Here are a few more first movies, culled from the Facebook responses to that last post about first movies:
--Where's Poppa? (also titled Going Ape, D. Carl Reiner, 1970) is one of the films I remember (along with Slap Shot, Mother, Jugs and Speed and Blue Collar) playing over and over and over on Home Box Office back in the early converter-box days. And young David was driven to bad dreams by the edited, "happy ending" version of this film-- the original version (which is intact on the DVD) has the darkest, most twisted ending of any comedy since Dr. Strangelove.
Toby (California): Yellow Submarine. At age five I thought the Blue Meanies were super cool.
Chris (Washington State): The Apple Dumpling Gang.
Caroline (California): I have a terrible memory of a Western where a stagecoach with a set of four white horses went over a cliff. It drove me screaming and crying from the theater. But the first full-length one I really remember was Help! at the drive-in. Wore my footie PJs.
Lynn (California): Chitty Chitty Bang Bang was the first movie I saw at a drive-in (with my parents). Not sure if that was the first one ever although it might be.
-- Which is quite an insight. Memory is a mercurial, hit-or-miss thing before age 5. They can be constructed out of disparate experiences or influenced by hearsay. Makes sense that a lot of what we "remember" are actually things told to us by older relatives from which we have stitched together into real-seeming, but fake, memories.
The developed ability in childhood to stitch together a received narrative into something you replay half a lifetime later says quite a lot about the power of cinema and remarkable qualities of the human mind.
And finally, the antidote to the charm of the "first movie ever" memory:
Cova Lee (California) Fantasia… It's still on my all-time most hated list! That would a hatred stemming from the psychological torture of being forced to sit through the most boring movie ever made more times than I can count! The last time being my 12th birthday with a bunch of my friends… so not cool because Grease was playing in the theatre next door and of course my father caught us trying to sneak into that instead!