November 8, 2012

Top Ten Thursday #6


This is adapted from Top Ten Tuesday, an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

Top Ten Favorite Movies of All Time




1. The Princess Bride - Screenwriter William Goldman's novel The Princess Bride earned its own loyal audience on the strength of its narrative voice and its gently satirical, hyperbolic spin on swashbuckled adventure that seemed almost purely literary. For all its derring-do and vivid over-the-top characters, the book's joy was dictated as much by the deadpan tone of its narrator and a winking acknowledgement of the clichés being sent up. Miraculously, director Rob Reiner and Goldman himself managed to visualize this romantic fable while keeping that external voice largely intact: using a storytelling framework, avuncular Grandpa (Peter Falk) gradually seduces his skeptical grandson (Fred Savage) into the absurd, irresistible melodrama of the title story. And what a story: a lowly stable boy, Westley (Cary Elwes), pledges his love to the beautiful Buttercup (Robin Wright), only to be abducted and reportedly killed by pirates while Buttercup is betrothed to the evil Prince Humperdinck. Even as Buttercup herself is kidnapped by a giant, a scheming criminal mastermind, and a master Spanish swordsman, a mysterious masked pirate (could it be Westley?) follows in pursuit. As they sail toward the Cliffs of Insanity... The wild and woolly arcs of the story, the sudden twists of fate, and, above all, the cartoon-scaled characters all work because of Goldman's very funny script, Reiner's confident direction, and a terrific cast. Elwes and Wright, both sporting their best English accents, juggle romantic fervor and physical slapstick effortlessly, while supporting roles boast Mandy Patinkin (the swordsman Inigo Montoya), Wallace Shawn (the incredulous schemer Vizzini), and Christopher Guest (evil Count Rugen) with brief but funny cameos from Billy Crystal, Carol Kane, and Peter Cook.

2. A Bronx Tale - In Robert De Niro's stunning directorial debut, a devoted father battles a local crime boss for the life of his son. Growing up on the racially divided mean streets of 1960s New York, 11-year-old Italian-American Calogero, known as "C," idolizes sophisticated local mob boss Sonny (Chazz Palminteri), despite stern warnings from his working-class father (Robert De Niro). When "C" gets older and defies his dad in order to join Sonny's dangerous gang, he finds that life is never black and white. Funny, touching and explosively honest, A Bronx Tale is a provocative coming-of-age story you won't soon forget.

3. Splash - Don't let this spectacular 20th Anniversary Collector's Edition be the one that got away! Academy Award(R) winner Tom Hanks (1994 Best Actor, FORREST GUMP) stars as Allen Bauer, a workaholic who's convinced he can't fall in love. That is, until he's mysteriously rescued at sea by the mermaid of his dreams! Soon Allen and Madison (Daryl Hannah, KILL BILL) are swept away by hilarious and heartwarming romance. Academy Award(R) winner Ron Howard (2001 Best Director, A BEAUTIFUL MIND) directs a star-studded cast, including Eugene Levy (BRINGING DOWN THE HOUSE, AMERICAN PIE), and hilarious John Candy (HOME ALONE) in a magical tale that now includes all-new bonus features.

4. My Cousin Vinny - Two carefree pals (Ralph Macchio and Mitchell Whitfield) traveling through Alabama are mistakenly arrested, and charged with murder. Fortunately, one of them has a cousin who's a lawyer - Vincent Gambini (Joe Pesci, Lethal Weapon 3, Home Alone), a former auto mechanic from Brooklyn who just passed his bar exam after his sixth try. Vinny's never been in court - or in Alabama - and when he arrives with his leather-clad girlfriend (Marisa Tomei in her OscarÂ(r) winning Supporting Actress performance), to try his first case, it's a real shock - for him and the Deep South!

5. The Batman Begins Trilogy - Batman Begins:

Batman Begins explores the origins of the Batman legend and the Dark Knight's emergence as a force for good in Gotham. In the wake of his parents' murder, disillusioned industrial heir Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale) travels the world seeking the means to fight injustice and turn fear against those who prey on the fearful. He returns to Gotham and unveils his alter-ego: Batman, a masked crusader who uses his strength, intellect and an array of high tech deceptions to fight the sinister forces that threaten the city.

The Dark Knight:

The follow-up to Batman Begins, The Dark Knight reunites director Christopher Nolan and star Christian Bale, who reprises the role of Batman/Bruce Wayne in his continuing war on crime. With the help of Lt. Jim Gordon and District Attorney Harvey Dent, Batman sets out to destroy organized crime in Gotham for good. The triumvirate proves effective, but soon find themselves prey to a rising criminal mastermind known as The Joker, who thrusts Gotham into anarchy and forces Batman closer to crossing the fine line between hero and vigilante. Heath Ledger stars as archvillain The Joker, and Aaron Eckhart plays Dent. Maggie Gyllenhaal joins the cast as Rachel Dawes. Returning from Batman Begins are Gary Oldman as Gordon, Michael Caine as Alfred and Morgan Freeman as Lucius Fox.

