What Inspired Me to Criticize

Crashing the FSR Staff party :)

Expanding from what Danny Bowes wrote, I come from a family who used to connect strongly through the love of film. Every weekend, we’d catch a discount theater showing, rent a VHS (and a VCR) or even fire up some Super 8mm home movies on our projector. It was an easy thing for us to do — just sit, watch, comment and enjoy.

Come middle school, I was terribly excited for the re-release of Star Wars, so much so that I would, in preparation, act out fan fiction in my room to an audience of myself. Those movies brought out the geek in me, and certainly, after years of video watching, lit the reviewing fire.

I tried my hand at a few critical school assignments, doing the likes of Blues Brothers 2000 and Wag the Dog. Back then, I was so wide eyed towards cinema that I liked just about everything I saw. Or rather, I liked the experience of watching everything. Maybe I’m attached to what my family once had? Maybe I’m just searching for a past I can never quite reach?

It wasn’t a specific movie that made me want to write about film as a career, but rather my Mother and her, what I thought was at the time, nagging. Either recognizing my compulsion to discuss movies or her attempt to get me to move the conversation away from her, she encouraged me to begin writing. From a blog, to newspapers and magazines, and now Medium, I’m half a decade into my passion, and couldn’t be happier.

We still watch movies from time to time, but these events are few and far between. I’m a one man AMC Theatres wrecking crew now.


Bill Arceneaux is an independent film critic from New Orleans and a member of the Southeastern Film Critics Association.

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