Festering in the human mind are the quirky questions without answers, the lingering doubts that lower our IQ, and the heralds of nonsense from the confines of ridicule. We find ourselves irked by reality, an annoying plane of hissy fits that tires our imaginations.
For entrenched within rumours and whispers, lies the Ultimate Movie Collector. Often called the UMC, this elusive film lover owns every good or bad movie that’s ever been made. A sucker for nostalgia, he collects them in all their physical media splendour.
His real name is unknown since he uses a pendulum he bought from a dollar store to hypnotize file clerks. It didn’t take long to wipe out every record and document with his actual identity.
He goes from Walmart to Walmart, finding movies in any format. No VHS is too rare for him. No DVD is too much to buy.
The songs of every film the UMC gets from the Jaws theme to the Star Wars anthem, can be heard all around the world. This signals the growth of his collection, but therein lies a puzzling celebration.
TVs and DVD players breakdance in their homes. Video rental stores sing cheesy musical numbers on top of shopping malls. The Hollywood sign does cartwheels on L.A.’s Walk of Fame.
The UMC’s variety of movies puts bigwig collectors like Quentin Tarantino to shame. A vacuum-sealed reel of Tommy Wiseau’s The Room was found under the Oscars’ red carpet. A cassette tape of Avengers: Infinity War stuck in a VHS player shaped like the Infinity Gauntlet. These are just a peek of the UMC’s passion for all things film.
The collector treats each motion picture like a lifelong pal. No matter their box office numbers or critic scores, he will never leave a movie behind. Still, this cinephile’s origins remain a mystery.
No one knows the UMC’s exact age, his family roots, his job, how long he’s been collecting, or where he lives. Not even news outlets can reach him. He has no social media. A good way to blend in for a legend of his calibre.
His anonymity only provokes people to entertain their own wacky stories about him, and boy are there many.
Some say he’s just a college student escaping from the dreary monotony of essays and lectures. He loathes conflicting deadlines. He dreads making the “perfect” course schedule. Collecting movies spare him these pains.
Others think the UMC wants to humiliate the term “streaming services” for being too alliterative. This collector is no fan of alliterations. He doesn’t like “catchy” products. It’s a cheap way for companies to be “down to earth” with their buyers.
The most popular theory is that the UMC dug secret tunnels under old theatres and archive houses to steal the movies he still needs. He has a special place in his heart for film history and old Hollywood, hence why he favours these places. Nobody, though, has found his underground network.
Today, the UMC is a hot topic among film nerds. Debates about him swirl out of control, landing us in the town of “I don’t wanna talk about this anymore.” Population: wasted time.
Whether you’re a believer or a skeptic, we shall never know the Ultimate Movie Collector’s full story. One thing’s for certain — his love for film earns him a place among myths, fairy tales, and folklore.
The day he stops collecting, Hollywood production companies will go bankrupt, film sets will implode, and celebrity autographs will be erased before you can sell them. So, pray he doesn’t run out of physical media movies. They’re the only things between us and cinema pandemonium.