Movies that define "generations"

I often marvel at how certain movies connect to define generations. Not always generations in the geneology sense, but in the "values formative years" between 17 and 25 years of age. Even that age group is flexible.. some of us grow up late, while others grow up younger (and some, indeed, never grow up at all). Yet there still seems to always be a movie that sticks with the psyche of a group of like-mature individuals. And I find it...

quite entertaining (and enlightening) to discover those and watch them. It helps ad perspective (pun intended), and certainly helps with marketing. Some older folks may claim "American Graffiti" or "The Graduate". Recent answers from SEOs included Wall Street (greed is good) and Boiler Room. I feel sorry for the Boiler Room guy. He must be working for one of those top-ranking SEO firms -LOL.

I am a [url=]Matrix[/url] fan. The original, of course. I grew up late for sure (graduate school does that to you) but I, like Neo, had been searching for many years. My buds in IT turnd me on to Office Space (I had skipped it completely... not a big "friends" fan, and it had that Friends girl in it) and Office Space has most certainly become a generational movie for many independent webmasters. Honesty, I had a connection to EraserHead back in the day. Who would have thought David Lynch was a genius back then except the very few, very strange EraserHead lovers? (By the way, didn't David Lynch go community-digital in a big way very early? In my opinion he had the wrong webmasters, but the right idea).

I always connected with Bill Forsythe's Local Hero. I have deepest sympathy for the guy who started to tell me how Toxic Avenger IV changed his world view forever. And I have always felt sorry for the piss-drunk skateboard style kids and their defining movie Kids. Geesh.

So what movie captured your attention in a personal or highly-emotional way, such that you own it on DVD, consider it a cult classic, or otherwise recite passages from it at opportune moments? Any that you feel still drive your values as you work in Internet marketing, SEO, or web publishing?


I was about 8 when I first

I was about 8 when I first saw the movie that made me want to kiss a girl. Casablanca

I was 17 when for the first time in my life, I saw a possible future that was dark. A Clockwork Orange.

Same year, 2001 a Space Odyssey

I was about 20 when a movie made me realize no one had to get hit with a pie in the face to be funny. Make that hilarious. Young Frankenstein.

I was about 45 when my faith in the art of story telling and movie making was restored by A 6th Sense

fight club.

fight club.

Fast Times at Ridgemont High

"At Ridgemont High Only the Rules get Busted!"

Sounds like they were talking about SEO and Google ;)

And of course...

Back to School

"And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light."

Which should be updated...

Rage, rage against the dropping in the SERPs

There's one thing I learned


"You know Bill, there's one thing I learned in all my years. Sometimes you just gotta say, "What the f^ck, make your move."

"It was great the way her mind worked. No guilt, no doubts, no fear. None of my specialities. Just the shameless pursuit of immediate gratification. What a capitalist."

SEO centric

The Jerk

Navin R. Johnson: The new phone book's here! The new phone book's here! This is the kind of spontaneous publicity I need! My name in print! That really makes somebody! Things are going to start happening to me now.

Of course, replace phone book with serps and its not all jerky.

Another vote for Repo Man

Another vote for Repo Man. Great movie, great soundtrack:

"Look at 'em, ordinary f**king people, I hate 'em."

Risky Business:

"In a sluggish economy, never ever f**k with another man's livelihood."

Ferris Bueller's Day Off:

"Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it."

You can't define my generation without a few John Hughes flicks. Add The Breakfast Club and Pretty In Pink to Ferris Bueller for starters.

Office Space absolutely

Office Space absolutely defined my time at the end of my large corporate office stint.

Peter Gibbons: You see Bob, it's not that I'm lazy, it's that I just don't care.
Bob Porter: Don't... don't care?
Peter Gibbons: It's a problem of motivation, all right? Now if I work my ass off and Initech ships a few extra units, I don't see another dime, so where's the motivation? And here's another thing, I have eight different bosses right now.
Bob Porter: Eight?
Peter Gibbons: Eight, Bob. So that means when I make a mistake, I have eight different people coming by to tell me about it. That's my only real motivation is not to be hassled, that, and the fear of losing my job. But you know, Bob, that will only make someone work just hard enough not to get fired.

