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On 3/17/2017 at 5:29 PM, timschochet said:

Yep. It's even in the title. "Favorite".

If I were ranking the BEST films of all time (which I am not at all qualified to do,) I would probably end up including some movies in my top 10 that aren't anywhere on this list: such as:  

Citizen Kane

8 1/2

2001: A Space Odyssey

Other movies that are not on this list but would have to be on that one, in no particular order:

Sunset Boulevard

The Seventh Seal

Gone With the Wind

The Wizard of Oz

Casablanca

To Kill A Mockingbird

Psycho

Vertigo

Rear Window

Persona

The Grand Illusion

City Lights

The Graduate

 

 

 

:wub:

 

I don't know why you won't admit to loving this one.

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10. Cabaret (1972)

Directed by: Bob Fosse

Starring: Liza Minelli, Michael York, Joel Grey

My top ten films are going to involve longer write-ups.

Although I am a huge fan of the Broadway musical, I don't generally like their adaptions to the big screen. Something usually is missing- even films that a lot of Broadway fans love, like Chicago or My Fair Lady, I only like. Obviously, Cabaret is an exception to that rule. There are several reasons why:

First off is that, with only one exceptions, all of the songs in this musical are onstage, part of the Cabaret show, and are not directly incidental to the plot. They are, in a sense, intermissions to the story of Christopher Isherwood's life in Weimar Germany. (Michael York plays Brian Roberts, heavily based on the gay, Communist Isherwood.) The exception is of course "Tomorrow Belongs to Me", which has got to be one of the most chilling scenes ever produced on film, in which Hitler Youth sing beautifully about the rise of the Nazi Party. In this one scene, Fosse captures brilliantly the lure of fascism as a return to old values, just as he brilliantly captures the growing anti-Semitism in the ballad "If You Could See Her" (in which the MC is comically in love with a gorilla, only to reveal that the gorilla is Jewish at the end of the song.) 

There is more. The Weimar era featured German Expressionism, one of the most pivotal art movements of the 20th century, featuring painters such as George Grosz and Otto Dix (later banned by Joseph Goebbels as "Decadent Art") films such as Metropolis, and architecture like the Bauhaus movement. Bob Fosse takes all these and imitates them in his camera work and costumes, particularly in the nightclub: his camera shots are direct copies of Grosz paintings from the era (and no, I'm no art expert; but my wife was an art major at UCLA and she exposed me to "Decadent Art" along with an exhibit several years back at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.) As a result, I can watch this movie dozens of times (I have) and see something new each time. 

The music, by Kander and Ebb, is marvelous, and both Joel Gray and Liza Minelli give fantastic singing performances. Minelli in particular reaches her peak in this film, and she's largely been a caricature of herself ever since, becoming victim to the pills and liquor that she bemoans in the film (and which also plagued her mother of course.) But in the movie, particularly in the songs "Maybe This Time" and "Cabaret", she matches her mom in soulfulness and rises to the level of greatest vocalist in a movie ever. 

Despite several of the songs being of a playful nature (actually all of them have deadly serious themes) this is a dark, depressing movie about the rise of Nazi Germany on the one hand and the loss of a decadent soul (Minelli as Sally Bowles) on the other. Sally flirts with a normal life all throughout the film, if only she can find stable love from York, or a stable financial existence (from a debauched millionaire who abandons her and York). In the end she can't have either and returns to her inner destruction as the outer world collapses around her. But it's OK, she sings, because "Life is a cabaret", and she has no regrets. Fosse would expand on this theme a few years later in All That Jazz, an autobiographical film that deals with cancer, which is just as brilliant but, for my money, far less enjoyable. THIS movie, however, is both art for art's sake and fun to watch. 

Up next: I feel that life is divided into the horrible and the miserable. That's the two categories. The horrible are like, I don't know, terminal cases, you know, and blind people, crippled. I don't know how they get through life. It's amazing to me. And the miserable is everyone else. So you should be thankful that you're miserable, because that's very lucky, to be miserable.

Edited by timschochet

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23 hours ago, BobbyLayne said:

 

:wub:

 

I don't know why you won't admit to loving this one.

I like the chess scenes a lot. The rest of the film is really dull for me. 

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6 minutes ago, timschochet said:

10. Cabaret (1972)

Directed by: Bob Fosse

Starring: Liza Minelli, Michael York, Joel Grey

My top ten films are going to involve longer write-ups.

Although I am a huge fan of the Broadway musical, I don't generally like their adaptions to the big screen. Something usually is missing- even films that a lot of Broadway fans love, like Chicago or My Fair Lady, I only like. Obviously, Cabaret is an exception to that rule. There are several reasons why:

First off is that, with only one exceptions, all of the songs in this musical are onstage, part of the Cabaret show, and are not directly incidental to the plot. They are, in a sense, intermissions to the story of Christopher Isherwood's life in Weimar Germany. (Michael York plays Brian Roberts, heavily based on the gay, Communist Isherwood.) The exception is of course "Tomorrow Belongs to Me", which has got to be one of the most chilling scenes ever produced on film, in which Hitler Youth sing beautifully about the rise of the Nazi Party. In this one scene, Fosse captures brilliantly the lure of fascism as a return to old values, just as he brilliantly captures the growing anti-Semitism in the ballad "If You Could See Her" (in which the MC is comically in love with a gorilla, only to reveal that the gorilla is Jewish at the end of the song.) 

There is more. The Weimar era featured German Expressionism, one of the most pivotal art movements of the 20th century, featuring painters such as George Grosz and Otto Dix (later banned by Joseph Goebbels as "Decadent Art") films such as Metropolis, and architecture like the Bauhaus movement. Bob Fosse takes all these and imitates them in his camera work and costumes, particularly in the nightclub: his camera shots are direct copies of Grosz paintings from the era (and no, I'm no art expert; but my wife was an art major at UCLA and she exposed me to "Decadent Art" along with an exhibit several years back at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.) As a result, I can watch this movie dozens of times (I have) and see something new each time. 

