Movie Madness

Dick, over at Og’s place, comments about his “ten most favorite movies”. This is something almost everyone has an opinion on. And I am no exception.
So in no particular order, as they constantly jockey for position in the stagnated backwaters of my mind, are my top ten favs.
Bogart, Bergman, Rains, Lorrie, Greenstreet … the list of of solid performances is long. The cinematography. The “signature song”. The serendipitous coming together of all this, as almost an afterthought. If not the greatest movie of all time, a worthy contender for said title.
The Quiet Man
Wayne and O’Hara in a true labor of love, directed by John Ford. Much like Casablanca, this film was a perfect mix of cast, director, script, and location. They really don’t make em like this anymore … and more’s the pity
Blazing Saddles
Although I love Mel Brooks “The Producers” (1968), “Blazing Saddles” IMHO, is his best picture. Nothing is sacred, and nothing is held back, in a movie which sadly could not be made in today’s politically correct climate. This is one time when I wish Brooks could find it in himself to “top” this beauty, find some one with enough coin to back production and distribution, and set the pc crowd back on it’s ear. I bet he would make more money then he would know what to do with.
Kevin Smith, Jay & Silent Bob, George Carlin … funny, profane, I liked it.
12 O’clock High
This has always been one of my favorite “WWII films”, even after the Navy decided to use it as a “tool” in it’s “LMET” (Leadership/Management Enlisted Training) course. And amazingly enough, the Quin/Martin TV production of the same name, was equally good.
This was the only film my father took me and my brothers to see. It is a credit to George C. Scott’s acting ability, that despite his personal politics being diametrically opposed to those of his character, he does an outstanding job of portraying who many consider to be the greatest General of World War II.
Yes, the second Wayne film to make the list. It also, not surprisingly, co-stars Maureen O’Hara. A western version of “The Taming of The Shrew”, it also was a vehicle for showcasing John Wayne’s political philosophy. A most enjoyable bit of entertainment.
The Maltese Falcon/The Big Sleep
Two classic detective stories by two giants of the genre, Chandler and Hammett. With Bogart bringing Philip Marlow and Sam Spade to the screen. No one does it better. And I doubt, these days, that anyone could. Add two stunning leading ladies (Bacall and Astor) “shaken not stirred”, the result are two movies “tied” in my top ten list.
The High & The Mighty
Hmmm … is there a trend developing here with John Wayne films? This adaptation of an Ernest K. Gann novel (he also wrote the screen play) is recognized as the standard against which all other “aircraft/airport disaster films” are rated. Indeed this was the one that started it all. They really don’t get better then this. (That I used to maintain the military version of the aircraft in this film … well that’s just icing on the cake.)
The Best Years of Our Lives
The film referred to as the quintessential “vet returning / country adjusting to a ‘return to normalcy’, after World War II”. As with most of the others above, the casting, direction, and ultimate on-screen chemistry/interaction of all the characters, makes this a classic.
Well, there are the top ten. But who can stop there? So here are the runners up “in no particular order”;
The Ten Commandments
King of Kings
Robin Hood
North by Northwest
It’s A Wonderful Life
A Christmas Carol

All of these are classics in their own right. But for personal tastes and preference, they very well might be on someone’s top ten list. Feel free to list your favorites in the comments (or on your site). Don’t forget to save me a seat, a large beverage, and plenty of popcorn.
And finally a big h/t to Dick, for starting all this in motion!


Filed under Random Thoughts

6 responses to “Movie Madness

  1. Dick

    Damn nice list. I always liked 12 O’clock High, but was never a fan of Patton. God knows I should be, being a grunt.

  2. One loved or hated the man, there was no middle ground, at least according to my Great Uncle Bill. He served in Patton’s Third Army during the war.
    The man was no saint by any stretch of the imagination. Still, his military prowess, the German High Command had the greatest respect for his abilities, was an asset even “Ike” could little afford not to use.
    As to your opinion of the man, nosy bastard that I am, I would be interested to hear how you arrived at same. As for my own branch of service … sheesh I know of at least two former Naval Officers, who are not worth the powder to blow to hell. And a third who is in need of being placed permanently on R&R IRT his political aspirations.
    It would be nice, before I shuffle off this mortal coil, to have had a Navy man serve with honor in the capacity of Commander in Chief.

  3. og

    Nice. I like “mcLintock” myself an awful lot.

  4. McLintock has to be one of the most enjoyable films to watch. It looks, from start to finish, like they all were having a grand old time!
    And btw, thank you both for stopping by!! The whiskey in on the shelf to the left, the cigars, in the humidor on the table to the right!

  5. Dick

    Just the movie, Guy. I have always had a soft spot for the General.

  6. I agree the movie was not without it’s blemishes (and what movie isn’t) most notable (to me) was Patton didn’t even remotely sound like Scott. In fact, his voice was somewhat high and squeaky, rather out of place with his manner and physique.

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