poses somewhat of a problem for me.

I know: "No shit, Dr. Jones," those of you that know me are mouthing to your monitors right now. "You have a lot of problems. That's why we tend to stay at least 50 yards away from you and carry pepper spray."

Ha ha...thanks. Now stop talking to your monitors and let's get back to the one I'm talking about.

I've talked before about the slowly growing pile of unwatched DVDs I have at the house. Despite being near a library, despite access to thousands of films online and a Netflix subscription since 2001, I can't help the impulse to actually go to a store and buy a film. New movies, old movies...a double-dip or two when a Special or Limited edition comes's an addiction. And it's only gotten worse since I got a Blu-Ray player over Christmas. To save space I started buying thick leather binders and getting rid of all the plastic, space-wasting cases.

Unfortunately now I have a massive pile of thick leather binders taking up even more space than the plastic cases were.

I've got to do something about it. I've been thinking a lot about the lack of writing on the site, and about the fact that I'm wasting more money that I should feel comfortable with, especially when most of it's going to something that just sits there like a lump, unwatched and unloved. So I'm setting myself a challenge that should take care of my spending, my lack of content here on Celluloid Moon, and that ominous stack of binders glowering at me in the corner of our den. Thus is born the Binder Challenge:
  1. Starting today, I will go through each binder and watch every unwatched film in the order they appear in the binder (the binders have zero order or structure to them).
  2. After watching each film, I'll do some kind of write-up on Celluloid Moon (or Geek Monkey, but I'll cross-post if that's the case). More often than not this will take the form of a review, except when it doesn't.
  3. When I'm finished with a one binder I'll move on to the next one (*duh*)
Pretty simple, right? Here are the two conditions:
  1. Every single film needs a write-up; I can't watch another movie until I've written up the one I've just watched.
  2. I cannot purchase another film until all the films in the binders have been watched.
There. Nice, structured...I'll force myself to save money, see a lot of films that have been neglected for far too long, and I'll be writing a lot more on the site. It occurs to me that if these are my biggest problems, life must be pretty good. And it is. I don't mean to belittle all the other things that are going on, both in the world at large and in my own personal existence. But my hope (glancing as it may be) is that doing something like this will allow me to express some things that have been, for whatever reason, reluctant to come out. Movies - perhaps even more than books - have always been a defining force in my life, and this might provide some sort of outlet for what I want to express.

If nothing else, you'll get a nice look at the type of movies that interest me. So here's to the start of a new journey, one that will echo other paths I'm taking in my life. Hope you hang in there with me and comment, share, predict, agree, argue...whatever your fancy.


  1. I have the same problem. My DVD collection is hoving around the 1,000 mark and every time I want to go watch one of them I convince myself that I have to get through whatever is ondemand or whatever I have recorded off TV first. Then I got into my room (and I could never bring myself to putting my movies in binders so the space issue is huge) and look at this massive collection and am depressed by how many movies are threr that still need to be viewed for the first time. I look forward to seeing how you get through yours, it sounds like a very good cause.

  2. I'm going to guess ours is a common problem among film nerds (of which I proudly include myself)! Once I got over the initial sadness of doing away with the plastic overs it became easier (it also helps to have a 2 yr old who tears into everything in sight), although I still have hundreds of box sets, Criterion Films, and odds and ends that don't lend themselves to "binding" sitting around the shelves.