The music, by Kander and Ebb, is marvelous, and both Joel Gray and Liza Minelli give fantastic singing performances. Minelli in particular reaches her peak in this film, and she's largely been a caricature of herself ever since, becoming victim to the pills and liquor that she bemoans in the film (and which also plagued her mother of course.) But in the movie, particularly in the songs "Maybe This Time" and "Cabaret", she matches her mom in soulfulness and rises to the level of greatest vocalist in a movie ever. 

Despite several of the songs being of a playful nature (actually all of them have deadly serious themes) this is a dark, depressing movie about the rise of Nazi Germany on the one hand and the loss of a decadent soul (Minelli as Sally Bowles) on the other. Sally flirts with a normal life all throughout the film, if only she can find stable love from York, or a stable financial existence (from a debauched millionaire who abandons her and York). In the end she can't have either and returns to her inner destruction as the outer world collapses around her. But it's OK, she sings, because "Life is a cabaret", and she has no regrets. Fosse would expand on this theme a few years later in All That Jazz, an autobiographical film that deals with cancer, which is just as brilliant but, for my money, far less enjoyable. THIS movie, however, is both art for art's sake and fun to watch. 

Up next: I feel that life is divided into the horrible and the miserable. That's the two categories. The horrible are like, I don't know, terminal cases, you know, and blind people, crippled. I don't know how they get through life. It's amazing to me. And the miserable is everyone else. So you should be thankful that you're miserable, because that's very lucky, to be miserable.

If this movie didn't show me that a movie musical can actually tell stories BETTER than dramas when done right, i never would have devoted the last 6 yrs to writing one of my own, so i thank Kander, Ebb & Fosse for sending me on the greatest journey of my life. That said, the 2nd act drags until the payoff, especially if Liza Minelli is an acquired taste for one. I'd actually like to see Sam Mendes try filming the version he and my cousin staged @ Studio54 so successfully in the late 90s - less heft but more snap.

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6 minutes ago, wikkidpissah said:

If this movie didn't show me that a movie musical can actually tell stories BETTER than dramas when done right, i never would have devoted the last 6 yrs to writing one of my own, so i thank Kander, Ebb & Fosse for sending me on the greatest journey of my life. That said, the 2nd act drags until the payoff, especially if Liza Minelli is an acquired taste for one. I'd actually like to see Sam Mendes try filming the version he and my cousin staged @ Studio54 so successfully in the late 90s - less heft but more snap.

I saw that version- or at least I think I did. The Los Angeles tour in the late 90s featured Teri Hatcher as Sally, and Michael C. Hall as the emcee (though at the time I had no idea who he was.) But your cousin was involved in that? Pretty awesome. :thumbup: 

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I loved that late 90s stage version but it was very different from the film and takes nothing away from the film- except for the end. At the very end of that show, the cast came out all wearing concentration camp outfits- the striped uniforms of Auschwitz victims. The message was obvious- a bit over obvious and over the top. I thought that it was an unnecessary attempt to bludgeon the audience. But other than that, excellent. 

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Cabaret is a wonderful film that seems to get overlooked a bit today.  It was made at a transition point for Hollywood musicals.  The 60s had lots of big budget, prestige musicals ranging from the ridiculous (Finnian's Rainbow, Paint Your Wagon) to the sublime (West Side Story, The Sound of Music) that had their origins on Broadway.  The 70s brought rock-influenced music into musicals with adapted rock operas and Andrew Lloyd Webber.  Cabaret was a period piece so it was able to avoid the trends of its era.  Along with the influences Tim noted, there are strains of Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht in the mix as well.  Cabaret was either the last musical from one era or the first of a new set of more serious musicals.  I would probably argue the latter because of the way the songs are integrated into the script.  The musical numbers are edited into the story rather than the actors suddenly breaking into song in the middle of a scene.  In either event, it was the last musical to be nominated for a Best Picture Oscar for nearly three decades.   The 1960s had averaged almost one nominated musical per year.

Cabaret is perfectly cast and strikingly choreographed.  As Tim mentioned, the production design borrows heavily from Neue Sachlichkeit art and has in turn shaped viewers perspectives of what Weimar Germany must have been like.  It's hard to believe it's been longer from the release of Cabaret to the present than it was between the rise of Hitler and the making of the film.

 

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Just now, timschochet said:

I loved that late 90s stage version but it was very different from the film and takes nothing away from the film- except for the end. At the very end of that show, the cast came out all wearing concentration camp outfits- the striped uniforms of Auschwitz victims. The message was obvious- a bit over obvious and over the top. I thought that it was an unnecessary attempt to bludgeon the audience. But other than that, excellent. 

The Fosse film was different from the stage play.  The characters from the rooming house featured more in the original production.

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Just now, Eephus said:

The Fosse film was different from the stage play.  The characters from the rooming house featured more in the original production.

Right. Plus, Sally Bowles is British. 

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15 minutes ago, timschochet said:

I saw that version- or at least I think I did. The Los Angeles tour in the late 90s featured Teri Hatcher as Sally, and Michael C. Hall as the emcee (though at the time I had no idea who he was.) But your cousin was involved in that? Pretty awesome. :thumbup: 

Yeah - same one who directed the movie of Chicago. Sam Mendes had staged Cabaret in London a few years before but was having trouble getting Broadway to do it until Hal Prince, who directed the original, helped him - at the cost of co-directing it w my cousin, who'd just choreographed Kiss of the Spider Woman for Prince. Within a couple of years, both Cabaret revival co-directors directed Best Picture movies in each their first attempts.

