This will be short because I’m still tired after staying up to see the Oscars. Don’t know why I did that since this year it was pretty clear what would get best picture. I like to see the acceptance speeches, which you miss if you just read the results in the paper. Of course, watching the show made me think about what movies have been my favorites. I’ve watched many outstanding movies, great movies, some that even received an academy award, but I don’t count them my favorites if I haven’t watched them over and over again, loving them each time. For example, Saving Private Ryan and Schindler’s List were terrific, but they are too tough to watch more than once. Here, then, are some of the movies that do make the category of favorites for me:
- Without a doubt, my very favorite drama is To Kill a Mockingbird. Was there ever a more admirable character than Atticus Finch, played by Gregory Peck? For years I watched it once a year with my students at the end of our study of the novel. It is one of the few movies that does justice to the novel it is about.
- In the comedy category, two movies come to mind, Princess Bride and When Sally Met Harry. Princess Bride is hilarious all the way through, whereas only one scene in the second movie stands out, the one we all know quite well, but that one scene is enough to make me want to see the movie more than once or even twice.
- As for the best Sci-fi movie, a genre I dearly love but which doesn’t produce nearly enough excellent entries, the original Star Wars movie wins out for me. I remember watching it at the Cape Cod Mall when it opened in 1977. We had two kids then, and the youngest was two and fell asleep in my arms before the movie started and slept right through it. The movie was nothing less than the classic struggle between good and evil, with young Luke Skywalker taking on the role of David against Darth Vader’s Goliath. Characters, both the leading ones and minor ones, we’re fascinating, making me marvel at the imagination that created them.
- Finally, in the category of scary movies, my two favorites are Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds and Psycho. The suspense in both of those is so intense that I can feel my heart palpitate. Even when I know what’s coming, my heart races again and again.
Those are a few of my all-time favorites. What are yours?