What are your favorite movies and have they inspired you?

Q&A With Shay Each Sunday

Movies—a wonderful creation.

Q: What are your favorite movies and have they inspired you?

A: I’m sure tons of movies have inspired me, even if I’m not totally aware of it. It’s strange because I really love movies, but whenever someone asks me what my favorite movie is I draw a blank.

As for some recent movies I really liked, I saw Ben is Back and thought it was really moving and emotional and also probably fairly accurate in terms of content.

I LOVE Split. I saw the sequel Glass and thought it was pretty good but I really liked the focus being on James MacAvoy’s character in Split. He’s seriously so talented to make it totally apparent which personality he was without it having to be said. My favorite was Hedwig, especially that dance scene—amazing. But, like, Patricia, too.

One of my favorite older movies is Simon Birch. So sad. That one always stuck with me over the years and was always the one movie that would make me cry no matter what.

Another older movie I loved was The Butterfly Effect. I used to consider it my all-time favorite (for drama anyway) but there are some pretty disturbing scenes that upset me a lot, so even though it’s a phenomenal movie with such a cool premise, I’d really have to be in the right state of mind to watch it. I feel like in different movies and shows and books people are always quoting the idea of the butterfly effect (a butterfly flaps its wings in Brazil and causes a tornado in Texas…or wherever you want to set this butterfly on the other side of the world), and that movie actually truly showed that idea in amazing detail. I love the idea of one little thing happening that can alter the rest of your or somebody else’s life. That notion actually does inspire me a lot, but I don’t think I have personally used it in any of my writing—perhaps it’s too cliche to write about now anyway, though most things have been done before, we just find new ways to present them.

Another kind of disturbing movie that I loved was The Good Son. That was a really creepy and twisted story, which I’m usually down for.

As for comedies there are tons that I’d consider my favorite within that genre, but I wouldn’t consider them my favorite overall. I guess I don’t necessarily consider comedies my favorites overall in general. But, Billy Madison—clear classic. Also, love Happy Gilmore of course. Weirdly, I didn’t like The Waterboy, I’m not even sure I saw the whole thing. Liar Liar was great, probably my favorite Jim Carey movie (although he actually was in Simon Birch, weirdly enough). But I definitely typically think of him for comedy, his facial expressions leave me in awe. Also, Miss Congeniality and Legally Blonde will always be two movies I could keep watching—they’re fun movies. I feel like they don’t make movies like that anymore!

I used to like horror a lot more than I do now. I’m too afraid now. It’s true as you get older you become filled with more fear (at least I have). The best horror movie though—The Exorcist! I think I saw it for the first time when I was about 8 with my sister, so needless to say I was filled with that fear from a young age. But that movie is still terrifyingly great—I just don’t plan to watch it.

My favorite sports movies are The Blind Side…and Rookie of the Year. Sports movies are definitely inspiring and motivating, and usually heartwarming, but I also don’t consider them my favorite genre.

My favorite genres are drama and thriller. I can’t think of any amazing thrillers at the moment. Like I said, I draw blanks when asked this question. There really needs to be some sort of app like Goodreads but for movies. Does that exist?? I may need to look into it now.

Aside from actually having favorite movies, I really love to go to the movies, even if I’m not necessarily dying to see what I’m going there for. Movie theater popcorn is like one of my favorite snacks—but I don’t really have a clear favorite one of those either!

So, yeah, I don’t have any one favorite. I like a lot of movies, and also feel disappointed in a lot of movies. I find inspiration in many art forms so of course movies inspire me, but I don’t think I have ever seen a movie and thought of my next great novel idea or anything like that. But, that doesn’t mean they don’t influence me and sometimes make me think differently or see things in a new light. What are your favorite movies?? And what art forms inspire you most?!