Updated: Jun 18, 2020
I could tell you all 101 films I watched this year. And it’s because of the every movie lover’s dream app, Letterboxd.
Sometime last year, my best friend told me while we were sitting on her bed in her old, film poster-decorated room that I needed to get this app. I never played games or downloaded photo editing apps, or anything. I was a Twitter and Instagram kind of person and that was it, but I was hooked. We laid there and scrolled endlessly on her phone of movies we had and hadn’t seen, checking them off as we went. We were reminded of our childhood favorites and films we laughed out loud about them together. I never imagined this act to be so addicting, but it was. So, I got the app and made every other movie lover I know get it too.
I’ve seen Letterboxd described as “a social media for movie lovers.” Started in 2011 by Matthew Buchanan and Karl von Randow, it’s a platform for anyone who watches, likes, or loves movies to come together. The website and app allow you to see what your friends have watched, let the world know what you’ve seen, your favorite movies, rate what you’ve seen, make lists, see what’s popular this week, and more. It’s become a handy way to learn and keep track, and that’s only the start.
Thanks to Letterboxd, a whole new world of film is at your door. Because of the several feeds on your home page, you’re able to discover movies you never knew existed. From seeing what my friends have recently watched and what’s been popular lately, I’ve been able to view previously unheard of films to me such as: Velvet Buzzsaw, the short film Yes, God, Yes, and Fat Girl. All of which I’ve enjoyed wholeheartedly and would never have known about without this app.
Not only is Letterboxd the gates to new films, but new opportunities as well.
I met Mia Vicino in my school’s Women and Film club, and I instantly was struck by her spunk and overall cool. I apparently have a good sense, as I found out later Mia is the most followed female user on Letterboxd (you can find her at @bratpitt). If you think when I talk about Letterboxd I’m talking about a small nerdy community within my social circle, I’m not. Mia is followed by over 31,000 app users and has gotten to the point where she has put her email in her bio for business inquiries. It’s worked for her too.
“Letterboxd also bolstered my confidence in my writing ability and unique voice, which helped me during the internship interview process for Willamette Week, an alt-weekly in my home city of Portland. Now, I write movie reviews and a weekly film column for that paper.” Vicino says.
For those interested in pursuing film critic she adds, “Even though there’s almost no monetization to be garnered from Letterboxd “fame,” I’ve found that the professional value is high.”
If you love movies and want to get addicted to tracking everything you see, discovering more new watches, or even become an unexpected successful film critic, get Letterboxd immediately.