My Childhood Films that made me love Cinema

I always wonder exactly when it was that I started liking films more than the average person. I did an A Level in Film Studies when I was 16 and I chose the subject in Year 11 when I was 15 (even over similar, more general subjects like Media Studies) so it was before then.

At 14 years old, my friends liked Tarantino and Tim Burton which I’m sure made a difference to developing my eclectic palette. But what about even before then? Yeah I watched Disney and Pixar films, but they don’t feel like I loved them more than the average child. I was a pretty ‘obsessive’ child to put it lightly. And from the below films and film franchises, it’s easy to see how I generally became obsessed with all things filmy.

My Childhood films that made me love cinema including School of Rock, Harry Potter and Mary-Kate and Ashley films |

The Harry Potter Films (2001 – 2011)

I think we were all a bit obsessed with this franchise, but I took it one step further. More specifically, I was completely obsessed with Daniel Radcliffe when I was about 11 years old. Looking back, it’s a bit difficult to understand why. I bought any magazine with a poster of him so I could put it on my wall. I bought one of those Charity wristbands for a random hospice he supported in London. And when it came to a Religious Education project at school where we had to build a shrine, I embarrassingly made one for Daniel Radcliffe while most others did them for their pets or beloved deceased relatives.

But back to Harry Potter, I would watch through every single ‘Behind-the-scenes’ special feature over and over again. I loved seeing how the special FX team built Dobby and the Cornish Pixies, learning what a DOP is. I lapped it all up to become even more obsessed about how films are made.

My Childhood films that made me love cinema including School of Rock, Harry Potter and Mary-Kate and Ashley films |
© 2004 Warner Bros. Ent. All Rights Reserved

Mary-Kate and Ashley franchise

Weren’t Mary-Kate and Ashley totally super cool? And didn’t you just want to dress and be exactly like them? Me and my sister loved their movies that took them all over the world. We loved their TV shows Two of a Kind and So Little Time, and we also had their dolls and I’m sure other paraphernalia that our mother indulged us in.

As well as the actual films, I also watched every TV documentary on the twins which I think first got me obsessed about being an actress. They looked like they were having so much fun and had a fantastic life and they were child actors. Then when I realised I didn’t really like acting like I used to that morphed itself into more behind-the-scenes film career dreams as I’ve got older.

My Childhood films that made me love cinema including School of Rock, Legally Blonde and Harry Potter and Mary-Kate and Ashley films |
© 2001 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc.

Legally Blonde (2001)

This film may seem like a bit of a left turn to the first two examples, but I absolutely adored Legally Blonde. It was one of the very first DVDs we had when we got a DVD player. I’m very, very proud of my 8/9-year-old self loving Elle Woods because I honestly think it’s a great film for girls to watch. Maybe apart from when she uses the insult ‘frigid bitch’… I also got very obsessed with this film. I remember watching it again and again and noting down all the outfits, accessories and even home furnishings that Elle Woods had, so I could ask for the things I wanted most for my birthday and Christmas.

So it was definitely one of my favourite childhood films, but how did it make me love cinema? I guess when you’re as obsessed over a character and you’re 8-years-old, you inadvertently believe that the actress is the character. I would watch Reese Witherspoon in ANYTHING. Cruel Intentions (1999) was showing on TV one night a few years later and I didn’t hesitate to watch, and Walk The Line (2006) is one of my all time favourite films. When you invest so much in a character and believe in them, who knows how far that could go.

My Childhood films that made me love cinema including School of Rock, Harry Potter and Mary-Kate and Ashley films |
© 1999 – 2015

School of Rock (2003)

And we finally get to School of Rock. A film I’ve wrote about before in which I list the life lessons School of Rock taught me, and I was pretty obsessed with it. Dewey Finn as a character was perfect for rousing enthusiasm. And I watched the ‘Behind-the-scenes’ special features and commentaries on the DVD over and over. I guess it’s similar to the effect the Mary-Kate and Ashley films had on me. I saw all these other 10-year-old in a major feature film and I totally wanted to do that too.

