Seven Favorite Movies

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I’ve decided I’m going to write this post after feeling challenged by this youtube video from Shmoes Know, one of my favorite movie-related youtube channels.  Which should be another list.

The idea of writing a list of my top seven movies is horrifying to me.  But it’s also an oddly exciting challenge.  But I’m sure I can’t do it without regret and self-blame (because of those poor sad rejected favorites- how will they forgive me?!)

You know I love making lists, right? Yes, I know it’s the whole point of this blog, but I’m just checking.  I have an Excel spreadsheet of movie ratings.  From 1-5.  It’s been a while since I went through and edited to reflect current preferences, but as it stands now, there are 81 ‘5-star’ movies and 312 ‘4-star’ movies.

So here it goes, my top seven, in no particular order.

  1. Rear Window, 1954: Rear Window was the movie that really got me into movies. I also have an all-encompassing love of Hitchcock (and of Grace Kelly, and of Jimmy Stewart).  If I had to only watch one Hitchcock ever again I would be miserable I would choose this one.  Spoiler spoiler spoiler: That part where Thorwald realizes he’s being watched… he looks out the window and locks eyes with the viewer (who has the perspective of Stewart’s binoculars). Chilling.
  2. Spirited Away, 2001: Odd that this has ended up on my favorites list.  i first saw it in the theater when I was in FIRST GRADE.  I was also a very sensitive first grader (I’m now a very sensitive 16th grader).  And I had been told I was going to see some movie with Piglet in it.  And Winnie the Pooh.  I also ended up with a soda that exploded in my lap.  It was a rough day.  Anyway, this film was terrifying.  Her parents are turned into pigs and she’s captured by semi-vengeful semi-murderous spirits.  After maybe a decade (or… maybe longer) I watched it again and fell in love.  What had been nightmare became fantasy.  It’s gorgeous in every way.
  3. The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly, 1966: It’s tough to fall in love with Clint Eastwood and then realize he’s currently 80 and yelling at an imaginary Obama’s chair (but he does have a similarly amazingly attractive son, so’s you know).  This movie is funny, adventurous, beautifully atmospheric, philosophical, exciting.  Ennio Morricone’s soundtrack is superb.  There’s so much attitude to this film.
  4. House of Flying Daggers, 2004: A bit painful to admit that I prefer this to Crouching Tiger, but I have to own up to it.  There are definite similarities, but Crouching Tiger is grungier.  There are more beautiful costumes here, a bit more focus on the female characters, and fight scenes like THIS.  Ziyi Zhang is, as always, incredible.
  5. Gone With the Wind, 1939: Epic, devastating, romantic (but not exactly?).  The cast is amazing, I love that they toasted the King Kong Manhattan set to get the scenes of Georgia burning.  It’s both a Civil War period drama and a seriously 1939 period piece.
  6. Moonrise Kingdom, 2012: Le Temps de l’Amour is part of the soundtrack.  The film is hysterical.  Vintage-y summer camp in feel, and like Wes Anderson films in general, extremely aesthetic.  Great acting from a few great names and a few unfamiliar faces.  A complete flight of the imagination.  Beetle earrings, a cat… and, oh yes… What kind of bird are you?
  7. Haha, just kidding.  I’m leaving 7 blank so all of the other movies in the world don’t feel that I’m slighting them. Aside to every other movie: “Don’t worry, it definitely would have been you, the real favorite.  Best for last.”

Upset by my decision to not pick a final seventh movie?
In the immortal words of Rhett Butler: “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.”

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