1. Tampopo (1985)–Best postmodern film; I have seen this movie at least 20 times and everytime I find something I didn’t notice before, EVERYTIME.
2. Casablanca (1942)–Cynical, realistic, patriotic, all in one! And Bogart and Bergman to boot.
3. Pulp Fiction (1994)–Thoughtfully violent, violently thoughtful; best film for Jackson and Travolta.
4. Patton (1970)–The classic war movie, George C. Scott rocks.
5. The Sound of Music (1965)–don’t laugh, Julie Andrews has a great voice, and I like musicals.
6. To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)–best movie about race (sorry Spike), Gregory Peck’s best flick.
7. The Shawshank Redemption (1994)–best Stephen King adaptation, and best never-say-die message.
8. Field of Dreams (1989)–I like baseball and corn; only drawback is that the character Terence Mann is really J.D. Salinger (Catcher in the Rye, as if you didn’t know) in the novel Shoeless Joe by W.P. Kinsella.
9. Godzilla (1954)/Them (1954) –tie. Both are great anti-nuclear bomb films; Godzilla attacks Tokyo, giant ants take on LA.
10. White Christmas (1954)–Did I mention I like musicals and corn?
Breakdown: By Era: 90s-2, 80s-2, 70s-1, 60s-2, 50s-2, 40s-1 (pretty good distribution). Print: Color-7, B/W-3 (not bad given the time frame). Genre: Drama-6, comedy-0, musical-2, foreign-1, science fiction-1 (I’m counting Godizilla and Them as one;). Although Tampopo and White Christmas may be considered comedies, they are commonly categorized as I have done it. Some comedies rate as “great”–“Some Like it Hot” being the best example–they just didn’t make the top ten.
I mentioned in the previous post the site for movielens where participants rank movies from 1 (awful) to 3 (ok) to 5 (must see). Not that it matters to anyone, but I thought i’d lay down my basic guidelines.
1 is for movies that I hate with a passion, like Spaceballs (or any Mel Brooks movie from History of the World on) and Disney’s Aristocats for spreading their racial profiling techniques to young children through cats.
2 is for movies that are I regret seeing. These include predictable stinkers like Jaws 2, Aliens 3, Rocky IV, Star Trek VI and most other sequels, as well as some that many would find good, but I found unintersting to me, such as Pretty in Pink (inane 80s fluff), the Shining (bad Stephen King adaptation), Mars Attack (just stupid), and Pretty Women (I am not a Julia Roberts fan).
3 is the rank I give to most movies. They were ok. I saw them, I have no major complaints: from Cool Hand Luke to Ramancing the Stone to Training Days. But none of these movies I would not see again, unless I was completely bored or under threat of death–which are pretty muchthe same to me, but it has to be on TV, I will not rent the video.
4 is the rank I give to movies that I would see again. It had to somehow pique my interest in any of many different ways, such as the gender-bender Victor/Victoria (Julie Andrews), the pathos through science fiction/horro in Edward Scissorhands, the action of Raiders of the Lost Ark, and the adrenalin rush of Aahnolds best flick, The Predator (better than T1 and T2 combined). I will see them on TV or even rent the video.
5 is for the classics, and these I will see over and over, so much so that I will even buy the DVD, although I don’t have all of them yet. These include the titles above but also others such as Close Encounter of the Third Kind and The Day the Earth Stoo Still (intelligent use of special effects), Beauty and the Beast (first movie to bring teard in my adult eyes), the Natural (baseball, good adaptation of Mullamad), Jaws (first movie to scare me without using supernatural beings), Bonnie and Clyde (for being 60s cool), and Roman Holiday (for teaching me never to take myself too seriously). And if you’re wondering there are a few J flicks on this list as well, incuding Seven Samurai, Ballad of Narayama (with Ogata Ken), Ran, and Woman in the Dunes.