How obsessed I got over these films and ideals makes me pretty glad that I was able to watch all of these really cool films. Kids really do take in anything and everything and I thank my lucky stars what I was subjected to meant I can now appreciate cinema and films for the wonderfulness that they are.

Do you have any films that stick out in your childhood?

Want MORE?

APRILfonso Cuaron: 5 Reasons why Prisoner of Azkaban was the best Harry Potter film

Lessons I learnt from watching School of Rock (2003)

A-Z of Film Terms to Fake it as a Film Buff

Almost Ginger’s Guide to Cinema Etiquette

My first time going to the cinema alone and how it made me a better person

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My Childhood films that made me love cinema including School of Rock, Harry Potter and Mary-Kate and Ashley films |


I'm the human and hair behind Almost Ginger. I'm a cinephile travel obsessive vegetarian currently residing in Manchester.

9 thoughts on “My Childhood Films that made me love Cinema

  • 23/10/2015 at 3:35 am

    Love your list! The Mary Kate and Ashley franchise were part of my childhood too! The movies aren’t very good, but I’d get jealous that they get to go around the world. The Harry Potter franchise is one of the greatest franchises, and I loved both books and films, though I lean towards the books more. Elle Woods is one of Reese Witherspoon’s best roles (not a fan of the second movie), same goes for Jack Black in School of Rock. I don’t think any other actor could have pulled the roles off as well as they did.

    • 26/10/2015 at 3:59 pm

      Exactly! I read a buzz feed a while ago which was all about the expectations of travel as represented by Mary-Kate and Ashley which was amusing. My glad you like Legally Blonde! (totally with you on the 2nd) because everyone is adamant it’s awful but I just have to disagree. You’re right, Dewey Finn was pretty much wrote for Jack Black!

  • 23/10/2015 at 8:50 am

    Enjoyed reading about the films that have inspired you. It’s funny how a childhood interest develops and shapes the person you become.
    P.S. These films were coming out when I was at Uni – how to make a girl feel old! ?

    • 26/10/2015 at 4:01 pm

      It’s quite the mixed bag but I guess that’s how it works. After I published this post, my mum said ‘but what about Bedknobs and Broomsticks? What about this and that?’ but even though I have other films I loved I can’t pinpoint any inspiration to them.
      Haha you know you’re not old! 😉

  • 23/10/2015 at 4:20 pm

    Reading this makes me feel very old. I was already married with children of my own when these came out.

  • 26/10/2015 at 4:02 pm

    Some good and some “interesting” films forming your childhood appreciation of cinema. I was certainly a fan of the Harry Potter films but came to the franchise later than most. I remember seeing Prisoner of Azkaban in the cinema – my first Harry Potter film having completely avoided the first two – and being rather disappointed. But I then caught up with the first two when they were screened on TV and re-watched Prisoner of Azkaban, finding a new appreciation of it. In fact, it remains my favourite of the series.

    My film childhood was definitely made up of stuff from the 80s – The Goonies and Ghostbusters were favourites – but Jurassic Park was probably the first film where, having seen it on the big screen, I first realised how powerful cinema could be.

    • 26/10/2015 at 4:58 pm

      Yeah that’s the main thing about my very early influences, they’re completely bizarre and I think I loved the ‘glamorousness’ of film before I loved any audiovisual aspect. My appreciation of the form definitely came through watching Tim Burton and Quentin Tarantino because I loved the unconventionalness of them and then started to branch out further. Though my mum does say that whenever she took me to watch films I would just sit mesmerised at the screen and I’d get to the end of the film and realise I hadn’t eaten any of my sweets or popcorn, so clearly there’s something there.

  • 13/11/2015 at 4:11 am

    A strong list! 🙂 I’d have to go with: The Princess Bride and Labyrinth! STILL two of my favourites. : )

    • 13/11/2015 at 2:50 pm

      It’s a bit of a weird list but I guess we don’t plan our influences! Oh Labyrinth is a great shout there, I’ve not see The Princess Bride yet but I know I need to.

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