Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Cinematic Measures: Monday Movies

Monday movies are those that don't live up to the prestige of those who made them. They're the minor films by major directors, writers, even actors if you want to think of certain actors as the driving force that makes good movies into great ones. It refers to those movies in an artist's oeuvre that just kind of coast by when we're used to the work of said person brimming with emotion and/or intelligence. They are not the kind of movies that make the world better for existing and make us better for seeing them. Every director or star takes these kinds of days off. Now there's a name for them. The term Monday Movie in general refers to the world famous New York Times crossword puzzle and came into fruition after watching the documentary Wordplay, which, because I am not a New Yorker or a cross word puzzler, informed me that the Times crossword get's harder and harder as the week progresses. Monday being the easiest and the weekend being the hardest. Therefore, a Monday movie is, just as it's name implies, a little too easy, too phoned in, or too narrow to be considered a really great work. It's a film from someone we expect more from. Scoop is a Monday Movie for Woody Allen, The Color of Money from Scorsese, Death Proof for Tarantino and so on. They aren't necessarily bad movies, they just don't give us what we want from a star or filmmaker who usually delivers most of their work on Friday if you see what I mean.

Other Filmic Measures:
The Chocolate Bar Movie


  1. Monday Movies mean something different in our house. Monday Movies are movies whose subject matter is tough to swallow, so you save them for a weeknight instead of a weekend night. And Monday night is the most weeknight-ish of all the weeknights, isn't it? Considering that these movies are either dark, depressing or intellectually challenging, they could actually mean the exact opposite of the meaning you've given them here -- which I of course think is a very good definition as well.

    But shouldn't you have saved this post to write on a Monday? ;-)

  2. You've coined a great phrase here (and I love the etymology). Though it has its admirers, I thought Burn After Reading was definitely a Monday movie, with a vengeance. Of course directors like the Coens, Allen, and Spike Lee are bound to have a number of Monday movies given how prolific they are; whereas if a Malick or a Kubrick can't really afford to have one...