The Dark Knight Rises:

It has been eight years since Batman vanished into the night, turning, in that instant, from hero to fugitive. Assuming the blame for the death of D.A. Harvey Dent, the Dark Knight sacrificed everything for what he and Commissioner Gordon both hoped was the greater good. For a time the lie worked, as criminal activity in Gotham City was crushed under the weight of the anti-crime Dent Act. But everything will change with the arrival of a cunning cat burglar with a mysterious agenda. Far more dangerous, however, is the emergence of Bane, a masked terrorist whose ruthless plans for Gotham drive Bruce out of his self-imposed exile. But even if he dons the cape and cowl again, Batman may be no match for Bane.

6. Tangled - Disney presents a new twist on one of the most hilarious and hair-raising tales ever told. Your whole family will get tangled up in the fun, excitement and adventure of this magical motion picture. When the kingdom's most wanted - and most charming - bandit Flynn Rider hides in a mysterious tower, the last thing he expects to find is Rapunzel, a spirited teen with an unlikely superpower - 70 feet of magical golden hair! Together, the unlikely duo sets off on a fantastic journey filled with surprising heroes, laughter and suspense.

7. His Girl Friday - The Front Page, Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur's classic 1928 newspaper play, has had three official film versions and contributed structural DNA to half the movies ever made about professional camaraderie and fierce love-hate friendships. Lewis Milestone's 1931 movie is well respected (Billy Wilder's 1974 version isn't), but this is one case where the remake towers brilliantined head and blocked shoulders above the original.

Howard Hawks had the inspired notion of making Hildy Johnson--the ace newsman whom demonic editor Walter Burns is trying to keep from quitting and getting married--a she instead of a he. What's more, she's not only Walter's star reporter but also his ex-wife. When Hildy (Rosalind Russell) comes to tell Walter (Cary Grant) she's leaving the newspaper business, he bamboozles her into carrying out one last assignment--a death-row interview with a little nebbish (John Qualen) convicted of killing a policeman. It sounds like a snap, but before you can say screwball comedy, the press room of the Criminal Courts Building has become ground zero for all the lunacy a jailbreak, a shooting, an impromptu suicide, a corrupt city administration, and the most Machiavellian "hero" in the American cinema can supply.

His Girl Friday is one of the, oh, five greatest dialogue comedies ever made; Hawks had his cast play it at breakneck speed, and audiences hyperventilate trying to finish with one laugh so they can do justice to the four that have accumulated in the meantime. Russell, not Hawks's first choice to play Hildy, is triumphant in the part, holding her own as "one of the guys" and creating an enduring feminist icon. Grant is a force of nature, giving a performance of such concentrated frenzy and diamond brilliance that you owe it to yourself to devote at least one viewing of the movie to watching him alone. But then you have to go back (lucky you) and watch it again for the sake of the press-room gang--Roscoe Karns, Porter Hall, Cliff Edwards, Regis Toomey, Frank Jenks, and others--the kind of ensemble work that gets character actors onto Parnassus.

8. Scream Series - SCREAM After a series of mysterious deaths befalls their small town, an offbeat group of friends led by Sidney Prescott (Campbell) become the target of a masked killer in this smash-hit "clever thriller" (The Washington Post) that launched the Scream franchise and breathed new life into the horror genre. SCREAM 2 Away at college, Sidney Prescott (Campbell) thought she'd finally put the shocking murders that shattered her life behind her... until a copycat killer begins acting out a real-life sequel. Now as history repeats itself, ambitious reporter Gale Weathers (Cox), deputy Dewey (Arquette) and other Scream survivors find themselves trapped in a terrifyingly clever plotline where no one is safe - or beyond suspicion - in this "delicious, diabolical and fun" (Rolling Stone) sequel. SCREAM 3 While Sydeny Prescott (Neve Campbell) lives in safely guaded seclusion, bodeis begin dropping around the Hollywood set of "Stab 3", the latest movies based on the gruesome Woodsboro killings. The escalating terror finally brings Sydney out of hiding, drawing her and her other survivors once again into an isidious game of horror movie mayhem that's a "suspenseful, clever and very entertaining" (NBC-TV) installment in the widly popular SCREAM franchise. SCREAM 4 In Scream 4, Sidney Prescott, now the author of a self-help book, returns home to Woodsboro on the last stop of her book tour. There she reconnects with Sheriff Dewey and Gale, who are now married, as well as her cousin Jill (played by Emma Roberts) and her Aunt Kate (Mary McDonnell). Unfortunately Sidney's appearance also brings about the return of Ghost Face, putting Sidney, Gale, and Dewey, along with Jill, her friends, and the whole town of Woodsboro in danger.

9. An Affair to Remember - In this poignant and humorous love story nominated for four Academy Awards, Cary Grant and Deborah Kerr meet on an ocean liner and fall deeply in love. Though each is engaged to someone else, they agree to meet six months later at the Empire State Building if they still feel the same way about each other. But a tragic accident prevents their rendezvous and the lover's future takes an emotional and uncertain turn.

10. Two Weeks Notice - Opposites don't just attract - they hilariously banter, fuss, feud and collide when SANDRA BULLOCK plays an activist lawyer and HUGH GRANT is the eccentric tycoon who hires her in this romantic-comedy romp from the writer of Miss Congeniality














2 comments:

  1. great list. Princess Bride is my number 1. Love that movie.

    ReplyDelete
  2. @Jenn Renee Thanks! I love the Princess Bride too. :)

    ReplyDelete

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