Saturday, February 2, 2008

Film Science

Now is the time for some serious science. As suggested below, I am on a mission to discover the perfect film to make indoor trainer cycling as painless as possible. After some intense thought, input from experts, and a few too many cups of coffee, I have a plan.

Step 1:
The perfect cycling trainer movie will include: a rockin' soundtrack, minimal plot complexity, a high score on the "excitement index", and dialogue that is both memorable and amusing without requiring the viewer's full attention.

Step 2: The Variables
Soundtrack (from soporific to rockin')
Excitement Index (Dialogue to Action ratio)
Plot Complexity (lower is preferable)
Dialogue (from dry to witty)
Eye Candy (includes all types of visual stimulation)
Watchability (Based on Entertainment Value scale)

Length: Minutes
Epoch: Year
(Target) Audience
Previously Viewed (Yes/No)

Step 3: Experimental Design
  • 2-3 movies per session
  • Minimum of 45 minutes on the trainer per film
  • Test one genre per session
  • Minimum of two test subjects per session
  • Rate each movie for each variable using the scale below
The Universal Crap-Awesome Rating Scale

  1. Crappy
  2. Meh
  3. Yes.
  4. Groovy
  5. Awesome!
Extreme examples of Crappy and Awesome will be included with the application of the intensifier "Epic" i.e. "Epically Crappy" or "Epically Awesome"

The Entertainment Value Scale: Sample Films
Please Note: This scale is based entirely on personal preference and should be adjusted for each viewer accordingly.
  1. Evolution, Starship Troopers, Wrinkle in Time (Made for TV), Lake Placid
  2. Transformers, The Village, Mean Girls, Die Another Day
  3. Fifth Element, The Chronicles of Narnia, The Lion King, Bridget Jones' Diary, Unbreakable
  4. Serenity, Sixth Sense, The Matrix, Notting Hill, Cars, Mr. & Mrs. Smith, Dogma
  5. Chicago, Gladiator, As Good As It Gets, Toy Story, Pride & Prejudice (BBC version)

Several (read: too many) genres have been identified for testing. As each is tested the results will be posted for consideration, criticism, and your entertainment. This is an ongoing process and revisions will be made to the experimental design as needed. Once all the films and variables have been tested to the extent of my patience and interest in the project, the final results will be tallied and the ultimate cycling trainer movie equation will be revealed. I know, you can hardly stand the suspense. I understand, but remember: You can't rush science!

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