There are a few films I won’t watch, and a couple of genres I have no desire to watch.
The genres are action thrillers and horror: unless there’s something a bit cerebral going on I’m not interested. This means I’ll watch Tinker Tailor and Rocky Horror, but nothing from the Mission Impossible or I Know What You Did franchises. The main reason for this is that I’m not very keen on watching violence with no point to it.
And the films I won’t watch? It’s a smallish list and it starts with Schindler’s List. The reason for this is that I think I would be too upset to watch it. I read the book way back when it was called Schindler’s Ark so I know what the story is and I think I would be overcome with the sadness of it on film. Others I’m avoiding are The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas and Hotel Rwanda. I also won’t watch Sophie’s Choice again. I’ve seen Remember Me twice, but I’m thinking about whether I can watch that again, and I don’t want to see United 93. Don’t misunderstand – they are all good films, and it isn’t a moral question, my issues with them are more to do with their effect on me.
There’s something about film that is immersive; it’s a multisensory experience, even on DVD at home. That means that a film has more of an emotional impact on me than a book. I read a lot and get very absorbed in the world of books, but the depth of my absorption is to a large extent under my control. The vividness of the pictures I create from an author’s words can be moderated by how much I can stand, but when I watch a film it’s in the hands of the director and there are some images and emotions I would prefer not to have in my head.
Now I’ve started to think about it there are a few more coming to mind: my husband has just asked me to set the recorder for 127 Hours and my blood has run cold at the thought of that film…and that reminds me, I don’t want to see Touching the Void either.