Monday, August 19, 2013

5 Obstructions Blogathon: Obstruction #3

Alright, so I’ve finally got around to piecing together (very literally) my latest entry in the ‘5 Obstructions’ blogathon.  This has been such a rewarding blogathon because it really has presented challenges I was not all that familiar with.  Take last month for instance.  I’ve never interviewed anyone, and yet I cannot say that anymore, for now I have!  This month was a particularly challenging ‘obstruction’. 

‘Write a review of a movie only by copying and pasting words (at least 5 consecutive words from one sentence) out of other reviews of the same movie.’

What the hell!?!?!

Seriously, I was at a loss, but the idea intrigued me to no end.  My initial response to this was to rush out and see ‘Only God Forgives’ because the idea of me actually liking the movie and then somehow using the onslaught of negative reviews I’ve read on the film to spin into a positive review was so enticing to me.  Sadly, my window closed and I wasn’t able to make the trek into Dallas to see the movie (it’s only showing at ONE theater near me, and that is still an hour away, and the ONLY showtime is 10:20 PM, which is not an easy get when you have three kids in the house).  Then came the conundrum of selecting a movie and then actually finding other reviews on blogs across the internet for that same movie.  How was I going to do this? 

So, I kind of cheated.

Not really, but sort of.  I used a fellow blogger’s ‘series’ to find a database of collective ‘reviews’ on the same film.  How?  Well, I hopped, skipped and jumped over to The Film Experience, where I visited his ‘Hit Me With Your Best Shot’ page, selected a movie and found a slew of linked entries to his own series.  There was a bounty of films to choose from, and the great thing was that most bloggers who participated not only selected a singular shot, but put so much time and effort into explaining why that shot worked so well with the movie that I basically found a slew of movie reviews to choose from.

I went with ‘The Talented Mr. Ripley’!

I also want to note that I wanted a golden checkmark (I think I should get one for the first obstruction too, since I basically made ‘Les Miserables’, a film that I love, look like a laughable piece of garbage) so I selected ten reviews that I draw from, and I draw from them a few times.  I’ve linked them throughout the review.  Fighting the urge to elaborate or write my own review was hard, but it wouldn’t be a challenge of this was easy; right?

Here goes nothing!

So there you have it.  It is a tad short, and in parts sounds a little fragmented, but I tried to find coherent thoughts that conveyed my own feelings on the film.  This was a tough one.  I didn’t want to veer into plagiarism, and yet I felt like not using complete thoughts or points would make the review feel incomprehensible.  I also was under the impression that I was not allowed to use my own words at all, and finding the time to actually splice together multiple sentences and thoughts into one sentence or thought was not on my side.  Working 40 hours and raising three kids does not allow for that kind of time.  Still, I think I did what the obstruction called for!  I hope you enjoyed it.

Special thanks to Nathaniel Rogers for, unbeknownst to him, making this a tad easier on me.

I do feel like a bit of a pussy since I actually had ten pages of excerpts from reviews and yet my review is barely a page long.  Like I said, I didn’t want to verge into plagiarism and the idea of using THAT MUCH from someone else’s review felt wrong.  So, this is what I came up with.

Here is a complete list of the reviews I pulled from:


  1. That's a great job. I've just gotten 10 quotes that I'm going to use for my review which will be hard to do. I don't want to know what's the next obstruction going to be.

    1. Thanks! I am also fearful of the next one!

  2. Excellent copy and paste review. As I mentioned a few weeks ago, I really need to rewatch this. I have a feeling Damon might knock Norton/Pitt out of my Best Actor lineup that year. I might give it another look this weekend. :)

    1. 1999 is such a hard year because it was so great. Between Crowe, Norton, Damon, Pitt, Osment, Willis, Penn and Broadbent I don't know who to choose and who to knock out, and then again, I haven't even seen 'The Straight Story' yet!