Sunday, September 03, 2006

Friday Night at the Movies (on Sunday night)

Susanne at Living to Tell the Story mentioned that Barb at Chelsea Morning had linked to Mommie Dearest who was hosting a movie review of sorts, inviting us all to post our top 5 all-time favorite movies. I do love a good movie, and am eager to see what movies others recommend, so I'm all over this one. Although it's next to impossible to stop at just five, since I don't BUY a lot of movies, I've narrowed it down to five I've either bought or would like to buy (reviews complements of Netflix):

1. The Princess Bride. Yep, I own it, and have watched it, along with every single minute of bonus footage, several times over. In this enchantingly cracked fairy tale, the beautiful Princess Buttercup (Robin Wright Penn) and the dashing Wesley (Cary Elwes) must overcome staggering odds to find happiness. Giants, swordsmen, six-fingered counts, murderous princes, Sicilians, pirates, rodents of unusual size and even death cannot stop true love from triumphing. Mandy Patinkin and Andre the Giant costar in this modern classic.

2. Finding Forrester. I only saw this once but it was one of those rare movies that actually evoked tears in me. It's on my list to buy. I think the reason I love it is twofold: first, it's about a writer and second, it's about a young man's struggle to rise above his circumstances and much of the story takes place in the classroom - a place near and dear to my heart. Reared in the Bronx projects, high school basketball star Jamal Wallace (Rob Brown) harbors a passion not usually associated with jocks: He's obsessed with reading and writing. Realizing Wallace's exceptional writing talent, William Forrester (Sean Connery), an award-winning novelist turned recluse, decides to mentor the youngster. Wallace and Forrester soon find that a common passion can forge an uncommon bond. (One more comment - I'm embarrassed to divulge what an effect this movie had on me. Being the reader I am, I immediately got on the internet to find out more about William Forrester. Um, uh, duh - fictional character. I was so disappointed!)

3. Sense & Sensibility. Another Jane Austen classic I am ashamed to admit I never read. When my husband and I were dating, we saw this together at the cheapo theater and I was so impressed that he sat through a chick flick. (Do you think he was doing it to impress me?) We both got a kick out of the "elusive Mrs. P" and he still has a note in his wallet from me, counting down the days to when I would become "Mrs. P!" This tale of 19th century etiquette and ethics chronicles the troubles and triumphs of the marriage-minded Dashwood sisters: sensible Elinor (Emma Thompson) and romantic Marianne (Kate Winslet)

4. Beaches. My sister and I watched this when we shared an apartment as schoolteachers. When we weren't attending a HS basketball game, you could find us curled up on our secondhand sofa with Chi-chi's salsa, a bag of oreos and a good flick. We both bawled our silly eyes out over this one. And I still think Bette Midler is a great actress. Cecilia (Bette Midler) and Hillary (Barbara Hershey) have a lifelong friendship that time and physical distance can't touch. Although Hillary is an unprepossessing W.A.S.P and Cecilia's an aspiring Jewish nightclub singer, what began as an improbable friendship on the Atlantic City boardwalk becomes an unbreakable bond that's tested repeatedly -- especially when the chips are down and Hershey faces the ultimate battle.

5. Bandits. I think this was one of the funniest, cleverest movies I've ever seen. Bruce Willis, Billy Bob Thornton and Cate Blanchett were just hilarious together. I think we saw this three times in about as many months. Bank robbers Bruce Willis and Billy Bob Thornton battle over the affections of a woman (Cate Blanchett) they kidnap before one of their big heists. Adding insult to injury, they then force a TV show host to cover their 15 minutes of fame while they go on a bank-robbing spree -- Blanchett in tow -- and gain notoriety as "The Sleepover Bandits."

6. (Can I sneak one more in here?) The Man Who Knew Too Little. Next to Groundhog Day, this is probably my favorite Bill Murray movie, and it's one of those safe movies that's nice to have on hand when you're not sure of your company's preference. Iowa video-store clerk Wallace Ritchie (Bill Murray) opts to celebrate his birthday with younger brother James (Peter Gallagher). But James, an aggressive businessman, has an important dinner meeting planned. He gets rid of Wallace by giving him a ticket to the Theatre of Life, an audience-participation show where an unfortunate case of mistaken identity leads Wallace into -- among other things -- a web of espionage.

If you decide to share some of your favorites, head on over to Mommie Dearest and leave a link. I'll be over to check it out post haste!


Mommy Dearest said...

Our family really loves The Princess Bride! There are so many great quotes. I, too, was really impressed with Finding Forrester. We watched it with our oldest son (now 20); I was hoping it would inspire him to become educated!

Susanne said...

I loved Finding Forrester. I haven't seen it in so long that I think I'll go rent it tomorrow! Thanks for the reminder! Sense and Sensibility, also enjoyable. The others I haven't seen. I'll have to add them to my list for cold winter movie weekends!

Jennifer said...

Oooh--I think that I will do that. Thanks for the idea.

Love your pics--I also have only seen FF once, but loved it, and I've never seen that Bill Murray movie, but dh and I do love him. I'm going to think on this, and then post (because in your post below you specifically asked about chick flicks. . . . )

Dianne said...

I tried to edit this post to say "reviews complements of Netflix" but was having probs. so consider it said now!