When you think of a film snob, you think of someone who’s wearing one of those suit coats that has those leather patches on the elbows. Maybe someone smoking a pipe, with a beard. Someone who’s going to tell you that the best part of the last movie that he saw was the lighting, or the editing! Well, I’ve never thought of myself as a film snob of any type! The only time you’ll find me in any kind of suit is if a relative is in a box in the room with me. When I did have a beard I looked more like a biker than a professor. And I don’t really smoke pipes, cigars are more my style. So, when my wife called me a film snob, I was truly taken aback!
You see, I was looking for a specific movie, Duel. Now, I was sure that everyone and his mother had heard of the movie Duel! After all, it’s a Steven Speilberg movie! It’s a great movie and I consider it a classic, after all, what’s not to love about Dennis Weaver being stalked by a killer truck driver? Well, I began my quest at the usual places, the Hollywoods and the Communist Block-busters and when I asked for the movie, you would have thought I was speaking a foreign language! I was offered Duel In The Sun, Duel At Diablo, Duel Of Hearts, Death Duel Of Kung Fu and I don’t know how many other movies with Duel in the title. I was completely stunned! How could no one have heard of this great movie? Well, after getting back home, and telling my wife my sad tale of dealing with these idiots who’d never heard of this great movie, I was informed, by her, that I was, in fact, a movie snob!
For minutes, I was shocked beyond words…me! A movie snob!?! Me!?! No way, she had to be wrong! After all, I can’t even be in the same room as one of those pretentious assholes without feeling my skin crawl, so how could I ever be in the same category as one of…THEM? Well, when the shock finally wore off and I could speak again, I started thinking, could it be true? Could I, the guy who proudly bears the title, Bad Movie Guy, be a movie snob? And, after hours, nay days, of reflection, I think my wife may be right. I, your humble Bad Movie Guy, am a movie snob!
First, we have to define what a movie snob is. In my mind, a movie snob is someone who enjoys talking about movies that no one has seen, and on some level I think that we’re all like that. After all, who doesn’t enjoy being the first on your block to be part of anything? I know that I do, I always enjoy telling the story of being one of the first people to see Office Space in the theatres, years before it became the cult hit that it is today! I also like the tale of sitting alone in a local theatre watching the weird movie that no one wanted to see with me, Evil Dead! So, on that level, I guess I am a movie snob.
Movie snobs also enjoy talking about the minutiae of filmmaking, the lighting, the editing, and the cinematography. Now, while I don’t think those aspects of a movies are unimportant, I do feel that if I’m noticing the lighting in any movie, the lighting guy isn’t doing his job. All these things should work together so seamlessly that you never know that they’re there! But, I do enjoy finding early movies by notable filmmakers. Duel by a young Steven Speilberg. Last House On The Left by a young Wes Craven. Dark Star by a young John Carpenter. I think that it’s fun to see where these revered filmmakers started and what those movies looked like. So, does that make me a snob? On some level, I think it does, but I still don’t consider myself a movie snob.
The last way you can tell a movie snob is by the way he talks to you. You all know what I’m talking about, being talked down to by someone who feels that they’re educating you about the movies. I can honestly say that I don’t do this…although, I do enjoy telling people about movies that they may have never seen. And, unlike your run of the mill movie snob, I’m perfectly willing to listen to your opinion and, yes, there have been times when I’ve changed my mind about something!
So, there you have it. Am I a movie snob? On some level I guess I am, but, on some level, aren’t we all? We all enjoy what we enjoy and if we can agree, that’s great. We just have to remember that if we disagree, not to be disagreeable, but to accept that we’re all different. I may like The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and you may like Fried Green Tomatoes, but that doesn’t make either of us wrong, just different, we should try to get along and just accept our differences as movie fans and agree to disagree on some things.
And, on a final note, most film snobs walk around puffing on a pipe, wearing one of those arm patch suit jackets, I walk around in blue jeans, t shirts and, sometimes, puffing on a stinky cigar. And if you ever see me in a suit, and I’m not at a funeral, please feel free to call me out! If I ever become that pretentious, I really need to be taken down a notch, I don’t want to live like that!