Greetings, my cinematically savvy friends! Thanks so much for giving me all your suggestions for classic movies in the comments to the last post. Man oh man you guys came through with some GREAT lists and my Netflix queue is quaking under the weight of its newly expanded duties.
Here’s a little more about what I’m doing: I recently realized that there are just a TON of movies out there that people consider classics — ones everyone has seen or should have seen — that I have managed to miss out on over the years. While I have seen every single cookie-cutter romantic comedy released in the last fifteen years and probably every movie that came out on VHS in 1997, the year I worked at a video store, I still had managed not to see such classics as the ones listed below — until now!
So I chatted with some friends at trivia and then called out for suggestions here and it looks like I have my work cut out for me. I have added all the suggestions I haven’t seen yet to my queue and will be working my way through as I can, and blogging about it.
Please don’t be sad if I don’t get to your suggestions right away. There are just so many and I’ll be going by my whims and fancies, depending on what kind of thing I’m in the mood for. So, like, musicals and animated movies may get de-prioritized since I rarely enjoy those genres. (Notable exceptions are few, but include The Triplets of Belleville and My Neighbor Totoro in animation and The Sound of Music and anything Joss Whedon has done in musicals.)
So! Here are the first five new-to-me classics I have seen, and some brief thoughts on them. Please know that I won’t be offering any academic-type analyses, just commenting in my rather pedestrian fashion on whether I enjoyed them, etc. This ain’t no scholarly project!
Annie Hall Oh man, I loved this one. Why did I wait so long to see it? The fashion, the meta-commentary when Woody addressed the camera, the scene with the lobsters (and the second-attempt lobster scene!) were all fantastic. The only thing that I didn’t love was seeing Diane Keaton sing. Over all I am now a devoted fan of this movie.
The Natural I do love a good baseball movie and this one was pretty good, but I don’t love it as much as Bull Durham. It was a little too serious, I think. I can’t complain about young Redford, though.
Citizen Kane I don’t know why this one is always “ranked” “higher” than Casablanca in those AFI lists of great films. It is in no way better than Casablanca. I had high hopes for this but was disappointed. The successful businessman who is sad inside? Please. Sorry, film lovers!
The Godfather Did y’all know that this movie is THREE HOURS LONG? Yeah, I did not know that until like an hour into it, when I was thinking to myself, “How interesting that this entire movie takes place at a wedding; I didn’t realize that,” and then I checked how much time was remaining and saw that I still had over two more hours to go. At that point I think I mentally gave up. The only two male characters I could reliably identify onscreen were Vito and Michael. Everyone else looked alike. I definitely thought Sonny and Carlo were the same person for most of the movie. I kept dozing off again and again. The plot, the motivations, the characters, the Italian dialogue with no subtitles — it was all just utterly incomprehensible to me. Hated it. And no, I don’t plan on giving it another try nor do I plan to try the sequels. Before I even put the DVD into the player it felt like this was a homework assignment and I don’t want to repeat that feeling in what is meant to be a FUN project. Not to get all defensive or anything but my male friends are pretty indignant about this one.
Rocky Most excellent! If you follow me on Twitter you probably saw my gleeful tweets as I was watching this last night. I loved Rocky’s jaunty little hat and his glasses and Adrian and her cool glasses and the overall adorableness of them together. And I’m sorry but I can’t get over the turtles named Cuff and Link! I also love a good sports movie with training montages and an underdog to root for (see also: The Karate Kid and the aforementioned Bull Durham). This hit plenty of my movie enjoyment buttons: good fashion, a love story, cute animals, and sports training montages. Win!
All righty friends, this has been your Movie Project Update! I am off to watch Monsoon Wedding on Netflix Instant Play. I thought I had seen that one but I definitely have not. Indian classic!