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11 minutes ago, timschochet said:

Right. Plus, Sally Bowles is British. 

Judi Dench was the first Sally Bowles

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8 minutes ago, wikkidpissah said:

Judi Dench was the first Sally Bowles

I'm sure Dame Dench and Liza with a Zed get mistaken for each other all the time.

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1 hour ago, timschochet said:

10. Cabaret (1972)

Directed by: Bob Fosse

Starring: Liza Minelli, Michael York, Joel Grey

My top ten films are going to involve longer write-ups.

Although I am a huge fan of the Broadway musical, I don't generally like their adaptions to the big screen. Something usually is missing- even films that a lot of Broadway fans love, like Chicago or My Fair Lady, I only like. Obviously, Cabaret is an exception to that rule. There are several reasons why:

First off is that, with only one exceptions, all of the songs in this musical are onstage, part of the Cabaret show, and are not directly incidental to the plot. They are, in a sense, intermissions to the story of Christopher Isherwood's life in Weimar Germany. (Michael York plays Brian Roberts, heavily based on the gay, Communist Isherwood.) The exception is of course "Tomorrow Belongs to Me", which has got to be one of the most chilling scenes ever produced on film, in which Hitler Youth sing beautifully about the rise of the Nazi Party. In this one scene, Fosse captures brilliantly the lure of fascism as a return to old values, just as he brilliantly captures the growing anti-Semitism in the ballad "If You Could See Her" (in which the MC is comically in love with a gorilla, only to reveal that the gorilla is Jewish at the end of the song.) 

There is more. The Weimar era featured German Expressionism, one of the most pivotal art movements of the 20th century, featuring painters such as George Grosz and Otto Dix (later banned by Joseph Goebbels as "Decadent Art") films such as Metropolis, and architecture like the Bauhaus movement. Bob Fosse takes all these and imitates them in his camera work and costumes, particularly in the nightclub: his camera shots are direct copies of Grosz paintings from the era (and no, I'm no art expert; but my wife was an art major at UCLA and she exposed me to "Decadent Art" along with an exhibit several years back at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.) As a result, I can watch this movie dozens of times (I have) and see something new each time. 

The music, by Kander and Ebb, is marvelous, and both Joel Gray and Liza Minelli give fantastic singing performances. Minelli in particular reaches her peak in this film, and she's largely been a caricature of herself ever since, becoming victim to the pills and liquor that she bemoans in the film (and which also plagued her mother of course.) But in the movie, particularly in the songs "Maybe This Time" and "Cabaret", she matches her mom in soulfulness and rises to the level of greatest vocalist in a movie ever. 

Despite several of the songs being of a playful nature (actually all of them have deadly serious themes) this is a dark, depressing movie about the rise of Nazi Germany on the one hand and the loss of a decadent soul (Minelli as Sally Bowles) on the other. Sally flirts with a normal life all throughout the film, if only she can find stable love from York, or a stable financial existence (from a debauched millionaire who abandons her and York). In the end she can't have either and returns to her inner destruction as the outer world collapses around her. But it's OK, she sings, because "Life is a cabaret", and she has no regrets. Fosse would expand on this theme a few years later in All That Jazz, an autobiographical film that deals with cancer, which is just as brilliant but, for my money, far less enjoyable. THIS movie, however, is both art for art's sake and fun to watch. 

Up next: I feel that life is divided into the horrible and the miserable. That's the two categories. The horrible are like, I don't know, terminal cases, you know, and blind people, crippled. I don't know how they get through life. It's amazing to me. And the miserable is everyone else. So you should be thankful that you're miserable, because that's very lucky, to be miserable.

We did this show my junior year in high school.  Talk about controversial.  We did the whole shebang, including If you Could See Her and Two Ladies.  I played Ernst Ludwig and led Tomorrow Belongs to Me which ended with nearly the entire cast frozen giving the Nazi salute in front of huge Swastika flags as the lights died to end the Act.  Not the lightest of fair for the local high schoolers to tackle.  Add to that the fact that we had girls as young as 14 in garters and fishnets dancing provocatively on stage as Kit Kat girls, and it was a bit of a controversial dust up in our town (Irvine, by the way, Tim).

Probably the greatest show I've ever been a part of.  The two cast members who played Sally and the Emcee (both of whom were Jewish) were phenomenally talented.  They won all sorts of state wide awards.

Apologies for the "look at me" diversion.

Edited by bigbottom
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Is there a master list?  How much gay porn has been taken so far?

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3 minutes ago, ScottNorwood said:

How much gay porn has been taken so far?

I think Cabaret was the first off the board - you got your pick cowboy.

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On 3/18/2017 at 0:12 PM, wikkidpissah said:

I most intensely remember my first Bogie experience. I knew who he was cuz he was big when i was a kid and my uncle & dad's college buds were always imitating him but i hadn't really seen him til a sick day when the Dialing-for-Dollars movie had this stoopit thing of Bette Davis & a gay guy arguing about poetry outside a gas station in the desert. I had a fever & was waiting for soup so i didnt get up and change the channel. Then a gangster car pulled up and this sweaty, unshaven guy gets out and looks at everybody like he's deciding whether to shoot em or bite their nose off. And he's scared and he's mad and obnoxious and cool at the same time and he's making everybody be scared and mad and sweaty too cuz he's gotta hole up and wait for dis dame, see?! And it was just the bossest ####in thing i ever saw. I can still feel Bogie's Duke Mantee inside me in turbulent times.

Petrified Forest is really good. Bogey and young Bette!

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4 minutes ago, Ilov80s said:

Petrified Forest is really good. Bogey and young Bette!

It's very stagey and hasn't aged well IMO.  Bogart is very good though.

