The Movies That Move You

I really want to settle down into bed with Mockingjay (Kindle edition!), so fortunately my friend Ariel had a blog entry/contest for me to post today:

I  love the collective gasp of the crowd when the actor rounds the corner during a chase scene and is confronted by a giant alien – or really any other theatrical element that elicits a passionate enough reaction to draw out audible emotions.  The magic of theatre – cinematic or live – is the power to engulf our sense of reality and transport us to a world in which our petty problems do not exist.  A good movie benefits from a well developed plot, quality acting, and fancy special effects.  However, to leave me with ‘happy after movie glow,’ a performance must suspend my existence and, for an hour and a half, replace it with the characters’ world views.  I’ll admit creating that magic is a tall order, which is why I’ve asked Jamey to lend me his blog for a day.

I am curious to know if other people experience this same transcendence when they step into a theatre.  What do you think are the key elements that allow a movie (or a play) to so entirely replace your own state of mind?  Do you have a favorite movie that you believe achieves this goal particularly well?  More importantly (for those of us who are students with limited time) what is the one movie being released in the next 3 months that you think will provide the deepest immersion?

To make the game a little more fun, I’m offering two free AMC movie passes for the most convincing responses – one for the best movie overall, and one for the must-see movie of the next 3 months.