Mama Mia was on TV again a couple of nights ago so of course I ended up watching the last hour or so and loving every minute of it. I ended up thinking to myself that this is a movie that I could see myself showing to my kids (if or when I have children) from a young age so they end up growing up on it and so it may end up be a “classic” to them.
I say this as someone who, thanks to my mother, had an interesting set of movies shaping my taste and loves growing up. The movies I grew up watching were Pretty Woman (yep a film about a prostitute but I’m guessing child-me didn’t really get that part), Back to the Future trilogy, Sister Act 1 and 2, Ghost (here came my love of Whoopi Goldberg), Dirty Dancing, and the Robocop films. Now one is certainly not like the others but I did love Robocop growing up – although my mum clearly never let me watch it from the beginning as when I watched Robocop for the first time in years when I was fifteen I got seriously upset and scared seeing what happened to Murphy before he ended up in the suit.
Other films have come along that have become what me and mother call “classics” in the sense that whenever they’re on TV we end up watching them no matter if it’s the start of the film or if there’s just ten minutes left. Those most notably are Legally Blonde (Elle Woods continues to be my inspiration) and The Mummy and The Mummy Returns (there is no third movie, whoever told you that is a liar) and Mama Mia is definitely finding its way into that category too.
I find it interesting to think what films I’d like to put on for my theoretical kids when they’re growing up, especially considering there’s gonna be at least ten more years of movies coming out that I may end up loving so much I want to brain-wash my kids with.
As it stands I’d love to pass on my love for some of my mum’s films, especially Sister Act, Pretty Woman and Ghost. Then Legally Blonde must be on the list because I’m all about great female characters and like I said, Elle Woods is an inspirational character and her story doesn’t revolve around a man (it may do to start with but she grows to not want or need the man she originally wanted and is fantastic). The two Mummy movies are on the list because they have my favourite fictional family and they’re a lot of fun. The Lord of the Rings will definitely be there, I did indeed grow up on these films as I went to see them every Christmas Eve from when I was 10, and a good love and respect of fantasy is important for a child. Think Mama Mia will be there as I grew up listening to ABBA (thanks again to my mother) and I think it’s another great girl-power type movie with a brilliant mother/daughter relationship. Of course there’s going to be some superhero movies in there – most probably X-Men and Iron Man as they are two of my favourites. Then we have Cool Runnings, Sydney White, the Fast and Furious films, Unstoppable and of course some Disney animated films.
I could probably go on and on about the films I’d like my theoretical children to grown up on as I have quite an eclectic taste and would love to expose young minds to the joys of different genres. I think it’s a great idea to not just give children “children’s movies.” While obviously they are suited for the child’s age, I think it’s important to show them some films where everything might not go right all the time and where there’s real people and not a lot of singing animals.