Tuesday, January 1, 2013

And In The Beginning, The End...

Today brings an end to 2012 and to the 2012 screening diary I called Pause. Rewind. Obsess.

This idea I had, one year ago today -- to write about every film I saw this year -- was spontaneous but its demands turned out to be more rigorous than I initially considered. It seems I can't do anything by half-measures, and my original intention to write notes or comments was overruled by, in most cases, full-length reviews. In essence, this blog turned into a book I wrote on the side.

There are other books I would rather write, for fun and profit, so I won't be continuing with another screening diary for 2013. That said, I am very pleased that I was able to keep and fulfill this promise to myself and I consider this blog a complete, if gratuitous, success.

I usually fell a bit behind schedule in my reviewing -- in the home stretch, approximately 30+ movies behind schedule, which meant I was basically chained to my desk over the last few days, hammering out up to 16  reviews per day to meet my self-assigned December 31 deadline.

I undertook this project in the first place because I was curious to see how many feature films I saw in the average year. And now I know: DJANGO UNCHAINED, the last film I saw in 2012, was # 224. (On January 2, I remembered two other titles I'd forgotten to include/review and added them as postscripts, bringing the full count up to 226.) That's considerably fewer than one per day, but this was not an average year of film viewing for me. I spent a lot of additional time engrossed in series television, which was not represented here. My television viewings included:

BREAKING BAD: All five seasons, viewed at least thrice, sometimes with audio commentaries;

THE TWILIGHT ZONE: The first three seasons on Blu-ray, many viewed a second time with commentaries;

THE LARRY SANDERS SHOW: A long overdue, complete re-viewing of the entire series on Netflix.

LIE TO ME: Again Netflix, all three seasons.

ONCE AND AGAIN: All three seasons of this overlooked series from the producers of THIRTYSOMETHING, viewed via DVD-Rs obtained through IOffer;

MAD MEN: Probably my fifth overall viewing of the entire series;

Miscellaneous episodes of ROUTE 66, THE HUNGER, PERRY MASON, MAN WITH A CAMERA, and God knows what else;

THE STORY OF FILM: AN ODYSSEY: Mark Cousins' engrossing and uniquely encompassing 15-episode survey of world cinema from its beginnings through the 21st century; and, last but anything but least...

more than 500 episodes of DARK SHADOWS, which I began viewing with Episode 210 on Netflix last January. I'm now well into the 700s with my coffin-shaped Complete Series box set.

Another reason I'm choosing not to continue diarizing my movie viewing: As this project went on, and as I sometimes fell behind in keeping it contemporary with my viewing, its responsibility sometimes prevented me from adding more to the pile by watching another movie. It probably encouraged me to read more than I've done in awhile, as did the acquisition of my Kindle, but who wants to feel discouraged from watching movies because you have to write about them? There is something to be said for the discipline, for keeping one's reviewing muscle taut, but I much prefer writing about movies because I want to.

Anyway, as my productivity here shows, it was helpful and healthful to me to break away from Video WatchBlog to some extent and create something new.  I intend to keep the Pause. Rewind. Obsess. title and will likely apply it to something else, something new.

Happy New Year! 


  1. Thank you Tim. Your blog was an absolute pleasure to read.

  2. What a ride! Congratulations and thanks. I look forward to revisiting your reviews as I catch up on the films here I've yet to see.

  3. It was a wonderful experiment and a great read! It also gave me a number of films that I need to check out (and some films to consider avoiding).

  4. I understand your choice, but I'm sure gonna miss this blog.