Why Letterboxd Is An Essential For Movie Lovers

The social media movie sharing site that is a necessity for your film viewing experiences and preferences (particularly in quarantine).

You hear things like Movie Twitter and cinephile tossed across social media, and its often unclear whether these movie specific phrases are meant to throw insult or praise.

I wouldn’t call myself a film expert or anything along those lines, but Letterboxd is starting to mold me into an attempted one.

If you’ve never heard of the site, don’t feel out of touch. I didn’t know of it until late last year when everyone was posting their end-of-the-year lists across their socials using the site’s list format.

The social media site for movie lovers was founded in 2011 by a tight-knit group of people in Auckland, New Zealand, designed for showcasing their members’ film interests.

It’s expanded beyond this initial vision to become it’s own type of Twitter and Facebook.

The free version of the site lets users log an unlimited amount of films, add films to a diary, create their own lists, and rate and review films. The next level is Pro for $19 a year that gives you more refined data on your movie watching preferences and boasts additional profile features. Patron is the highest tier for $49 a year, providing you everything in Pro with early access to new features and the ability to add backdrops to your profile, reviews, and lists.

I currently have the free version and am considering upgrading in the near future so I can have more control of my profile and see data related to what I’ve watch throughout the year: what kind of films I watched, most-watched director, actor, etc.

It’s gotten to the point where my movie watching has almost become secondary to my Letterboxd logging. I want to add movies to “diversify” my catalog of watched films and create lists that are personal to me, yet varied to intrigue the vast amount of content and users that occupy the site.

In a weird way its pushed me to explore films I may have never considered initially. I recently watched Joe Versus the Volcano after digging through Tom Hank’s back catalog. It’s such a hidden gem of his and of modern film in general. It’s a quirky film that explores the life of Joe, who is miserable in his job, and decides that sacrificing himself to a volcano is the best way to confront a deadly diagnosis.

It has romance, comedy, drama, Hanks dancing, and is the first collaboration between him and Meg Ryan (who plays three characters).

That’s a movie I probably wouldn’t have considered watching had I not read the reviews, praising its performance and impactful narrative.

It’s often the blunt and amusing reviews that standout. They read as viral tweets instead of formal movie criticisms. It only took some poignantly worded words about Luke Wilson to convince me to watch the 1998 rom com Home Fries.

for some odd reason i grew up on Home Fries, but i’m lucky i did because luke wilson looks like a full course meal in this and i’ve been fed ever since

There are people that become fixtures of the site, as close to being an influencer as you can get on the site. But that’s not really the point.

As divisive as it can be, sharing your opinions on movies is cathartic to those who enjoy really enjoy cinema. Its an outlet for those that don’t want to annoy their family members or friends incessantly with their prose on the latest Paul Thomas Anderson, or offer up a hot take on an accredited actor.

Proving that even pretentious movie fans (and those that flounder to be) deserve a source of creative relief.

Here are a couple of my own lists for your consideration.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: