What Film Means to Me

Hello my name is Peter, I am a student at Cleveland Early College High School as a freshman and I live in Shelby, North Carolina. I am Vietnamese-American so when I was growing up my parents showed me a lot of Vietnamese films, I don’t think that this affected me much filmwise but I do see the differences in those movies and movies here in America. I would say my family has had a large effect on me movie-wise, because back when I was around nine or ten we would always go to the redbox in Walmart on Fridays and watch a movie. I don’t remember the first movie I ever watched but I know I have been watching movies since I was very young. My earliest recollection of a movie was a Mr. Bean movie. My favorite movies genres include action, comedy, and mystery.

Vietnam Halong Bay

My favorite movies genres include action, comedy, and mystery/thriller. My favorite movies fall in these categories such as “Get Smart” , The John Wick series, and The Anchorman Series. My favorite actors are usually the comedic ones such as Steve Carell, Will Ferrell, and Rowan Atkinson. I don’t know a lot of directors but one that I do know is Edgar Wright, and I love the movies he directs like “Hot Fuzz” and “Shaun of the Dead”.

Edgar Wright
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There are some genres I don’t like as well, such as romance and horror. I especially don’t like horror, I hate being scared and if I watch a horror movie (or even video) it gets stuck in my head for multiple days. The first horror I can recall watching was with my brother and cousins during a sleepover and it was 11/11/11(the Keith Allen film). I was seven at the time and that movie kept me up the rest of the night, I also was scared too to go to the bathroom when it was dark.

Now that time has passed I don’t watch that many movies anymore, at least not with my family, with the advancements of technology and streaming sites like Youtube, I don’t watch as many movies with my family, or any at all. I only watch movies now when I am bored, but there is the occasional get together with everyone in my family, including cousins, and usually we watch a movie. Movies have had a large effect on me when I was younger and helped me make many memories with my family like when we got scared or laughed together. Hopefully in this film class I can learn the elements of a movie that make the memories and notice them when I watch movies.

Post by Peter Tuong on 2/1/2019

50+ Year Old Interview

On this entry I am interviewing my dad, he is 54(at the time of this entry). I will be asking questions and summarizing and translating his words since he doesn’t speak english fluently.

Interviewed: Dat Tuong (English name is Michael) Race: Asian(Vietnamese)                                              Age: 54 Town of Residency: Shelby, NC

What were some of the first films you remember watching in a theatre?

 I watched many films when I was young in Vietnam but not any American films, they were more Russian and German films that were translated for us. I remember the first American movie I ever watched and it was Deep Impact.

What do you remember about those early film experiences (food, type of theatre, friends, family, how you felt when watching a film in a theatre, etc.)?

 I remember some things like the food they were selling(peanuts and small candies), I also remember going with just some of my friends.

Did you watch many films growing up in theatres (or at home)? If so, what films were you drawn to?

 When I was younger I went to the small theater many times, I really liked movies the have the 007 vibe, the action and spy theme.

Did you ever go to Drive-In Movies when you were younger? What do you remember about those?

 I don’t remember having a drive in theater close to where I lived. But when I came to America and had children I did go for a few years but it has been a few years since I last went to one.
(He is talking about the Sunset Drive-In in Shelby)

Do you remember when the event films like “Jaws” and “Star Wars” when they were in theatres?

 I do not remember them that much because again I lived in Vietnam, which didn’t very play, much advertise American movies, even big ones

When HBO, Showtime, VCRs or DVDs were readily available, did that change how you went to see movies? Or which ones you went to see in a theatre?

 I don’t think it changed what type of movies I watched but it did change how I went to watch them, DVDs meant I could rewatch movies even after the first time so the DVDs were better money spent.

Did you ever go rent movies from a video store? If so, how did you decide what to choose to watch with all those choices?

 I never went to a video store like the old Blockbuster but there was is Redbox in Walmart that I went to back around five years ago, I haven’t gone there in a while and I’m not sure its still there. If I saw a cover that I liked I took it home and watched it.

Image result for redbox

How and where do you watch most of your movies now (theatres, DVDs, streaming, etc)?

 Now because of things like Netflix and Youtube I watch most things at home like my shows and movies.

What kinds of films do you watch now? Do you feel those tastes have changed much in the past 20 years?

 I usually like to watch horror, action, and comedy movies, I have always liked them, I still like to watch those movies types so I don’t think my favorites have changed.

How often do you go to theatres now to see films? How different is it now than when you first  you experienced films films in theaters (sizes of theaters, food choices, movie choice options, etc)? What do you attribute the changes to (if there is one)?

 I don’t go to the movies in theaters very often any more, mainly because I am very busy. From the last time I went I could say that there have been some changes such as how it is more technological and advance. I also have seen increase in games and food.

What’s the last film you watched in a movie theatre? Did you enjoy the experience?

 It has been a while since the last time, all I remember is that it was a new Star Wars movie (He is referring to Star Wars VII). I didn’t hate the experience but it wasn’t amazing so I would say it was so-so.

Peter Tuong 2/17/19

What Film Baggage Means to Me and Why

This week I learned what film baggage was, it is when you start making judgments, reviews, and expectations based on the past movies, ideas, or any influence you have experienced. Film baggage can be positive or negative towards a new film or show but it is never good to have if you are a film watcher or reviewer. It can blind you in seeing positives or seeing negatives, it is always important to be unbiased while seeing a new film and it is hard to do with film baggage. Your film baggage can collect over the years of watching movies if not controlled, we can’t completely destroy or throw away film baggage because we will always have our own opinions but it can be suppressed.

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Baggage can be collected over the years of movie watching

An example of film baggage could be with me, I think that most kids cartoons now are lower in quality compared to older kids cartoons, I think this because of the few shows I have seen that are for kids now. That’s why whenever I see a new kids show coming out or starting I am skeptical of watching it. My favorite kids show is Tom and Jerry(both the 1980s and the late 2000s Tom and Jerry) because of my love for Tom and Jerry I have always liked other shows that had the same style, this goes for my disliking of more modern shows, if they seem to have the same character models or theme I automatically start to judge.

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One of my favorite kids shows
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One of my least favorite kids shows

To start I have some negative film baggage such as my thoughts on different genres such as romance, drama, and horror. I personally don’t like horror because I can’t handle jump scares and I like to think about movies for days after I watch them, so I have never liked horror. Even if the movie has an amazing plot and actors I will still not like it because of the scare factor, this can blind me in seeing the things that I would acknowledge in a regular movie. I also have more positive film baggage, I love other genres such as action or comedy but this can affect my film watching too, for example the Transformers series, I knew that there would be amazing CGI in the sequels so that is what I focused on, I only noticed the negatives after a few times of watching the sequels.

I’m not sure how to completely zip up your film baggage and don’t let it influence you but I can think of some ways. One would be to practice being open minded to new ideas and experiences, you can do this by avoiding other people’s opinions so you don’t get influenced and stay close to unbiased sites when reviewing movies or other things. Hopefully in this class I can get away from my film baggage and learn to see everything in a movie both the positives and the negatives

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Peter Tuong 2/8/19