What I learnt from watching 200 movies in a year Arkadina.com

Every year I set myself a goal of joining in the 50 Film Challenge. But last year (2019, in case you’re reading this in the future) I upped the ante to 200! Yep, 365 days to watch 200 films. And it was a real challenge. This is what it taught me.

💎 It forced me out of my comfort zone.

Movie watching can be an expensive hobby, and that meant I watched a lot of films I probably wouldn’t have seen otherwise simply because they were there. ‘Snow White and the Huntsman’, for instance. That’s probably not the best example as I really didn’t enjoy it. I really liked ‘The Cabinet of Dr Caligari’ though. Fancy some 1920s German Surrealist horror? Yes please 😍

Lesson: There are so many genres and actors out there … try new ones.

💎 I can set a lofty goal, stay focused and reach it.

In order to do that other things may suffer or be sacrificed. And that’s ok … as long as I make sure the goal is worth it.

Lesson: You’re more capable than you think.

💎 The Art of Storytelling.

Seeing so many films so close together really highlighted the way the story was told. Without setting out to, I started analysing why a movie worked or didn’t work for me and asking myself how I’d fix it. I noticed the common threads and beats of a good story far more. I’m sure this will trickle down into my own writing. And plot holes became far more visible to me too. Usually I would just suspend my disbelief and go along with it but now I don’t fall for it so easily. I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or not ;)

Lesson: Plug those plot holes. Pronto!

💎 It’s not about quantity it’s about quality.

While it may be a breeze for some people, 200 was too much for me. I felt rushed. No sooner had I finished one than I started another. Nothing had a chance to settle in my psyche, things I would ordinarily recall with ease, such as a beautiful line or image, blurred together and I have no idea where this vague flash of familiarity came from. And I don’t remember most of them. I missed relishing them, watching the ones I loved again and seeing new things the second time round, then thinking about them before choosing the next. Movies are fun, not a sport. I’m glad I did it and reached my goal, but I’m aiming for a much more modest number this year.

Lesson: Slow down. You’ll have more fun.

If you’re interested in lists (don’t smirk, I love a good list) I’ve recorded them all in my 2019 Movie List .

What the most number of films you’ve seen in a year?