Many of the articles I write begin as stray thoughts that occur to me while driving. I don’t know why, but for some reason driving puts me into a semi-meditative state and I think about things that I ordinarily wouldn’t consider.
Today’s installment is just such an example.
It began with the question…“If I were stranded on an island, which ten movies would I want to have with me?”
I know what you’re thinking…”If you were stranded on an island, wouldn’t you be more concerned with getting off the island than watching movies?”
Perhaps, but for the purposes of this article, this is an island with electricity, plenty of food, a high-def TV and DVD Player.
Anyway – coming up with my ten movies was a piece of cake, but then I had another thought…
“What if I was stranded on this island with a member of the opposite sex?”
Putting aside the obvious implications…what movies would they bring along?
How would the two lists compare?
Would the “Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus” thing come into play? Surely our movie selections would lead to conflicts.
Did either of us think to bring popcorn?
I know – deep stuff.
Anyway – I decided to conduct a very un-scientific poll to get a general idea of how bad it might be.
So I polled six men and six women and asked them to list their “Top 10 Desert Island Movies”.
My test subjects were chosen at random and none were told of the other’s choices. They were each sent an email with the exact same question – “As quickly as you can list ten movies that you would want to have with you if you were stranded on an island (obviously this island has electricity)”
I was very curious about the results – would I get one set of lists containing “shoot ’em up” movies and another set containing “chick flicks”?
Would everybody be able to list 10 movies? (two of my subjects couldn’t.)
How drastic would the differences be?
Would there be any duplication?
How many different genres would be represented?
This information has absolutely no sociological value. Come to think of it, it has no value of any kind, except that it occupies my thoughts while I drive – and it gives me something to write about.
Relax – I have no intention of listing 100+ movies for you to read through…I’d just like to point out some of the interesting findings the survey yielded.
There were 105 different titles named – covering 14 genres.
Men listed 58 different movies while women picked 50.
Only two movies were chosen by both men and women – Raiders of the Lost Ark and The Green Mile.
The most commonly named genre was comedy with 25 selections.
Most common by men was comedy (18 times) and the most common by women was drama (10 times). I gather from this that men would prefer to laugh while the women want to get, well, dramatic.
Surprisingly, at least to me anyway, was the fact that only five movies were picked by more than one person.
Raiders of the Lost Ark was picked by three people (two men, one woman).
The Green Mile was named twice, once by a man and once by a woman.
Jaws and Saving Private Ryan were each listed by two men and Castaway was listed by two women.
Here’s an interesting observation;
There were three movies chosen that were about people being stranded on an island; Castaway, Six Days and Seven Nights and The Swiss Family Robinson.
Perhaps these people (all women, by the way) thought they could use those movies to gather ideas to help survive.
When it came to which types of movies were selected by the different genders there wasn’t anything extremely surprising.
Men chose war movies four times – women none. Same with sports movies, men four – women zero.
The romantic comedy (aka “chick flick”) was chosen seven times by women and once by men. I have to admit this surprised me. I thought the women would have selected these films much more often. Does that make me a sexist?
Action movies were split almost equally, men eight – women seven.
Sci/Fi was a even split with six each.
Most of the rest were split fairly evenly as well.
In the end, my great “desert island movie” survey showed me something very interesting…when it comes to watching movies with a member of the opposite sex there’s really no huge conflict.
Sure, a man may have to sit through Failure to Launch before he can watch Jaws and a woman will have to force herself to sit through This is Spinal Tap before she can watch The Proposal – but is that really such a bad thing?
After all – you never know how long you’ll be on the island, so a couple of hours is really just a drop in the bucket.
I guess when you look at it, watching movies on an island is a lot like being in a relationship…if you’re willing to compromise on the things you’re farthest apart on, the rest will be that much easier and being on that island won’t be that bad after all.
As always – thank you for reading