Carpe Weekend: Many minutes of movie bliss
Assuming you had all the time in the world, what would you do with it?
I’m sure many would choose to spend their limitless hours with family and friends.
Others would put in more time at work or engage in some productive hobby.
I’m willing to bet, however, that a good number of you would spend a sizable fraction of that infinity in front of a TV set.
Everyone’s time is limited, of course. Unless you’re immortal, you only have so much time per day to devote to watching great cinema.
But should you ever have reason to hunker down in front of the tube for more than a few hours, here are some great movie series you can watch back-to-back that form pretty cohesive narratives when viewed together.
‘Back to the Future’
Despite featuring a story that spans 130 years, the epic, time-traveling “Back to the Future” trilogy only will take you 5 hours and 43 minutes to watch.
That’s not a bad deal considering how well these films blend action, science fiction and comedy into one consistent and infinitely enjoyable story.
‘Batman’ (Nolan trilogy)
If you can tack on a few more hours, don’t miss the 7 hours and 37 minutes of collective awesomeness that is the most recent trilogy of “Batman” films directed by Christopher Nolan.
From “Batman Begins” to “The Dark Knight” to “The Dark Knight Rises,” Nolan’s films portray the Caped Crusader in a more realistic light than previous incarnations.
The movies are refreshing reboots to the Batman character.
If you come across 13 hours and 17 minutes of continuous free time, check out all six “Star Wars” movies.
Sure, the original trilogy is far superior to the prequels, but to get the complete story of Anakin Skywalker and his son, Luke, you really need to see all six.
And yes, that also means consuming a hearty helping of Jar Jar Binks. Sorry.
Grab a case of Red Bull, turn off your cellular phone and prepare for 19 hours and 38 minutes of uninterrupted wizardly fun by watching all eight movies in the “Harry Potter” film franchise.
Sure, the books are better, but the movies do them justice by refusing to water down J.K. Rowling’s imaginative narrative for the sake of making a few bucks at the box office.
If you have a whopping 50 hours and 30 minutes — that’s slightly more than two days — check out all 24 films in the James Bond series.
Not all of them are gems (I’m looking at you, “Licence to Kill”), but you can’t beat a series that has been continually in production since 1962 and has featured six vastly different actors in the lead role.
A few bad apples
Some movie series are maddening because they started out with promise and dwindled into nonsense. If you want to keep your sanity, only watch select entries in the following series.
THERE SHOULD HAVE BEEN ONLY ONE: The first “Highlander” movie is a classic, and truth be told, it’s my favorite movie of all time. But the others?
Let’s just say a colonoscopy is more entertaining than sitting through the ridiculous “Highlander” sequels.
EXIT THE MATRIX: “The Matrix” series started out great, but the ending left many of us disappointed.
Avoid the final two movies like the plague, and you’ll be happier for it.
DINOSAUR FOOD: The first “Jurassic Park” is a classic.
The others should be sent back to the Cretaceous period and left there to die, preferably running for their lives from a hungry velociraptor.
Check your work
In case you’re wondering, yes, the provided running times are completely accurate.
I got the length of each movie from imdb.com and then painstakingly added them all up using my trusty laptop computer calculator.
It took me exactly 132 minutes, not including intermission.