I was perusing the American Film Institute's list of the Top 100 Movies of all time. Now, they may be wrong as often as they're right, but it was fun to recall the reasoning behind their choices.
It Happened One Night
When you've got somewhere to go, but you ain't got money for a bus fare (or you've been kicked off the bus after threatening to kill somebody... intrigued?), you must hitch hike. If only there was a guide to hitchhiking. Let's ask Clark Gable what to do! Or, better yet, ask Claudette Colbert...
The Best Years of Our Lives
Probably No. 1 on my personal list, though No. 37 on the AFI's list. After the end of WWII, the saga of American GIs and their return to civilianhood was part of everyday life. This phenomenal film follows three men, each from a different military branch, each returning to a different moment on life's timeline. This moment, the 'First Stop' for the men coming home, is one of my favorite parts.
There are many others on the list which I would LOVE to highlight here, but YouTube is sorely lacking clips for some of the better films... Bringing Up Baby , Sullivan's Travels , Yankee Doodle Dandy , All About Eve , etc. But you can find the full version of John Ford's masterpiece The Searchers (probably one of John Wayne's best movies) divided into 13 parts.
Oh, wait, I should add a clip from a movie that may top the Worst 100 Movies of all time, one I should watched again the other night and prompted Jonathan to inquire, "What is the difference, exactly, between this movie and an episode of Scooby Doo?"
Ladies and Gentlemen... and my friends, too... I am excited to present Muscle Beach Party , a spicy 1964 tidbit starring the incomparable Frankie Avalon alongside the voluptuous Annette Funicello. (Beware: It is completely devoid of plot... and the only saving grace is that this film introduced "Little Stevie Wonder.")
To close, I'll leave you with this Frankie Avalon quote:
" I was not a trained actor."
(No kidding. How positively kooky !)