Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Movie Wars

Looking for the next great time-suck? Looking to put a double-tap to the back of the head of your productivity? Let me introduce you to my newest Internet obsession: Flickchart.

The concept is simple. The website shows you posters for two movies. You click on the one you like better. And then it uses those results to rank the movies you've chosen (and the ones you've passed over. (It weeds out movies you haven't seen.)

And you choose. Star Wars over The Hunt for Red October. Chinatown over Porky's. Fargo over Batman. Choices that, at least to my mind, are pretty clear-cut.

And then it gets cruel. How do you choose between Ferris Bueller's Day Off and The Princess Bride? Which is better, Chinatown or Young Frankenstein? A Christmas Story versus Who Framed Roger Rabbit? Who comes up with these pairs? When I logged on to do this, I wasn't expecting the Spanish Inquisition.

Come to think of it, when I logged on to do this, my tea was still hot in the mug. Now it's cold, and only half-drank.

But I choose. And I click. And I click some more. Eventually, I find the filters that lets me compare movies of a certain decade, certain director, certain actor, or just movies I haven't been asked about yet. I find the way to specifically get questions about a certain movie, which takes some of the randomized weirdness out of my list (True Lies was my number one movie for a disconcertingly long time).

But the choices don't get any easier. Which is better: This is Spinal Tap or Aliens? King Kong or The Wizard of Oz? And how can I choose between Star Wars Episode I and Transformers? Can either of them be better than anything?

For movie lovers, this is like playing a video game of Sophie's Choice.

Join me, won't you?

(P.S. I left the computer on when I went to bed, and when I woke up and logged on it was asking me to choose between Road to Perdition and Spaceballs. I had to close the window before I was sucked in again.)

1 comment:

Alan M. said...

Thanks a lot, Rob. Now it wants me to decide which I like better: Batman & Robin or Terminator 3. They may as well subtitle this one "death is not an option"...