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13 minutes ago, Eephus said:

It's very stagey and hasn't aged well IMO.  Bogart is very good though.

It's definitely a clear adaptation but I've only seen it once (about a year ago) and I thought it was real good. 

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9. Annie Hall (1977)

Directed by: Woody Allen

Starring: Woody Allen, Diane Keaton, Tony Roberts

Can a movie be both dated and timeless at the same time?

Annie Hall is certainly dated; it is solely focused on the very specific culture of 1970s New York Jewish liberal intellectual elites, and the types of restaurants and movies they visited, books they read, associations they made, etc. At the same time, this movie is a masterful study of human relationships that extend far beyond that decade. The love affair between Alvy and Annie is timeless and extremely relevant to modern society, in the same way that great art like Romeo and Juliet remains relevant.

Allen is a huge fan of the European filmmakers Bergman and Fellini, and he "borrows" (the appropriate word might be "steals") several things that they originated in this movie: the cinematography at times is pure Fellini, such as the conversations in the car or the two guys walking down the street (which the camera only sees at a distance.) The scenes in which the subtitles show what Alvy and Annie are thinking, when they magically get to visit Annie's old boyfriends, when Alvy is confronted by his childhood classmates, and particularly the brilliant scene in which Annie steps outside of herself while having sex in order to read a book, are all Bergman. But as innovative as those two directors are, I find their films boring and difficult to watch, frankly. Annie Hall is not, mainly because of Allen and Marshall Brickman's sharp writing and Allen's irreverent, hilarious humor which carries the film. Of course there are so many classic funny scenes, with the Marshall McLuhan movie line leading the way.

Another reason this movie is so great and timeless is Diane Keaton's superb acting in her greatest role. She begins the film as insecure, but her relationship with Alvy makes her far more confident (and this is symbolized in the film by her two nightclub performances, in which the viewer is able to see a completely different woman.) Carol Kane, Shelly Duval, Paul Simon and ESPECIALLY Christopher Walken (as Annie's creepy brother) all shine in small but memorable roles. Although I love several Woody Allen movies (all listed here) this one is easily his best for me, even if it's message is a bit more depressing than Hannah and Her Sisters. Is love really doomed? Should we truly be thankful that we're only miserable and not worse?

One final note- my daughter who is a huge Broadway fan made me watch The Last Five Years recently, which I enjoyed. The music was very good. But I realized afterwards that the storyline is simply a more modern version of Annie Hall.

Up next: We'd better get back, 'cause it'll be dark soon, and they mostly come at night... mostly.

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Never mind - you contradicted yourself a million times in your first paragraph. I had a bunch of stuff written out but have since deleted it.

Looking forward to your next choice and the text!

 

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1 hour ago, timschochet said:

9. Annie Hall (1977)

Directed by: Woody Allen

Starring: Woody Allen, Diane Keaton, Tony Roberts

Can a movie be both dated and timeless at the same time?

Annie Hall is certainly dated; it is solely focused on the very specific culture of 1970s New York Jewish liberal intellectual elites, and the types of restaurants and movies they visited, books they read, associations they made, etc. At the same time, this movie is a masterful study of human relationships that extend far beyond that decade. The love affair between Alvy and Annie is timeless and extremely relevant to modern society, in the same way that great art like Romeo and Juliet remains relevant.

Allen is a huge fan of the European filmmakers Bergman and Fellini, and he "borrows" (the appropriate word might be "steals") several things that they originated in this movie: the cinematography at times is pure Fellini, such as the conversations in the car or the two guys walking down the street (which the camera only sees at a distance.) The scenes in which the subtitles show what Alvy and Annie are thinking, when they magically get to visit Annie's old boyfriends, when Alvy is confronted by his childhood classmates, and particularly the brilliant scene in which Annie steps outside of herself while having sex in order to read a book, are all Bergman. But as innovative as those two directors are, I find their films boring and difficult to watch, frankly. Annie Hall is not, mainly because of Allen and Marshall Brickman's sharp writing and Allen's irreverent, hilarious humor which carries the film. Of course there are so many classic funny scenes, with the Marshall McLuhan movie line leading the way.

Another reason this movie is so great and timeless is Diane Keaton's superb acting in her greatest role. She begins the film as insecure, but her relationship with Alvy makes her far more confident (and this is symbolized in the film by her two nightclub performances, in which the viewer is able to see a completely different woman.) Carol Kane, Shelly Duval, Paul Simon and ESPECIALLY Christopher Walken (as Annie's creepy brother) all shine in small but memorable roles. Although I love several Woody Allen movies (all listed here) this one is easily his best for me, even if it's message is a bit more depressing than Hannah and Her Sisters. Is love really doomed? Should we truly be thankful that we're only miserable and not worse?

One final note- my daughter who is a huge Broadway fan made me watch The Last Five Years recently, which I enjoyed. The music was very good. But I realized afterwards that the storyline is simply a more modern version of Annie Hall.

Up next: We'd better get back, 'cause it'll be dark soon, and they mostly come at night... mostly.

Easily the most important Boomer movie - as big as Star Wars to GenX. The counterculture largely improvised its tearing down of old mores and really hadnt given much thought to how to live as long as it was new. Allen gave us the look at ourselves which really helped many of us decide which way to go. 

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I think Annie Hall has aged better than many other 70s and 80s films.  It definitely has a very specific milieu but it's one that few viewers are intimately familiar with, so the cultural references don't lose a lot in translation.  The scenes set in LA seem the most dated but they bordered on parody when originally made.

One of the biggest problems for modern audiences is Allen himself.   The artist, the man and the characters he's played are so intertwined that it's hard for some people to get past the creepiness of his pedophilia. 

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53 minutes ago, wikkidpissah said:

Easily the most important Boomer movie - 

Not sure about this. I love it, but I think most people would choose The Graduate (not on my list). 

