Ed, of Ed’s review was born in a small town in the steel country west of Pittsburgh in 1951. A child of the 60’s I graduated with 201 other kids in 1969 and we were the only ones who could legally wear the infamous 69 t-shirts that were the rage in the 60’s. I went to college for a couple years, spent 10 years working for my Dad in a flower shop as a florist and delivery guy. Then my life changed and I went into my real career, electronics, computers and IT.
I worked for American Robot Corporation in Pittsburgh, then moved to the Los Angeles area to work in networking and email in the mid 80’s Currently I live next to Disneyland, my other great love besides movies, but before moving here I did a stint working for a large movie company headed by a mouse.
I worked in IT, so my background was computers, not movies, but a bunch of unused miles on an old airlines frequent flyer program provided me with a subscription to a daily magazine called “Variety”.
Armed with my daily commute to Burbank, and a daily copy of Variety for the train, I learned a lot about the movie industry and got fascinated by it.
At the same time, I learned of a new startup company called NetFlix, and immediately joined. Pretty soon I was on their “8 out” plan and watched movies back and forth on the train on my laptop every day! Since 2001 when I joined NetFlix I have watched over 6,500 movies from NetFlix alone. I started to put every new movie that was released on DVD into my queue. Often the unreleased portion of the queue was larger than the released movies as new movies were added from the day they released in the theater so I wouldn’t miss any.
But I was a movie buff way before that. I can remember as a very little kid begging my Mom for a quarter to go down to the theater on Saturday for the matinees. We paid to get in and stayed till it was dark.
I have been known on my day off to go the local Cineplex around 10AM when the first movies opened, and stayed to watch 4 or 5 movies in one day. And, YES, I went outside and bought a new ticket for each one! I only have one experience of movie hopping, and it’s a whole ‘other story, but it’s enough to say that the one I went to was awful, so we went and transferred to something watchable.
I bought one of the first VHS machines available from J.C. Penney back in the 70’s and paid about $750.00 for it. I used it for more than 10 years. And it took over 3 years to complete the payments on it. But it was my pride and joy.
Since the train days, I have ratcheted back on my 8 out plan, and I dabbled in Blockbuster’s program for a little while too, but have stayed with NetFlix over the years. I liked Blockbuster’s program and model, but decided to stay with NetFlix due to the larger inventory at the time. I still try to catch as many movies as I can in the theater, and still watch most of the new releases on NetFlix.
Am I a professional? No, not even close. But one thing about movie “critics” always irritated me. Why is it when they love a new movie, it sucks, and when they absolutely pan a movie as awful, I love it? I couldn’t figure this out. Then I thought that perhaps they were required to watch every movie ever released and there isn’t much “new”. So they are wowed by something extremely out of the norm. Something with a concept so bizarre that it intrigues them. But the average Joe moviegoer who hasn’t seen hundreds of movies about a guy and girl who meet and like each other, but something goes wrong and then they almost get back together but not quite, and finally a happy ending. They may not have seen 25 scenes of the guy running to get to the church before the bride says I do!
Then I thought that it’s interesting that I have seen a lot of movies, but I’m not that jaded. I still like the simple human stories that touch your heart.
I just love movies. So I will not be writing PhD dissertations on the film industry, or trying to inform Hollywood what they’re doing wrong, or how they need to change to make better movies. In fact, I will try not to be a critic at all, but rather a reviewer. I’ll try to watch the new stuff that comes out on DVD or in the theater, especially some of the offbeat ones you might have missed, and I’ll try to tell you what I thought in my humble opinion. I might help you to find something you might have missed, or to miss something that you would have wasted a lot of your time on. That’s all I’m trying to do.
Am I biased? Sure, in some ways. I come from a pretty big family, and I have 4 boys and a girl, all grown and 8 grandsons and 3 granddaughters. So my background and experience affect what I like and don’t like. With 5 kids, we often disagree, so I’m sure you will too. But I’ll try to review a movie based upon what I thought, and try to explain why I thought the way I did.
And another thing, my mind can change, so if you really disagree, send me a comment and change my mind. I may miss something important at any time!
Most of all, enjoy. I’m not trying to lecture on filmmaking. I’m just a regular guy who loves movies.