This week will be a departure from the usual Your Turn format. I’m not sharing an email from a reader but instead asking y’all to help me out with a future column (or series of columns, depending on the number of responses I get) about the performances you cherish.

A former editor of mine once initiated a “Stop-Down” discussion at an email group in which we both participated. The question was this: “What movie — when you flip to it on TV — makes you stop down and just watch it, even if it’s halfway over?”

For me, that’d be anything like Stick It, The Princess Bride, Rent, The Italian Job, Joe vs. the Volcano, Grosse Pointe Blank, Office Space, Young Frankenstein, Stomp the Yard, The Apartment, Con Air, Fletch, This Is Spinal Tap, or The Sure Thing. Never fails. Any of those movies will cause all “flipping channels” to STOP and the remote to be put DOWN.

Why these films? Well, I’ll share my reasons behind my stop-down movies (and TV shows — I want to know about your TV shows too — mine include Law & Order, Friends, Family Guy, Newsradio, Soap, Beverly Hills 90210, Boomtown, almost any “judge” show — especially The People’s Court or Judge Mathis, 30 Days, or The Daily Show) when I run the column you’re going to help me create.

What are YOUR stop-down films and TV shows? And, most importantly, WHY? Is it the story? The editing? The directing? Special effects? Delightful memories of what your life was like back when you first experienced it? Or are you crazy in love with the acting? How great are the actors? What is it that makes me stop what I’m doing — no matter what it might be — in order to consume some Seth Green goodness? Why is it that Taye Diggs shows up on my screen and time just stops, entirely?

What does it for you? And why? What are your “great performances” and “stop-downs”? I think knowing the answers to these questions might open a great bit of dialogue about how YOU can move your audiences in the same way. Let me hear from y’all! That’s my email address, just below. Thanks!

Bonnie Gillespie is living her dreams by helping others figure out how to live theirs. Wanna work with Bon? Start here. Thanks!

Originally published by Actors Access at Please support the many wonderful resources provided by the Breakdown Services family. This posting is the author’s personal archive.

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