With the Oscars just having occurred, I thought I’d share my “best” movie choices; many of them won Oscars. They are on my list because I like them. My criteria is essentially, have I watched the movie more than once? Do I love it every time I see it? If it came back to the big screen would I pay money to go see it. If the answer to these questions is yes, then it made my Oscar list. Enjoy!
What happens when a crime boss, Angelo “Snaps” Provolone, makes his dying father a promise that he will become respectable? Mayhem ensues as “Snaps” puts his efforts into changing his life with the help of his loyal henchman and the hinderance of crying daughters. Throw in a stammering informant, an elocution coach, and police detectives, and you have the recipe for a delightful farce.
A western comedy classic, McClintock! will leave you laughing out loud. Watch the sparks fly as Mclintock (John Wayne) and his estranged wife, (Maureen O’Hara) engage in a battle of wills, only coming to a temporary, short-lived truce for their daughter’s homecoming. Throw in the conflict between the settlers, the Indians, and the town folk, and you have a recipe for mischief.
When two male musicians witness a mob hit, they take refuge disguised as members of an all-female band; and then the fun really begins. Starring Marilyn Monroe, Jack Lemmon, and Tony Curtis, this movie won Best Actor in a Leading Role and Best Director (Billy Wilder).
Arsenic and Old Lace (1944)
A drama critic learns on his wedding day that his beloved maiden aunts are homicidal maniacs, and that insanity runs in his family.
Romantic Movies – Dramas and Comedies
Roman Holiday (1953)
Starring Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn, this story of an overwhelmed, bored and sheltered princess who escapes her guardians and falls in love with an American newsman in Rome is a wonderfully funny, romantic tale.
Cary Grant stars as a government attorney who can’t seem to shake his bad fortune. Living on a houseboat, widowed and left with three unruly kids, he hires Sophia Loren as a governess; and the sparks fly in this cheeky, urbane comedy.
Father Goose (1964)
Cary Grant stars in one of his funniest roles as a boozy beachcomber sitting out WWII in peace until the Allies recruit him to be a lookout on the South Pacific isle. During an enemy attack, he answers a distress call and discovers a beautiful French schoolmarm (Leslie Caron) and her seven girl students. And so begins a hilarious battle of the sexes between the messy American, the prim mademoiselle, and seven mischievous little girls. Who will win is anybody’s guess, but you can be sure that Father Goose delivers plenty of romantic fun and adventure along the way.
Teacher’s Pet (1958)
Movie legends Clark Gable and Doris Day headline a comedy with class! Gable plays Jim Gannon, a school-of-hard-knocks newspaperman who despises journalism schools. . . until he sees who’s doing the teaching. Attracted to the lovely professor Erica Stone (Doris Day), he masquerades as a novice in her class. Soon he’s her prize pupil, all the while trying to make her his own prize. Who will come out on top?
It Happened One Night (1934)
A spoiled heiress running away from her family is helped by a man who is actually a reporter in need of a story. The rest, as they say, is history. It Happened One Night won the first Oscar grand slam, Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, and Best Actress. It won the first Oscars Columbia Pictures ever got and lifted it right into the ranks of the major studios. And it set the standard for screwball comedy.
Send Me No Flowers (1964)
A hypochondriac believes he is dying, and makes plans for his wife which she discovers and misunderstands. Stars Rock Hudson, Doris Day, and Tony Randall
The Shop Around the Corner (1940)
If you liked You’ve Got Mail with Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan, you will love this one too! Because You’ve Got Mail was based on this movie about two lonely coworkers who don’t realize that they’re actually each other’s beloved penpal.
The Quiet Man (1952)
What About Bob? (1991)
A successful psychotherapist loses his mind after one of his most dependent patients, an obsessive-compulsive neurotic, tracks him down during his family vacation.
Bill Murray drives his psychiatrist, Richard Dreyfuss, crazy on his summer vacation.
The Dream Team 1989
Four mental patients on a field trip in New York must save their caring chaperon, who ends up being taken to a hospital in a coma after accidentally witnessing a murder, before the killers can find him and finish the job.
The Princess Bride
When the lovely Buttercup is kidnapped by a ghastly gang intent on fermenting an international incident they find they are pursued by the Dread Pirate Roberts who just might be Westley, her one true love. Also after everyone is nasty Prince Humperdinck to whom Buttercup is now betrothed but who seems to care little for her continued survival. The stage is set for swordfights, monsters, and tortures – but will Grandpa be allowed to finish telling the story with all these kissy bits? (IMDb review)
Pride and Prejudice (2005)
Sparks fly when spirited Elizabeth Bennet meets single, rich, and proud Mr. Darcy. But Mr. Darcy reluctantly finds himself falling in love with a woman beneath his class. Can each overcome their own pride and prejudice?
Kate & Leopold (2001)
An English Duke from 1876 is inadvertently dragged to modern day New York where he falls for a plucky advertising executive.
Kate’s ex-boyfriend, Stuart, lives above her apartment. When Stuart goes through a gap in time and brings back a 19th century gentleman, Leopold; the old world meets new in a charming story, of being in the right place at the wrong time.
Somewhere in Time
Even more transcendental is 1980’s “Somewhere in Time,” a time-travel fantasy where playwright Christopher Reeve recognizes his soul-mate, an actress played by Jane Seymour — except she’s long dead.
His journey into the past is heart-stirring and heartbreaking. It has one of the most romantic first kisses ever. And, okay, it’s kinda drippy. Just go with it.
Disney brings postmodernism to the traditional fairy tale by displacing Amy Adams’ pure-hearted princess into the stark reality of contemporary New York. Fish out of water funnies ensue
Dead Poets Society
Prep school and uniforms and autumnal scenery in Delaware. This inspiring movie is a classic way to connect with the majestic surroundings of fall. Honing in on an unconventional teacher that helps his class connect with what they’re learning outside of their textbooks. Robin Williams gives an outstanding lesson in bringing what we learn to life. And with his recent passing, this is a great way to look back on his emotionally moving career.