Before Avi arrived, my (Michael's) favorite watching activity involved movies. So after Avi arrived, I've tried to add the two together, sort of. And although baby movies aren't exactly my preferred genre, here's a list of some favorites:
Raising Arizona. Probably the best baby movie ever. Reveals that everyone is a sucker for a baby-- sleazy salesmen, escaped convicts, redeemed convicts, cop-turned-convict, boss' nutty wives-- everybody. And if you're not a sucker for babies, you get blown up with your own hand grenade. I've always enjoyed, been fascinated by, and respected this movie. Now, I understand it.
She's Having a Baby. Not one of the finest films ever made, but I think some parents can connect with Kevin Bacon's inevitable sense of abandonment of other worries when the baby comes along. It seems that after a baby arrives, all other priorities in life drop a notch.
Child's Play. Just kidding. Next.
Away We Go. The scenes with the neo-hippy 'attachment parenting' couple were the funniest (even though this is closest to our own parenting style-- Hollywood can't help but get carried away with anything out of the mainstream). Disclaimer: this film might make you never view baby strollers in the same way again.
At this point, I've run out of any other baby movies to recommend. I'm realizing that the world of cinema is bankrupt when it comes to babies. Actually, all of the above movies probably aren't even worth your time, except for Raising Arizona, which I recommend viewing on a monthly basis. But this raises the question--why the shortage of good baby movies? Because babies can't memorize enough lines? control their facial expressions for maximum effect & persuasion? develop their stage presence? cuss? smoke? represent themselves in actors unions? I'm not sure exactly. But whatever the reasons, they need to get with the program. And all of their little indie home movies aren't going to cut it either; most of their parent-directors are under-qualified and biased and don't understand good lighting. Actually, I should admit that we have a baby film of our own in the drafting stages, starring Avi of course. It will involve flying and maybe a few pyrotechnics. It will be a genre-fusion of fantasy, suspense, Bolivian anime, and puppetry. I'm working on the storyboards. In my head. I'm planning for Wes Anderson to assist me with the pacing. The soundtrack will be heartbreaking and will include Rosie & the Originals and Yoko Ono. It will make Look Who's Talking look like a swapmeet betamax version with the sound dubbing off-kilter. It will be one of the recommended baby films in some other sleep-deprived father's baby blog. It will be epic and our lives may never be the same afterwards. We will have to flee the country with its sharp-clawed paparazzi and move to the Ukraine so that Avi can lead the semblance of a normal life and not wind up in rehab at age 8 or worse-- acting in her own reality show. Maybe we better not do the film after all. Maybe we'll stick to photographs. It was a good idea though.