I’m so happy that I was chosen to host this month’s Scavenger Hunt! The timing is perfect, as the first time I took part in a scavenger hunt was exactly one year ago, in March 2020. Since then I’ve been making a list every month and it’s really helped me shrink my watchlist.
This scavenger hunt is divided into three sections: childhood, teenagehood and young adulthood. Prepare for a lot of little life stories and quirky anecdotes (and probably oversharing :) )!
The movies I chose to put on my list are movies I’ve seen and would recommend for each of the prompts (except for #15 and #23).
Please post your links in the comments. I’m looking forward to seeing the movies you choose. Have fun!
- April host raffle
- Master list (for rules and previous hunts)
If any of these movies do not work for you for any reason, you can:
1) pick a movie from my "Hidden gems" list or
2) watch any movie from your watchlist
-- CHILDHOOD --
1. We should start at the beginning. I was born in the spring of 1997. Coincidentally, that was also a great year for cinema, with movies like Titanic and Good Will Hunting. Watch a movie from 1997.
2. I was born and raised in Romania. While the Romanian film industry is quite developed, it is also often overlooked internationally. For this prompt, watch a Romanian(-language) movie. Here’s a list of some of the most popular and well-received ones (but you are always free to choose something else!).
3. To get an idea of what I am like, watch a movie from my list "15 films to know me". I realise it’s quite restrictive, so if for some reason these don’t work for you, you can always sub it.
4. My parents introduced me to movies already when I was very young and they didn’t necessarily restrict me from watching anything. I learned a lot about the world from movies and shows (I basically provided sex education for all the children on my block after watching Sex and the City with my mom). For this prompt, watch a movie with one of my favourite actors/actresses from when I was little: Julia Roberts, Meg Ryan or Robin Williams.
5. I have also loved going to the cinema ever since I was a little girl. I vividly remember my small-town, shabby cinema that didn’t even have heating (it’s been renovated since) and how one time I got mild frostbite on my toes because of how cold it was. But my love of movies goes far enough for me to have sat there until the movie was finished. This is one of my first memories of going to the cinema, and I believe it was for Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. In honour of this iconic first experience, watch a Fantasy movie.
6. My parents have always been loving and caring, while at the same time treating me as an individual with my own voice, thoughts and opinions. This showed not just in the movies I was allowed to watch, but in everything. I truly believe I would not be where I am today without their support, love and wisdom. Watch a movie that centres around parent-child relationships. You can get some inspiration here.
7. Moreover, I have always valued friendships and every friendship that I’ve had has been a whole different experience. Whether they have lasted or not, they all have affected me and taught me something. For this prompt, watch a movie about (female) friendship. Some inspo here.
8. Happy International Women’s Day! Today, we are celebrating women worldwide. Get your mom / girlfriend / sister / etc. some flowers today! And also, watch a feature-length movie directed by a woman. Here’s a list of some of my favourites if you need some inspiration.
9. As a kid, I was usually quite shy and I very much enjoyed my own company - all I needed were some colouring pages and some pencils to be happy. To this day, I still appreciate art very much, from spending hours in art museums to creating lino prints. For this prompt, watch a movie about an artist. I recommend Loving Vincent, as Van Gogh is my favourite artist.
10. Speaking of art, I always found the art in animated movies to be something special. I grew up watching movies like Anastasia and 101 Dalmatians on repeat, as I had these on videotape. For this prompt, watch a 2D animated movie.
-- TEENAGEHOOD --
11. A defining moment in my transition between childhood and teenagehood is when I faced my deep-rooted fear of dogs (I was even scared of puppies!). One day, I decided I didn’t want to live in fear anymore, so I sat next to the dog at my mom’s work. She was friendly, gentle, patient and understanding of my fear and she helped me overcome it to the point where I am not afraid of any dog now. I’ve had many dogs since and I really love all dogs. Watch a movie featuring a dog. You can find a ranked list of dog movies I’ve seen here.
12. While my mom always took me shopping with her and dressed me in pretty clothes, I really started to become more aware of fashion and the way I dress in my teenage years. One of my go-to movies for fashion inspiration was The Devil Wears Prada. For this prompt, watch a movie about fashion. You can see this article for inspiration, but you can find more online.
13. One of my favourite genres to watch during my teenage years was "Coming of age". I found great comfort to know that there are others out there who feel the same way I do and go through similar experiences. And they often gave me hope that everything will turn out just fine. Watch a coming of age movie. Here’s a list that can help you choose.
14. I can very precisely pin-point the year in which my love for cinema took a turn. I vividly remember watching Interstellar and Whiplash that year. I was mesmerised by what I was seeing and they changed the way I watch movies. Suddenly, I wasn’t just watching family movies and rom-coms anymore. A new world of possibilities opened up to me and I started exploring different genres. So to celebrate this year, watch a movie from 2014.
15. Around the same time, I started having conversations about movies with my friends. At the time, the local cinema was closed for renovations, so my friends and I would have to take a little road trip to the next town to go to the cinema. Of course, when award season came around, we were obsessed with watching all the nominated movies, making predictions, finding a way to watch the Oscars ceremony from outside the US (which is harder than you’d think!) and inevitably arguing about the winners. Today, the 15th of March, this year’s Oscar nominations will be announced. Watch any of the nominated movies. If somehow you’ve already seen all of them (hats off to you), then watch any movie ever nominated for an Oscar that you haven’t seen yet.
16. Along with my broadened cinematic horizons and the Oscars engagement, I also started to become more aware of other aspects of a film, such as cinematography. The first time I remember being taken out of a movie’s story because of the beauty of the cinematography was when watching MacBeth (2015). For this prompt, watch a movie that was previously nominated for an Oscar for Best Cinematography. Here’s a list of all the nominees.
17. During those years, I also discovered a whole new genre of movies I immediately fell in love with - biopics. The movies that started it all were The Imitation Game, The Theory of Everything and Unbroken. Watch a biopic about a person you know nothing (or very little) about. You can watch one from this list I made, but feel free to choose any other.
18. With that being said, however, my teenage years were defined mostly by school. I was a very ambitious student who cared a lot about getting good grades. I was in an intensive German bilingual class, which meant we had at least 6 hours of German per week. The moment I really started to like German and to really be motivated to learn it was when I went to a summer camp in the south of Germany, where I had to speak only German for a whole month. Watching German movies also really helped me find relevance in learning the language. Watch a German(-language) movie.
19. Besides learning a new language, what I really liked in school was to read and discuss books. I enjoyed both books I read for myself and for school. And often I missed out on movies based on books because I wanted to read the book first. Watch a movie based on a novel.
-- YOUNG ADULTHOOD --
20. After much debate I decided that, after finishing high school, I would study Psychology in The Netherlands. I always liked connecting with people and I had an interest in figuring out how people work, what makes them tick and learning about different psychological disorders. Watch a movie about psychology or a psychological disorder. You can find some inspiration here.
21. Today, on the 21st of March, it’s been exactly 3.5 years since my boyfriend and I met. We met at the university cafeteria on a day when it was very crowded. It was a meet-cute like in the movies. Watch a romance movie. Here’s some lists of my favourite romantic dramas and romantic comedies.
22. While studying abroad has been nice, it’s also been quite hard. Even now I often miss home or feel like I don’t really fit in. For this prompt, watch the movie Brooklyn if you haven’t seen it yet, as I relate to it very much. If you’ve seen it, watch another movie about immigration.
23. However, what’s helped me integrate in Dutch society is learning the Dutch language. My boyfriend and his family help me a lot with that and hopefully soon I will be able to speak it fluently. Of course, watching shows and movies in Dutch also helps with learning the language. Watch a Dutch(-language) movie with me.
24. While I’ve always loved travelling, travelling as a student was a very different experience. Before I used to travel only with my parents, but in the last 4 years I’ve been travelling alone, with my friends, and with my boyfriend. I find it very nice to be able to set your own pace. For this prompt, watch a movie that in some way involves travelling. Here’s some inspiration, but there are many more to choose from!
25. Being away from home for so long also made me appreciate my home country a lot more whenever I could go back. Ever since being with my boyfriend, he’s been travelling back home with me every time. Together we visited a lot of beautiful places in Romania that even I hadn’t seen before. Romania has many amazing places, from castles to waterfalls, and I would recommend everyone to put it on their bucket lists. To already see a glimpse of it, watch a movie that was filmed in Romania. It doesn’t necessarily need to be a Romanian movie. This page could help you out.
26. Something that I discovered in recent years has been the musical genre. While I did grow up watching and loving Mamma Mia! and Annie, I never really sought out musicals, until a few years ago, when I saw The Greatest Showman in the cinema. After seeing it, I ended up listening to the soundtrack practically every day for months and I also saw Hugh Jackman in concert, which was an unforgettable experience. Watch a movie from one of my favourite genres: musicals. I would like to encourage you to choose one from my "Top 10 musicals" list.
27. Besides movies and music, I’ve also always loved dancing. The seven-year-old girl dancing wildly in the living room to Rihanna is not much different from the current me who, until recently, was dancing like no-one was watching at parties and festivals. I can’t wait until it will be safe to go out dancing again. Watch a movie about dancing. You can find some inspo here.
28. One thing that I’ve always wanted to try but only got into in university is cosplay. Together with my boyfriend, we attended our first Comic Con dressed as Mary Poppins and Bert and we were hooked immediately. My favourite part about cosplaying is getting to wear a nice costume from a character that others recognise and love as much as you do. And if you’re lucky enough, you might just get a little kid thinking you’re the real deal. To celebrate all the beautiful costumes put together in film, watch a movie from my "Costume Design Favourites" list.
29. One thing that has remained a constant is that I really love observing actors’ and actresses’ performances, and once someone wins me over I will happily watch all their movies. For this prompt, watch a movie with one of my current favourite actors/actresses: Saoirse Ronan, Tom Hardy or Hugh Jackman.
30. However, none of the three aforementioned actors have won an Oscar… yet, although they were all nominated and would have deserved a win. And they’re not the only ones who haven’t won an Oscar despite their many amazing and sometimes iconic performances. Watch a movie starring an actor/actress who has not won an Oscar yet, but who you think would deserve one.
31. Finally, we’re coming to the end of the scavenger hunt. In the last year, since I’ve started participating, I was really challenged to watch things out of my comfort zone and I was pleasantly surprised. Some of those discoveries have been "old" movies. For this final prompt, watch a movie released before 1980.
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