So many movies, so little time

In the same category as boiler room and wall street:
Glengarry Glen Ross

Blake: A-B-C. A-Always, B-Be, C-Closing. Always be closing, always be closing.
Blake:A-I-D-A. Attention, Interest, Decision, Action. Attention - Do I have you attention? Interest - Are you interested? I know you are, because it's fuck or walk. You close or you hit the bricks. Decision - Have you made your decision for Christ? And Action.

Probably what they used to train at TP;)


Randal Graves: Which did you like better? "Jedi" or "The Empire Strikes Back"?
Dante Hicks: "Empire".
Randal Graves: Blasphemy.
Dante Hicks: "Empire" had the better ending. I mean, Luke gets his hand cut off, finds out Vader's his father, Han gets frozen and taken away by Boba Fett. It ends on such a down note. I mean, that's what life is, a series of down endings. All "Jedi" had was a bunch of Muppets.

Repo Man

Miller: The life of a repo man is always intense.

Happy Gilmore

Happy Gilmore: During high school, I played junior hockey and still hold two league records: most time spent in the penalty box; and I was the only guy to ever take off his skate and try to stab somebody.

Tough call between this and Billy Madison. Probably a couple Farly/Spade movies should be included as well.

I'd love to ponder this almighty question more, but wasted plenty of time already;)

Before my time but the most

Before my time but the most amazing film ever which I truly wish was avaialable on DVD, but what defines my childhood?

Star Wars, and to me it will always be #1 not #4 in a series of 3, not 6!


Although a bit hokey, for me Tron was a defining movie. Not only did it have kick ass CGI graphics before anybody knew what CGI graphics were, but it also defined the role man has with his diety. The programs inside of the computer looked up to the their creators called "users" with "god like" respect. When Flynn who was a "user" got sucked into the computer one of the programms said "but you're a user you have to know what to do", to which he replied "you guys know what it's like. You just keep doing what it looks like you're supposed to be doing no matter how crazy it seems".

Religous Disclaimer
I am a supporter of Free Speech on the Internet. All opinions, ideas and concepts expressed herein are the sole opinions of the author of this post, and are intended solely as individual expression, and are not part of any willful act of oppression, coercion or deliberate attempt to change the opinions of any other authors. Any expressions of belief or philosophy are included for informational purposes only, and are not to be construed as a statement of superiority of said beliefs or philosophies over those of any and all other authors. Any use of slang, slander or derogatory names is in jest, and should not be interpreted literally. Any insinuated disagreements with other authors are disagreements with the ideals expressed herein, and are not disagreements with any beliefs or philosophies, except where such disagreements are the subject of discussion. Any disrespect contained within written posts is not actually disrespect, it's actually respect; it simply appears as disrespect... in the most respectful way.

If you can dodge a wrench, you can dodge a ball


Forrest Gump

I think Forrest Gump is unique in that it defines so many generations, so well. I think the scene where he is running across the country for no particular reason resonates really well with me. It's less important in many ways what exactly you do, but in how you do it.

From the perspective of a craftsman, Cinema Paradiso has always been an inspiration. Although the film is really about filmmaking, it makes you think a lot about the spirit that embodies your craft, whatever it is.

Blade Runner - not bad

Blade Runner is not a bad choice (and for some reason it's not sitting in my collection yet).

I'm sure NFFC will be along with the Francis Ford Coppola and Scorcese choices, which are equally valid.

But my own pick would be Dodgeball for so many reasons.*

If you're going to become true dodgeballers, then you've got to learn the five d's of dodgeball: dodge, duck, dip, dive and dodge!

* Not the least of which is that I'm sure that I've met Ben Stiller's character on a number of SEO forums.


I enjoy Star Trek but only mildly so, certainly not a cultist. While the movies spun from the original tv series were even more lame than some of the shows, there is a quote that I used fairly often from The Wrath of Kahn:

Revenge is a dish best served cold.


Blade Runner taught me that bots can't be trusted but often make things sorta right after causing a bit of misery...