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1 minute ago, timschochet said:

Not sure about this. I love it, but I think most people would choose The Graduate (not on my list). 

Early boomers, yeah. Not sure about the boomers both in the 60s though. Generations as we label them are too broad to attach to 1 film.

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1 hour ago, wikkidpissah said:

Easily the most important Boomer movie - as big as Star Wars to GenX.

Funny that the two movies were released six weeks apart in 1977.   I realize Allen and Lucas were targeting different audiences but probably not different generations.

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8. Aliens (1986)

Directed by: James Cameron

Starring: Sigourney Weaver, Michael Biehn, Paul Reiser, Bill Paxton

Alien was an excellent horror movie, set in outer space. The key to Alien was not that it was in outer space, but that it was in an isolated place; it would have worked equally well in the artic (see John Carpenter's The Thing) or deep underwater (see The Abyss, though that was not a horror film). They were alone- hence the advertising line, "In space, no one can hear you scream."

This sequel is NOT a horror movie, per se- it's a science fiction shoot 'em up action movie, and IMO, the very best of it's genre, which includes all of the Star Wars movies and, with all apologies to my friend Yankee2fan, The Wrath of Khan (Yankee complained that I didn't rank that film higher.) What makes it so great? Let's discuss the various ways:

First of course, we get to know the characters involved before the main action starts happening. This is a simple thing in film, but it's amazing how often it's overlooked in action movies that involve large ensemble casts. It's true that Cameron only provides us stereotypical glimpses of personality traits (Vasquez is tough, Hudson is a joker, Gorman is inexperienced, etc.)but it's enough, enough so that we feel like we know them once the aliens attack, and that makes their struggles all the more enjoyable and exciting.

As I wrote Vasquez is tough, one of the toughest women ever on screen (which is why people continue to talk about this character even 30 years later) but she can't hold a candle to Weaver's Ripley, who manages to be not only of the the strongest female personalities in the history of cinema but at the same time to retain her humanity. The character of Newt is provided to cement this, but it is apparent all throughout the movie, beginning with her reluctance to go to the planet in the first place (the "reluctant hero" being in the finest Hollywood tradition- Weaver is Gary Cooper here). Perhaps the most pivotal demonstration of Ripley's imperfections come late in the film- when, after having reached an agreement with the main alien that Newt will be released in exchange for the lives of the alien babies, Ripley decides to kill them anyhow. This is such a key moment in the movie: showing us Ripley's rage, the amoral (or immoral) nature of her act (she is aware that a nuclear explosion is going to kill all of the aliens anyhow, but she wants the alien mother to suffer.) At least to my knowledge, this scene of Ripley murdering the alien children is unique in Hollywood filmmaking.

There is a sleight of hand early in the film in which the viewer is made aware that there will be a non-alien villain, but we are made to believe it is likely to be Bishop, the android. The actual villain, Paul Reiser, does a great job at being a weasel from his first appearance on screen. Of course Bill Paxton is excellent and he is given the most memorable one-liners in the entire movie (and some of the best in film history.) The direction expertly avoids showing the aliens close up very often, giving them glimpses and portraying them in shadow, which adds to their terror (it is also because of the special effects limitations at the time this film was made- if it had been made today, it would have likely been a very different movie in terms of special effects- and perhaps not as good.) Despite this not really being a horror movie like the first one, there are scenes of sheer terror as great as any horror movie- for instance, Newt lost in the water as the alien rises behind her.

I'm sure that this movie is considered flawed by those fans who are so consumed with the "logic" of stuff that they can find holes in the plot. Any movie with this much action is going to no doubt strain believability at times (though this movie apparently doesn't come close to another of my picks, Independence Day, in this regard.) But I never subscribe to such silliness; when I am watching a Hollywood action epic like this one I simply suspend my disbelief from the very beginning, and rarely if ever question the plot. That allows me to enjoy the movie that much more, though this particular film doesn't need the help- it's truly one of the most entertaining Hollywood movies ever made.

Up next: Josef Peters! Nobody hits a pure bred German woman in the face!

 

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13 hours ago, Andy Dufresne said:

I'm positive that I will go to my grave without having ever seen Cabaret or Annie Hall.

Well that's too bad.

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8 minutes ago, timschochet said:

Up next: Josef Peters! Nobody hits a pure bred German woman in the face!

 

Great a bunch of Jew/Nazi movies :rolleyes:

J/k Timmy - can't wait to see the write-up on Victory!

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4 minutes ago, AAABatteries said:

Great a bunch of Jew/Nazi movies :rolleyes:

J/k Timmy - can't wait to see the write-up on Victory!

Did you miss it? That came in at # 43.

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lessee...............Cabaret..............#7................................. Figured it out. Yentl #1! *lalala* Timmy, can you hear me?

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4 minutes ago, wikkidpissah said:

lessee...............Cabaret..............#7................................. Figured it out. Yentl #1! *lalala* Timmy, can you hear me?

The food on the dishes, it's all so delicious! 

How can I not love Yentl, which such awesome lyrics as that? 

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On ‎8‎/‎11‎/‎2015 at 2:17 PM, Yankee23Fan said:

Andrew Johnson (1865-1869)

Public Acumen/Persuasion

If Johnson was half the man Lincoln was there is a chance that he could have had an effective time in office. But he wasn’t close. Johnson seemed to believe that when he talked to anyone he should remain supportive of whatever they were talking about, and then do whatever he wanted after the fact. This angered just about everyone. Bills that were thought to have his support were vetoed, he completely miscalculated the effects of the civil war on the country and how the north would deal with reconstruction, and he ultimately alienated his party, the other party, the whole of Congress, most of the states and just about everyone in between. The depths of his failures here are so massive that it would take too long to get through, but let’s just say that giving him a 1 here is being nice.

