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Monday, July 25, 2011

If You Like Movies, You'll Love Moving Furniture

by Ken Craig (bio)

Get ready for the game sensation that is sweeping the nation!*

(*Please note, this game has yet to sweep this or any nation. But when it does, I would like full copyright benefits. Also, I would like it to be called Ken’s Movie Game. Catchy, right? Well, I got my degree in advertising – so yep, I know some things.)

Back in 1996, my friend Steve and I were coerced by our wives into attending some sort of “party.” (Think Amway, but with make-up.) I don’t remember the entire theme, but I do remember at one point both of us soaking our fingers in adjoining bowls, in preparation for manicures. I can’t say it was my proudest moment, but Steve and I had been friends since before puberty, so it wasn’t the first time we’d found ourselves in a situation that would never be discussed afterwards. (Like the time we decidedly kicked a fellow Scouter out of our tent at Scout Camp, so a younger Scouter with a much more attractive sister could stay in our tent and tell us what she might be looking for in a rugged, almost-Eagle Scout. That was probably the least talked about incident, pre-manicure.)

Anyway, we started talking about movie previews. And then we started talking about how often you see a tag line on a poster or preview that says:

If you liked _____, you’ll love ______.

You’ve seen them.

“If you liked Rocky, you’ll love Hoosiers…”
“If you liked Pretty Woman, you’ll love Green Card…” 
“If you liked Airplane!, you’ll love The Naked Gun…”

And so forth.

So out of an awkward moment of pampering, and all in the name of comedy, a game was created where we would try to come up with movie tag lines that connected two movies in name only (or a nebulous association), but not really in any other similarities. In other words, the movies had to have a similar word in the title, but would actually be almost polar opposite in subject.

Steve had the first one:

If you liked Dirty Dancing, you’ll love Dances with Wolves. It took off from there.

If you liked Sleepless in Seattle, you'll love Sleeping with the Enemy.
If you liked Fight Club, you'll love The Joy Luck Club.
If you liked Lilo & Stitch, you’ll love Thelma & Louise
If you liked Polar Express, you’ll love Pineapple Express

Now, player beware. Sometimes you will think of titles that actually are similar in name as well as subject, and I won’t be there to referee in person, but you should know that that just doesn’t work. Example: If you liked Superman Returns, you’ll love Batman Returns. (If you actually liked one of these movies, you would probably like the other. So it’s true, not funny. Thus, no points. More appropriately would be: If you liked Superman Returns, you’ll love Max Dugan Returns. I think we’ve all learned a very valuable lesson here. Way to dodge that bullet!)

Now, once you are comfortable at this level, you are ready to introduce a new rule. That of the connection being more imprecise. Instead of just sharing a word in the title, it might be a shared syllable only. Or a shared theme.

If you liked Dumbo, you’ll love Rambo.
If you liked Philadelphia, you'll love Fargo.
If you liked The Postman, you'll love The Cable Guy.
If you liked The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe, you'll love The Good, The Bad and The Ugly.
If you liked You Got Served, you'll love You've Got Mail.

One final note, when you are playing this verbally, you have to say it with as much conviction and excitement as a movie announcer would. Like you are just SO SURE that If you liked Mystic River, you’ll love Mystic Pizza!

So please enjoy this new game! If you are playing with a fellow movie aficionado, the two of you will have a great time. I would like to give a shout out to one of my favorite game players – Topher Clark. A fellow MMM contributor and one of my favorite people, who has also played this game with me since college.

If you liked The Godfather, you’ll love Father of the Bride!
If you liked Slumdog Millionaire, you’ll love Brewster’s Millions!
If you liked Return to Witch Mountain, you’ll love Brokeback Mountain!
If you liked Single White Female, you’ll love Diary of a Mad Black Woman!
If you liked Saving Private Ryan, you’ll love Save the Last Dance!

Play along, won’t you?  

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