07 September 2008

"Worth renting": so indefinable, yet so easily decided

I went home last weekend (home home--where my mother lives, where I grew up) and when I got there I thought, as I always do, "Ah, nice relaxing weekend with nowhere to go and nothing to do but watch movies and read a couple of books," and then as always, spent the entire three days in endless rounds of gadding about (her doing, not mine).

So my mom and my aunt and uncle and my other uncle and I were at the pizzeria/gas station/coffee hang out/convenience store/machinery parts store/movie rental place, having coffee (well, they were having coffee; I had tea) and I had a look at the movies on the wall while they talked.  I idly thought about renting a movie for my mom and me to watch later, but I dismissed almost all of them as being not worth renting. And then I suddenly realized how different my standards are when I want to actually plop down money to pay for a rental dvd versus when I have free access to the same titles at the library. I don't really know what makes a movie worth renting or not, but it was quite clear to me as I looked at them which ones were and which ones weren't.

I don't think the money was the only issue, though. The other hurdles included, but were not limited to, "Is it worth the hassle of bringing the empty case up to the counter and having the clerk find the movie behind the desk, and also having to dig out the money to pay for it?" as well as "Is it worth making an event of it?" (Meaning: "We only have a couple of days to watch it. Do we have enough time to set aside for both of us to watch it together and return it before it's due? Because if we don't, and we have to return it without watching it, then that's wasting money as well as time.") Also, most of the movies I get from the library, I watch by myself. Having another person watch a movie with you ups the stakes--you want to make sure that they will like it too, and that they haven't seen it already.

I saw many, many titles at the convenience store that I would never have paid money to see, but which I had been totally keen to watch when I had had the opportunity to check them out from the library. I can't even remember what most of the titles were at the convenience store, but I know one of them was Stick It, the gymnastics ("It's not gym-nice-tics") version of the cheerleading movie Bring It On. I got Stick It from the library once, and I liked it; especially the first half, which had attitude with a capital A and which got off some pretty funny lines. The second half was more of a conventional sports movie but still not bad. Would I have ever rented this movie? No. Was it worth checking out from the library? Hell, yes.


  1. With me, there's the additional criterion of: will my husband kill me if he watches one more Bollywood movie without a filler movie in between? LOL

  2. Yeah, I don't have to worry about that. :)

    Does he have a favorite Bollywood movie, or does he just tolerate them all for your sake?