That metallic smell of unfiltered city water as it pours out of a kinked rubber hose, hitting my face instead of my mouth, remnants of the childhood drinking river cooling the pavement underfoot; a ghost rises from the asphalt as the heat releases into the air.
In some literary circles, movies are considered the enemy of the literate; a crutch of sorts for those lacking the imagination to dive into a novel. For others, the silver screen can inspire and incite, causing a new wave of ideas to flood the mind that leaves the writer no choice but to write.
Now, I am no expert on film or what elements a film should have in order for it to be considered part of the elite class, but I am a writer who has found inspiration in the films listed below, and I think those are the only credentials I need. The list is not in any particular order to denote importance, and it certainly isn’t a definitive list by any means. There are movies on here that were adapted from books, and even though the book is always better, these adaptations come very close to capturing each author’s original intention. The purpose of this list is not to say which films are about writing or writers or the drudgery of the lit life, but to list the films capable of giving writers a boast of confidence, creativity, and inspiration. Each film listed below has left me with a need to create, whether it be a poem or a short story or even just a single sentence that will eventually lead to something grand. This top ten list should act like an aid of sorts to those stuck in the trenches of disillusionment.
Feel free to suggest movies that I may have missed because Lord knows I haven’t seen them all. Enjoy!
One of the hardest things anyone can experience is watching the person who raised you, who has loved you before you had a name, slowly transform into a withered and helpless version of their former selves. After years of decline, it gets harder to hold on to the memory of who they used to be; the man who was always found working on the yard, tending to his home in defiance as the rest of the neighborhood succumbed to neglect. He now lays in a room off to the left down a long corridor, distinguishable only by the peeling black 104 nailed on the frame, spending his days pushing call buttons and being turned every two hours and being spoken to by loud, not-listening voices. None of these nurses or doctors know him in flannel shirts, drinking with the garage door open so he could wave and whistle. None of them know how he would bring me lunch during school because making friends was never easy. He will end his life as patient 104, the one who asks for a lot but always says thank you. There are only a handful of people left who hold those memories of when he was upright and independent, when he could show the world that he is a good man.
Now, all that remains are stories.
I’ve loved John Mayer for a long time. Actually, I should say I have loved what he does. People like to pigeonhole him or even denounce his talent because of who he is portrayed as to the general public, but none of that should matter. He is one of the greatest advocates for creative expression of our generation, and I understand how ridiculous I may sound right now but who cares? Watch this video. Listen to his advice. It should set you on fire.
“You have all this time to really shut down the momentum – the wheel stops. And all this seems to funnel into, ‘Ok, you didn’t see this coming, but there’s a beauty to it that I insist on seeing.’ The beauty is that this is not the maximum depth, keep going. Go deeper.” John Mayer