Friday, June 29, 2007

Top Five Movies

Frank Sirmarco tagged me and said I had to list my top five movies. Being a total movie freak, this could take me a long time to determine. But being whimsical by nature, I'm going to list the top five movies that pop into my head when I think "favorite movies." It's kind of like party shuffle on the iTunes, only we're using my brain as a randomizer. Here we go:

I love this movie. Here are a couple of girls who were misfits in high school but have turned things around for themselves somewhat since. When they learn their high school reunion is imminent, they go on a quest for a life makeover, which ends up causing a rift between them. But, as with most comedies, they turn everything around for the better by the end. This movie has everything my little girl heart wants in a movie: redemption, vindication, and a happy ending. Also, these two lovely girls, while not being super geniuses, have a lot of smarts and use what they have to their advantage. I quote them often, especially when someone compliments me. I usually tilt my head, open my eyes in wonder and respond, "I know!"

No one will argue with me that this is a great movie. Some may argue with my rational, however. I believe what makes this movie is not the love story, not the struggle for freedom, not the patriotic themes, but rather Captain Renault. I want to be him. If I can't be him, I want to go shopping with him. This is a diplomatic man who appears to have an interest in no one but himself. Of course, he grudgingly does the right thing when pressed. What I like most about him is his detached wit and lack of shame. If you haven't seen this movie (and shame on you), see it if only to hear some of his quips, such as...
Captain Renault: Rick, there are many exit visas sold in this café, but we know that you've never sold one. That is the reason we permit you to remain open.
Rick: Oh? I thought it was because I let you win at roulette.
Captain Renault: That is another reason.

Rick: How can you close me up? On what grounds?
Captain Renault: I'm shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here! [a croupier hands Renault a pile of money]
Croupier: Your winnings, sir.
Captain Renault: [sotto voce] Oh, thank you very much. [aloud]
Captain Renault: Everybody out at once!

If you're one for enjoying verbal banter and sparring, then this is your movie. This is a chick flick with balls. This movie is filled with wonderful dialogue and the atmosphere crackles with the sexual tension between the four main characters. Besides, who couldn't love a movie with the likes of Katherine Hepburn, Cary Grant, and Jimmy Stewart in it? It's sweet, and smart, and saucy. I highly recommend it.

In this third movie in the Harry Potter series, the producers went with an unlikely and unique director: Alfonso Cuaron. This man brought an edge to the Harry Potter films as the children became adolescents. He made this movie darker and full of black humor and physicality. But while it was creepy, it was also very sympathetic to Harry's character. In this film, we get to witness Harry having a very rare moment of joy as he rides Buckbeak, the hippogriff, over the grounds of Hogwarts, exhilarated. Also, he seems to be getting closer to having a circle of people in his life he can love and trust such as Professor Lupin and Serius Black. Harry seems much less alone in this episode and it feels good to watch him soak it up. Also, there's time travel, which almost always pushes a movie up in my list of favorites.

This movie is sort of an Alice falling through the looking glass movie. Only this time it's Roberta and she is falling into the New York City club scene as opposed to Wonderland. Also, Aiden Quinn is in this movie at his hottest, I would say. I love the grittiness of Susan's life and the way Roberta falls into it. It was filmed when Madonna was not only still American, but also still a person, and a charming one at that. The cast is great, the story well done, the soundtrack was wonderful. What's not to love?
I'd love to hear what your top five are and I specifically tag, Pezda, Evil Genius, Big Orange, and Dirty.


  1. I agree with No. 2. everything else is either a wankathon or a snoozefest.

  2. Only you could speak with authority on the subject of "wankathon". What's in your top 5?


  3. I've seen #1 and #5 and found some things to like about them, but can't fully embrace them. I haven't seen the others. Yes, yes, I know. I've never seen "Casablanca," I must be some kind of mutant.

  4. Claude Rains is magnificent as Captain Renault, as is Peter Lorre as Ugarte. Love this movie, but only watch it when I'm depressed.

    Philadelphia Story is incredible, too.

    But you're going to chide me for putting Goodfellas at #1? Yikes!

  5. Romy & Michelle is Goodfellahs for girls. And besides, my list is not ranked; it's random.

  6. Of course, none of them star Meg Ryan. I wouldn't expect you to have seen them.

  7. The Philadelphia Story is a great movie, but it is red's favorite. It is hard to decide whether the ex-girlfriend stigma overshadows the film or not. And I love Carey Grant. In my mind, I am Cary Grant.

  8. In my mind Cary Grant is president and the world has been overrun by genetically altered prairie dogs.

    Oh, great picks, I've never seen #3, and it's been so long since I've seen #5 that it's like I've never seen it.

  9. I refuse to play the "favorite movie" game because I have so many favorite movies that I wouldn't remember if I neglected to mention one that really should be in the top 5. I like all the ones you mention except that I've never caught the Harry Potter fever.

  10. If only Cary had been in Romy & Michelle, a lot more people would have enjoyed it! I laughed and especially enjoy them dancing together at the start.

  11. Casablance is my fav of favs. Love the Bogey!

    About the Germans having a complete dossier on him (reading):
    "Are my eyes really brown?"

    When asked what nationality he is:
    "I'm a drunkard."

    And Captain Renault when learning the letters of transit were hidden in Sam's piano:
    "Serves me right for not being musical."

    I could go on and on, but I won't.

  12. I'm on it this week. I have to think about it...I forgot about #1...that was totally friend Sally and I before we got married.

  13. Well, as EG points out, #3 is my absolute favorite. It's a big part of the reason I go by Red. (CG's first line to KH: "Hey, Red, you look in the pink!" *swoon*)

    #2 is also fantastic, and I always say I love _Casablanca_ because it's FUNNY! Another great Claude Rains line: "How extravagant you are; throwing away women like that. Someday they may be scarce!"

    To round out my top 5, also on party shuffle, let's say _It Happened One Night_, _A Few Good Men_, and _The Cutting Edge_.

    I've never seen your #5, but based on your other picks, I'm putting it on my Netflix queue now.

  14. Flannery,

    I have dutifully obeyed.


    So in your mind I am President and you are an underling to bioengineered marmots?


    You're an unholy mess of a girl. But I mean that in the nicest possible way.