The guy even tried to talk directly to the people when he wanted to run for re-election and just about every speech backfired considerably.

War & Crisis

Johnson’s main crisis upon taking office after the death of Abraham Lincoln was reconstruction. With Congress out of session until the end of the year, the initial 6 months of rebuilding the country were his sole responsibility. Johnson set out to reform the state governments by appointing governors to write new constitutions that demanded the south to basically come back on bended knee. His plans were going to be much harsher than Lincoln’s. Except for some reason that is hard to explain in history, he backed down almost immediately on many of his threats and began pardoning a ton of people, including leaders of the south. At the same time while he demanded the new state constitutions to be anti-slavery almost all of them had ‘black codes’ that were a small step above slavery and Johnson just kept working with them.

When Congress came back into session they attacked almost every aspect of his plan. Radical republicans wanted the south punished. Moderates tried to find some common ground to make it all work, and Johnson believed that the black question was more left to the states and got in the way of any progress. Johnson tried to block voting rights for blacks until his last days in office and it resulted in his facing impeachment.

When the impeachment crisis started it looked fairly clear that Johnson was going to be removed from office. But he eventually made a deal with congressional republicans to stay away from fighting them on reconstruction if they didn’t vote to convict. In that deal, Johnson hamstrung future presidents as Congress acted with more formal power than they had in the face of the executive – something that was feared to have happened with Harrison died 40 years earlier.

Economy

He so mishandled reconstruction that he had no economic policy to speak of. Congress eventually began running the country and he was a figurehead at best. Was the economy better when he left? Not really. It’s about the nicest thing you can say about Johnson.

Foreign Policy

Giving Johnson credit for any foreign policy acts while he was in office is an affront to William Seward. Facing massive problems at home and an inability to do anything with it, Seward was basically our Prime Minister. He negotiated with Russia, got Johnson to send troops to Mexico to stop fighting there with France, and made peace with England over civil war claims. Johnson didn’t have the ability to do any of this without Seward, had no true set policy and left the foreign affairs of his time to a better man. If he handled foreign affairs the way he handled his own country, we would have been invaded by every country under the sun.

Executive Skills/Congress

He had one shining moment in his first week when the cabinet supported him. Then all hell broke loose. He fought with congress, he fired Stanton, he went to war with republicans, supported democrats, thought he was better than all of them, and made enemies in every single corridor of power in the country. The result was the impeachment movement that almost removed him from power. Good rule of thumb for all Presidents – look at how Johnson handled congress and then do the opposite. You are pretty much guaranteed a 7 or more in this category.

Justice/Rights

Johnson was an unapologetic racist. He allowed black codes throughout the south, regarded the slavery question as a waste of time, vetoed the Freedman’s Bureau, fought the amendments to the Constitution that were making their way through the country, and did everything in his power to stop blacks from having equal footing – or any footing – in the country after the war.

Context

It would have been hard for anyone to follow Lincoln. Though he won the war, the smoke was still rising from the battles. It required a political skill to work within the rebuilding of the nation that few had. Lincoln would have managed it. Johnson couldn’t. His personal failures were immense, his political failures were worse. Congress basically stripped executive power from the President just 3 years after our greatest President rules so well simply because Johnson was so bad. And his failures led to an awful 30 years of reconstruction that result in the racism problems this country has even today. The black codes that he ignored and allowed to fester turned the south into an anti-black zone for decades. In every measure, Andrew Johnson was an awful President.

Conclusion

Lincoln’s corpse could have been a better President, Weekend at Bernie’s style. At least then, Seward and Stanton could have run the country for a few years. On persuasion he gets a 1, on crisis a 1, economy 1, foreign policy 2, congress 1, civil rights 1, context 1. 8 total points. And only because the lowest is 7. We are still feeling the effects of the great failure of Andrew Johnson in this country. Future Presidents had a helluva time trying to fix everything. And unlike Buchanan and Pierce, there is nothing you can point to, however small, and say that at least Johnson did that right. He did nothing right.

It is really remarkable how I can really just replace the names here and be pretty close to dead on balls accurate at the moment for the current occupant of the White House.  Obviously, things change over time, but the trajectory we are seeing unfold here has happened before, to President Johnson, and it didn't end well for anyone.

Johnson was a miserable drunk though.  So there is that difference.

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7. Europa Europa (1990)

Directed by: Agniezska Holland

Starring: Marco Hofschneider, Julie Delpy

It's a good guess that this will be the least seen movie in my top ten- it's the only foreign film on my entire list, it was made in 1990, and it has no recognizable stars (although Julie Delpy did have a certain independent career thanks to the Before Sunrise/Before Sunset films. Yet Europa Europa is easily one of my favorite movies of all time, since it's the best film I've ever seen about Nazi Germany. I need to make that distinction up front here: this movie is not about the rise of Nazi Germany (as is Cabaret), nor is it about the Holocaust (which is the main topic of a film yet to be ranked)- it's about life among the Nazis themselves, and they're not dancing, like the execrable Swing Kids. 

This film is a black comedy based on the astonishing true story of Solomon Perel, a Jewish teenager who survived World War II by pretending he was a German soldier, and then became a member of the Hitler Youth. Yet Perel's own story is secondary in the film to the people he encounters during his strange journey: the German soldiers who will shoot Russian and Jewish men, women, and children at the drop of a hat, yet otherwise are just normal, ordinary homesick guys. The colonel who patiently explains to Jupp (Solomon) that the real war the Germans are fighting is not against Russia or America but the Jews, and then adopts him as a son. The middle aged lady who escorts Jupp to the Hitler Youth school and has sex with him on the train, screaming "Mein Fuhrer!" (this was a particularly nice touch.) And most disturbing of all, Julie Delpy's portrayal as the Hitler Youth girl eager to bear children for the Third Reich. 

