Sunday, 23 April 2017

Films That Made Me: #1 - The Kid Classics

Hello to you readers, I hope you've had a great week! 
Today I bring the first instalment of the most influential films in my life, from those I watched as a little girl, teaching me lessons I have never forgotten, to the fresh new films that are able to etch an unforgettable mark on my mind today. I'll start, of course, at the very beginning with childhood faves.

For me, the art of film has played a predominant role in my life, its been one of the only things that have remained a heavy feature since being introduced to them at the delicate age of three years old. All of the films mentioned in this post play a distinct part in my personal history and development. They mark my transitions through the ages and all have at least one memory attached to them. Re-watching them over the years is like reliving those moments whilst also diving into the stories through new eyes, taking away something new each time.

1 | THE LION KING (1994)
If this film isn't in everyone's top films of all time, then my life is a lie. Loosely based on Hamlet, its basically Shakespeare! Not only is the film beautifully put together in terms of animation, casting, plotline and music, but the powerful storyline is one that stayed with me after my father passed away when I was very young. The film has remained a source of comfort to me over the years and oddly, the first memory I have attached to this film is watching it in the living room at around the of age three, while my dad assembled his model aeroplanes at our dining table just behind me. I feel this strange sense of  irony and foreshadowing surrounding the film for me. That said, my uncle didn't do it.

Belle is definitely the most influential Disney Princess that I ever watched. A vibrant, enthusiastic and educated young woman who could seriously sing. I wanted to be her, no question. Even before I was old enough to understand the real meaning of judging a book by its cover, I always loved the idea that there was more to the beast than met the eye and that sometimes you have to look a little harder, or at the 'unusual' to find something great. It's a lesson I've kept with me for a long time, particularly as I got older and felt like an outcast at times throughout my school life, it reminded me to be drawn to others who maybe aren't like everyone else, and that that is what makes them, and me, special.

This film is definitely up there in my favourite films of all time. Disney reworked the classic 'Treasure Island' story and brought it into space, with alien pirates and gorgeous astronomic surroundings. If the exciting and twisting adventure doesn't reel you in then the score might just seal the deal. Also as a young impressionable eight year old, Captain Amelia voiced by Emma Thompson is one of the most badass and brilliant role models EVA. This story is always the one I go to when I'm ready to get away from the every day world.

This film is definitely a little different to classic Disney, from the makers of 'Shrek' this film tells the story of a wild stallion, his capture into the US army and his fight to return home. For a film with very minimal dialogue and a voice over from Matt Damon (stay with me), its hugely powerful, aided by the incredible score by Hans Zimmer and some pretty banging tunes from Bryan Adams. If you're an animal / horse lover, this is definitely one for you. As a young girl who often wished her legs would run faster than they could, living vicariously through a horse that could race with the wind was definitely a compromise.

I discovered this towards the end of my primary school years and completely fell in love with (Atreyu the warrior, ahem) the fantasy story, with totally unique, mad characters and the use of old technology of puppets and green screens, I still find it completely endearing and emotive! That said, I find that some of the insane CGI skills plastered across the industry today are a bit overdone. Anyway, the film tells the story of a young boy who gains possession of a special book 'The NeverEnding Story'. Running from bullies and math tests he hides in his school attic and reads, only to find that the book needs him to help their world survive. The story encourages a great imagination and if you don't want a luckdragon of your own after watching, then please leave, we cannot be friends. I love that the story also reaches beyond it's own world and into the audience, I think is a really cool touch and not often done in kids movies. I feel like you'll either love or hate this one. I spent night after night watching it repeatedly at around age eleven and forced my bestie to watch it this Christmas, so yeah, I love it.

What films made you who you are?

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