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Follow to a Lack of Interest

After my last post, I had a couple of interesting conversations with some friends around my age who have also dealt with similar feelings regarding entertainment. I’ve written in the past about the paradox of choice which suggests that an abundance of options actually requires more effort to choose and can leave us feeling unsatisfied with our choice and it sounds like this is becoming a more and more widespread problem. So many games, Game Passes, streaming services, shows that you have to watch in order, collectibles, three hour long movies… the list goes on and on, it’s no wonder we are dissatisfied and burned out. It takes more effort just to pick something to do than to actually do it. Which is true, because I’ll open up all five streaming services I have and browse them all before picking something to watch these days. It’s just overkill.

Nonetheless, I’m also wondering if a lack of depth also factors into this disinterest. This week, the only thing that really caught my interest was the fact that Better Call Saul season five was uploaded to Netflix. I watched it as it aired but over the past year Brandy joined me on a rewatch and she still needed to see it. The writing and depth of characters is what drives the Breaking Bad universe. No shortcuts are taken and the show has provided hours of discussion with my friend Alex over the years. I even reached out to him on Wednesday to see if he’d watched Moon Knight yet. I watched the first episode last week but wasn’t sure if I wanted to continue and as I said to him, “Compared to Better Call Saul, it seems like a waste of time.” His response, “LOL I think all of Marvel is like that.”

He’s not wrong, the Marvel movies and shows are enjoyable and fun, but they do lack that certain something. I guess, they really stick in their “popcorn fun” category and just don’t branch out on discussing topics that truly make them relatable. Which then again, leads me to my next theory: I just can’t relate to a lot of what I watch.

The days of mid range comedies and dramas are over. Everything is a show (do we really need eight hours to tell the story of the stolen Pam and Tommy tape?) or a three hour long movie. Sadly, I don’t see a lot of movies that seem geared towards my age bracket. There aren’t a lot of stories of about men in their late thirties/early forties trying to make it in this crazy world. When I was much younger, movies like Clerks, Chasing Amy, Waiting, and so forth all existed to show some sort of ways guys navigated through life. I was able to see myself reflected on the screen and in so, felt some form of comfort and connection. Nowadays I just don’t get that. There will be brief moments here and there, but for the most part everything I watch and enjoy has very little relatability to me. And sadly the way the entertainment world has turned over the past few years I don’t see that changing anytime soon.

So, what is a guy to do? Go back and try to find movies that I can connect with. Maybe dig around in those late 90’s/early 2000’s dramadies and indie films and see what I can find. Take stock of what I spend my time doing and reduce and revamp.

I think the number one thing I want to be aware of going forward is, “Am I doing this because I’m enjoying it or am I just doing it?” I want to ask myself this question every time I make a commitment to a book, movie, playlist, video game, etc. I cannot continue going through the motions, forcing myself through stuff, or “waiting for it to get good.” I’m ready to get vicious in my decision making when it comes to entertainment, and also try and limit the number of things I consume in the first place.

I will say, in preparation for this blog, I thought back to the movies that really stood out over the past year or two that I’ve watched. No doubt, some of the big screen films like Scream, Spiderman No Way Home, and Ghostbusters were absolute blasts of a time. They truly captured that magic of movies that drove me to love the art form in the first place. But other films, smaller films, like Lars and the Real Girl, Jeff Who Lives at Home, Brittany Runs a Marathon are some of the movies that pop in my head more often. Small, independent films a bit more grounded in reality. It reminded me of how much I loved independent films over the years and how thanks to streaming and my own laziness, I really haven’t spent much time exploring the genre. I think it’s time to refocus my energy into finding stories that are designed to both make you think and feel something other than awe or nostalgia. Then maybe I can see if I get myself out of this funk of not being interested.

Published inSelf-Reflection

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