As I wrote, this is not a Holocaust movie, though it does feature some unnerving Holocaust scenes, particularly when Jupp travels through the Krakow Ghetto on a closed trolley car, trying to get a glimpse of his parents. There is also some early scenes in the film before Perel assumes his German identity, which are fascinating and dreamlike, particularly his time in a Communist orphanage (Comrade Stalin bests God in giving candy to the kids), a movie sequence in which Perel is accompanied by a strange Polish humpback woman, and a nightmare in which Hitler and Stalin dance a waltz together.

As described, this astonishing movie is filled with visual delights and amazing narrative sequences and acting, and as absurd as it's true storyline is, it's believable as well. Unfortunately is not available on Amazon Prime, or Netflix; you have to order the DVD. There are two versions, subtitled and dubbed, and the subtitled is the one worth seeing.

Up next: I value my neck a lot more than three thousand bucks, chief. I'll find him for three, but I'll catch him, and kill him, for ten.

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I rarely post in any of your threads but this is spot on. Don't want to do any spoilers but the Poles and the Germans
meeting each other in the Rhine? is a movie at it's best(for me) and war at it's worst.

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On 3/31/2017 at 8:43 AM, Yankee23Fan said:

It is really remarkable how I can really just replace the names here and be pretty close to dead on balls accurate at the moment for the current occupant of the White House.  Obviously, things change over time, but the trajectory we are seeing unfold here has happened before, to President Johnson, and it didn't end well for anyone.

...

Thank you, I've been saying this as well.

AJ  is a comp for Trump.

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3 hours ago, timschochet said:

7. Europa Europa (1990)

Directed by: Agniezska Holland

Starring: Marco Hofschneider, Julie Delpy

It's a good guess that this will be the least seen movie in my top ten- it's the only foreign film on my entire list, it was made in 1990, and it has no recognizable stars (although Julie Delpy did have a certain independent career thanks to the Before Sunrise/Before Sunset films. Yet Europa Europa is easily one of my favorite movies of all time, since it's the best film I've ever seen about Nazi Germany. I need to make that distinction up front here: this movie is not about the rise of Nazi Germany (as is Cabaret), nor is it about the Holocaust (which is the main topic of a film yet to be ranked)- it's about life among the Nazis themselves, and they're not dancing, like the execrable Swing Kids. 

This film is a black comedy based on the astonishing true story of Solomon Perel, a Jewish teenager who survived World War II by pretending he was a German soldier, and then became a member of the Hitler Youth. Yet Perel's own story is secondary in the film to the people he encounters during his strange journey: the German soldiers who will shoot Russian and Jewish men, women, and children at the drop of a hat, yet otherwise are just normal, ordinary homesick guys. The colonel who patiently explains to Jupp (Solomon) that the real war the Germans are fighting is not against Russia or America but the Jews, and then adopts him as a son. The middle aged lady who escorts Jupp to the Hitler Youth school and has sex with him on the train, screaming "Mein Fuhrer!" (this was a particularly nice touch.) And most disturbing of all, Julie Delpy's portrayal as the Hitler Youth girl eager to bear children for the Third Reich. 

As I wrote, this is not a Holocaust movie, though it does feature some unnerving Holocaust scenes, particularly when Jupp travels through the Krakow Ghetto on a closed trolley car, trying to get a glimpse of his parents. There is also some early scenes in the film before Perel assumes his German identity, which are fascinating and dreamlike, particularly his time in a Communist orphanage (Comrade Stalin bests God in giving candy to the kids), a movie sequence in which Perel is accompanied by a strange Polish humpback woman, and a nightmare in which Hitler and Stalin dance a waltz together.

As described, this astonishing movie is filled with visual delights and amazing narrative sequences and acting, and as absurd as it's true storyline is, it's believable as well. Unfortunately is not available on Amazon Prime, or Netflix; you have to order the DVD. There are two versions, subtitled and dubbed, and the subtitled is the one worth seeing.

Up next: I value my neck a lot more than three thousand bucks, chief. I'll find him for three, but I'll catch him, and kill him, for ten.

Though your every word colors you more a humorless prig, your honesty and thoroughgoing picture of the world makes you an authetically fascinating individual.

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On 3/28/2017 at 3:03 PM, timschochet said:

I like the chess scenes a lot. The rest of the film is really dull for me. 

You should give it more effort/time...the chess scenes were easy...

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This is a odd list for sure (in a good way).  I absolutely love about every other pick, and scratch my head on the others.  1000% on board for #6.  I need to buy that damn movie (maybe tomorrow when I pick up Rogue One for the son). 

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9 hours ago, timschochet said:

7. Europa Europa (1990)

Directed by: Agniezska Holland

Starring: Marco Hofschneider, Julie Delpy

It's a good guess that this will be the least seen movie in my top ten- it's the only foreign film on my entire list, it was made in 1990, and it has no recognizable stars (although Julie Delpy did have a certain independent career thanks to the Before Sunrise/Before Sunset films. Yet Europa Europa is easily one of my favorite movies of all time, since it's the best film I've ever seen about Nazi Germany. I need to make that distinction up front here: this movie is not about the rise of Nazi Germany (as is Cabaret), nor is it about the Holocaust (which is the main topic of a film yet to be ranked)- it's about life among the Nazis themselves, and they're not dancing, like the execrable Swing Kids. 

