Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Cinema Cycle Status

(Cardio Workout And Reviewing Movies At The Same Time)


DATE VIEWED: Ongoing since April 2014

TITLE: Almost 2,000 of them

FORMAT:  (see above logos)

TIME RIDDEN / FILM LENGTH: (selected media length)


TOTAL CINEMA MILES LOGGED: (from the earth to the moon, how many times?)

I am not quite sure how this whole thing started.  It began when I came across a copy of “Regard for the Planet”.  A laserdisc of the photos of Marc Garanger.  It contains 50,000 photos that he took on his worldly travels.  This was before computers or the internet and since photography has always been my hobby I bought the disk and a player to go with it.  That was probably around 1995.  

As the years passed I started to collect LaserDiscs here and there before they finally went out of production (curse you DVD!).  Then along came the internet and eBay, and all of a sudden all the laserdiscs that I ever wanted were cheap, cheap, cheap.  

Fast forward to 2014 and I found myself with 1800 laserdiscs and retirement quickly approaching.  One day I had the epiphany to combine several interests into one and see if I couldn’t make it work.  

I decided to find a way to systematically go through my collection and watch each film while exercising.  As I work out I will keep track of the results and write a review of each performance.  The only drawback I could find was choosing which films to watch first and which to skip.  This was solved by putting all of the media onto a spreadsheet and letting the computer calculate which films I would watch next at random.  I call this the random media generator (RMG).  

As I started the project, it began to evolve to include other media that I had collected (VHS, DVD, etc) so that the collection now numbers over 2,000 titles.  

So here I am a year and half into the project and I have gone through about 4% of the collection and I have traveled about 2,500 miles.  I cycle every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.  Tuesdays and Thursdays are for hiking.  What I have found along the way isn’t what I expected.  

The media collection that I have amassed is pretty varied.  While I have purchased some large lots of media (boxes of discs sight unseen), most of the individual disks that I have picked up are dramatic, documentary, foreign (non-Hollywood) pre-1960s and musicals.  I am not a huge fan of fantasy, violence and horror although I have quite a few of those as well.

What I find myself watching as I cycle through this 20th century media output is a cross section of the human experience that we as a society we have chosen to preserve for our own entertainment and for future generations.  It says a lot about us a society and about our cultures and how they differ and how they are similar.  

I don’t expect to be able to get through the entire collection before my time on the planet is up, but I am curious to see just how far I can go.  About 50 films into the project, I added a small video short and post these to YouTube.  They can be viewed as a channel on my YouTube account.  

The more I watch, the more interesting the overall experience has become, not to mention challenging.  Oh, and I have lost about 30lbs as well.  Go figure. (WIN!)

So if you want to start from the beginning (I know you are curious), here is a link to the first entry. The overall project is also connected to other data collection tools on the internet whose links are at the bottom of the blog.

If you want to see where all the magic happens three times a week. Check out the tour of the Man Cave.

Finally, if you want to take a look at the RMG and all its contents, the link to the Google Spreadsheet that contains the data is here

This film is a part of my LaserDisc Collection.

This film was viewed while exercising on my recumbent cycle.  A summary of my time spent working out on my journey through movie-land can be found on Strava.com.

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