SIXTY-THREE YEARS A MOVIE FAN by Norman Olden [1991]

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earlytalkiebuffRob
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SIXTY-THREE YEARS A MOVIE FAN by Norman Olden [1991]

Unread post by earlytalkiebuffRob » Mon Jan 01, 2018 1:14 pm

Has anyone else here come across this rather odd book? It's a memoir - sort of - of a young man who turned to filmgoing when illness put paid to his sports activities, and from 1927 he kept a record of every feature film he saw in a cinema, together with details of when, where, whether alone and how much he paid, his target (reached) being 10,000 films. The book is a digest of this diary with modern-day comments.

Unfortunately Olden's filmgoing seems to have become a sort of trainspotting after he realised how many films he was clocking up and he seems to have been in competition with himself to reach certain targets, even to watching films which had little or no appeal. At one point he resorts to watching some fifty porno films to beef up his figures, then decides that they didn't count after all! Having seen a few back in the 1970s I would say "Why not?'" even though (aside from titles which might not qualify such as LAST TANGO IN PARIS) I have forgotten the titles of all aside from the memorably titled 1971 entry DANISH DENTIST ON THE JOB! Whatever the quality of these films, they were made for public exhibition and should be just as relevant for counting as a drive-in movie, a Hammer horror or an exploitation film from the 1940s. There's not a lot of mention of these films as he seems to have concentrated on films from the major American studios as well as 'art-house' (a term I personally dislike) movies.

One of the pities of the book is that we don't always get the reasons for Olden's approval or dislike of a film, the condensed nature of the book sometimes just giving us a stream of titles seen. There is also mention of long unseen, unavailable or missing films such as THE WAY OF ALL FLESH (1928), SHOPWORN ANGEL (1929) and PARTNERS IN CRIME (1928) for which one would like to read more. Perhaps the titles were all that remained in his memory.

He was also scornful of watching films on TV, probably not realising that the this would become a more significant way to see films as DVDs and online watching was a long way off. Nowadays the choice in home viewing is a lot greater, especially when one is reluctant to abandon ones feline or canine companions in order to see a film. There is no mention of a cat or dog in his household, and of course the cost of feeding one or two of the little darlings would dig into one's film budget.

An interesting book of its kind, but one which could have been so much more revealing of the films viewed.

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oldposterho
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Re: SIXTY-THREE YEARS A MOVIE FAN by Norman Olden [1991]

Unread post by oldposterho » Mon Jan 01, 2018 1:53 pm

earlytalkiebuffRob wrote:At one point he resorts to watching some fifty porno films to beef up his figures...
Ahem...

But yes, that was totally the reason he watched those porno films. Still, my OCD admires his OCD, Nowadays it would be so much easier to accomplish that task since we can do it from our living rooms. That would be 200 movies a year for 50 years, I feel confident many of us could muster it.

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boblipton
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Re: SIXTY-THREE YEARS A MOVIE FAN by Norman Olden [1991]

Unread post by boblipton » Mon Jan 01, 2018 2:01 pm

According to my count, I am at 31,418 movies, of which 18,090 are features. Those are all titles listed on the IMDb, so pornographic or not, certain standards are there.

Not that I consider it an achievement in any positive sense of the word. I could just as easily be measuring urine production by volume.

Bob
Life's too short to sit on our rears watching other people's work.
— Bob Fells

wingate
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Re: SIXTY-THREE YEARS A MOVIE FAN by Norman Olden [1991]

Unread post by wingate » Mon Jan 01, 2018 2:14 pm

I too have written up a similar diary for visits to the cinema and films on TV.No idea how many but easily in five figures.

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Donald Binks
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Re: SIXTY-THREE YEARS A MOVIE FAN by Norman Olden [1991]

Unread post by Donald Binks » Mon Jan 01, 2018 6:38 pm

boblipton wrote:According to my count, I am at 31,418 movies, of which 18,090 are features. Those are all titles listed on the IMDb, so pornographic or not, certain standards are there.

Not that I consider it an achievement in any positive sense of the word. I could just as easily be measuring urine production by volume.

Bob
That's quite impressive. If one takes that you might have watched one feature film each day, that equates to something just over 49 years! The thing is, how many of the pictures can you actually remember? (I am looking forward to the day when I am so old I will only need to keep the one DVD and just watch it over and over without complaint).

Also, as a matter of interest since you have raised the subject, do you have a tally on your urine production over the same period?
Regards from
Donald Binks

"So, she said: "Elly, it's no use letting Lou have the sherry glasses..."She won't appreciate them,
she won't polish them..."You know what she's like." So I said:..."

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boblipton
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Re: SIXTY-THREE YEARS A MOVIE FAN by Norman Olden [1991]

Unread post by boblipton » Mon Jan 01, 2018 6:44 pm

Donald Binks wrote:
boblipton wrote:According to my count, I am at 31,418 movies, of which 18,090 are features. Those are all titles listed on the IMDb, so pornographic or not, certain standards are there.

Not that I consider it an achievement in any positive sense of the word. I could just as easily be measuring urine production by volume.

Bob
That's quite impressive. If one takes that you might have watched one feature film each day, that equates to something just over 49 years! The thing is, how many of the pictures can you actually remember? (I am looking forward to the day when I am so old I will only need to keep the one DVD and just watch it over and over without complaint).

Also, as a matter of interest since you have raised the subject, do you have a tally on your urine production over the same period?
I'm pretty sure it can be estimated accurately.

Bob
Life's too short to sit on our rears watching other people's work.
— Bob Fells

earlytalkiebuffRob
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Re: SIXTY-THREE YEARS A MOVIE FAN by Norman Olden [1991]

Unread post by earlytalkiebuffRob » Tue Jan 02, 2018 4:17 am

oldposterho wrote:
earlytalkiebuffRob wrote:At one point he resorts to watching some fifty porno films to beef up his figures...
Ahem...

But yes, that was totally the reason he watched those porno films. Still, my OCD admires his OCD, Nowadays it would be so much easier to accomplish that task since we can do it from our living rooms. That would be 200 movies a year for 50 years, I feel confident many of us could muster it.
Alas, according to Mr Olden, that doesn't count at all - or at least, not then!

earlytalkiebuffRob
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Re: SIXTY-THREE YEARS A MOVIE FAN by Norman Olden [1991]

Unread post by earlytalkiebuffRob » Tue Jan 02, 2018 4:24 am

Donald Binks wrote:
boblipton wrote:According to my count, I am at 31,418 movies, of which 18,090 are features. Those are all titles listed on the IMDb, so pornographic or not, certain standards are there.

Not that I consider it an achievement in any positive sense of the word. I could just as easily be measuring urine production by volume.

Bob
That's quite impressive. If one takes that you might have watched one feature film each day, that equates to something just over 49 years! The thing is, how many of the pictures can you actually remember? (I am looking forward to the day when I am so old I will only need to keep the one DVD and just watch it over and over without complaint).

Also, as a matter of interest since you have raised the subject, do you have a tally on your urine production over the same period?
A friend who had a problem in that area asked me to take a measurement for comparison. However, I could do this over a week (taking cold weather into account) and do a very rough estimate...

(I am reminded of an episode of 'One Foot in the Grave' where Victor is reading a letter to the local paper complaining about the council's attitude to the writer's extensive collection of samples...)

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