This film is a black comedy based on the astonishing true story of Solomon Perel, a Jewish teenager who survived World War II by pretending he was a German soldier, and then became a member of the Hitler Youth. Yet Perel's own story is secondary in the film to the people he encounters during his strange journey: the German soldiers who will shoot Russian and Jewish men, women, and children at the drop of a hat, yet otherwise are just normal, ordinary homesick guys. The colonel who patiently explains to Jupp (Solomon) that the real war the Germans are fighting is not against Russia or America but the Jews, and then adopts him as a son. The middle aged lady who escorts Jupp to the Hitler Youth school and has sex with him on the train, screaming "Mein Fuhrer!" (this was a particularly nice touch.) And most disturbing of all, Julie Delpy's portrayal as the Hitler Youth girl eager to bear children for the Third Reich. 

As I wrote, this is not a Holocaust movie, though it does feature some unnerving Holocaust scenes, particularly when Jupp travels through the Krakow Ghetto on a closed trolley car, trying to get a glimpse of his parents. There is also some early scenes in the film before Perel assumes his German identity, which are fascinating and dreamlike, particularly his time in a Communist orphanage (Comrade Stalin bests God in giving candy to the kids), a movie sequence in which Perel is accompanied by a strange Polish humpback woman, and a nightmare in which Hitler and Stalin dance a waltz together.

As described, this astonishing movie is filled with visual delights and amazing narrative sequences and acting, and as absurd as it's true storyline is, it's believable as well. Unfortunately is not available on Amazon Prime, or Netflix; you have to order the DVD. There are two versions, subtitled and dubbed, and the subtitled is the one worth seeing.

Up next: I value my neck a lot more than three thousand bucks, chief. I'll find him for three, but I'll catch him, and kill him, for ten.

I love Swing kids

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1 hour ago, shader said:

I love Swing kids

I probably shouldn't have used the word "execrable". There is a great dance sequence in that movie, and some good acting by Kenneth Branaugh (he plays a fine Nazi, did you ever see the HBO film Conspiracy?) But over all it's a really disappointing movie, not coming close to living up to it's potential.

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7 hours ago, timschochet said:

I probably shouldn't have used the word "execrable". There is a great dance sequence in that movie, and some good acting by Kenneth Branaugh (he plays a fine Nazi, did you ever see the HBO film Conspiracy?) But over all it's a really disappointing movie, not coming close to living up to it's potential.

In fairness, I first saw it when I was 16.  I thought Robert Sean Leonard was awesome at the time..just wanted to emulate him.  I remember a "swing party" I went to and I tried to dress in all the gear...fun times :lmao:

I

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6. Jaws (1975)

Directed by: Steven Spielberg

Starring: Roy Scheider, Robert Shaw, Richard Dreyfuss

The final 6 films on my list have all been seen by so many people, and written about at length by critics and Hollywood fans alike, that it's almost an insult to them for me to describe them or to explain why they are such great and entertaining films. Instead, for each of these I'll just offer some random thoughts: 

1. This is really two movies. In the first movie, the heroes (Brody and Hooper) face the beach threat of a shark, and a villain, Mayor Vaughn (Murray Hamilton). The second movie, which is the one most fans concentrate on, is the story of 3 men (Quint, Hooper, and Brody) on a small boat trying to kill a great white shark. The first movie has a theme that is very familiar to the filmmaking of the 1970s- man gets greedy with nature and disaster ensues. Two famous examples (among many) are The Towering Inferno and The Poseidon Adventure. In each of these movies, and in Jaws, businessmen are too eager to make money and something terrible happens that could easily have been prevented. The message is don't screw with Mother Nature! But, of course, there is a difference in this movie: in the other two I mentioned, once the disaster happens, the films focus on surviving the disaster. In this movie, the heroes seek to kill the source of the disaster. They decide, in essence, to screw with mother nature after all. 

2. The book that this movie is based on, by Peter Benchley, is just awful. I do not understand why so many people seem to love this book, it is nothing like the movie. It's unexciting and dully written. Brody's wife Ellen has an affair with Hooper (thankfully the film omitted this nonsense.) 

3. Robert Shaw's screen presence is actually quite limited. In the first half he only appears in one (very memorable) scene. He stars in the second half, but it's of shorter length. Even so, he offers one of the all-time great performances. Scheider and Dreyfuss are better for playing off of him. Actually, the tension, camaraderie, and humor between these three men might be the best ever in movies for a threesome. 

4. I first saw this movie at age 10 in the theater. My folks would not take me; my brother who was older went with a friend and snuck me in. For some reason the first 3 quarters of the film didn't scare me, even the scene early on when the head pops out. But when the engine of the boat dies, and they start to build the shark cage- then I was scared. I still believe that it was the most scared I've even been watching a movie. Even now, watching it, knowing how it's all going to come out, it's still very suspenseful and unnerving. 

5. All of the top 6 films on my list have great, memorable music attached to them. These movies would simply not be the same without the music, which is an integral part of the filmmaking. In this case John Williams may have given us his greatest score, as he almost effortlessly captures the fear, speed, and suspense of the great white shark. 

Up next: This is for Allah. And it's goin' way out there, sucka.

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14 hours ago, timschochet said:

and some good acting by Kenneth Branaugh (he plays a fine Nazi, did you ever see the HBO film Conspiracy?)

Fantastic film -- I was simultaneously in disgust and awe in the way the actors brought forth that cavalierness/lack of apprehension in what they were planning/doing. I've watched it a few times and wondered why I would do that other than to enjoy what the actors bring to it.

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2 hours ago, higgins said:

Fantastic film -- I was simultaneously in disgust and awe in the way the actors brought forth that cavalierness/lack of apprehension in what they were planning/doing. I've watched it a few times and wondered why I would do that other than to enjoy what the actors bring to it.

Yeah there are some really good actors in that, a lot of guys who became well known on TV later. It's an all star cast. 

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2 minutes ago, need2know said:

Jaws stands up really well too

Not really - it doesn't even have legs.

:rimshot:

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