Monday, January 28, 2013

View, Rewind, view again

I love movies. Boy do I love movies, and movies that I really love I watch again and again. Here are some of my favorite repeat films, along with some favorite dialogue. WARNING:potential spoilers.

Raiders of the Lost Ark When I bought my first VCR I also wanted to pick up a video that would stand a lot of repeat viewing, and picked Raiders. It was a great choice. I still have that original video (and yes I have a VCR/DVD combo.) I have a great fondness for Last Crusade as well. (Indiana Jones movies apparently are the opposite of Classic Star Trek movies, the odd numbered entries are the good ones.) Favorite lines that often get quoted are "I don't know, I'm making this up as I go" and "Its not the years honey, its the miles."

The Lord of the Rings trilogy.  No other set of films is as loved and re watched in our house as Peter Jackson's massive adaptation of J R R Tolkien's masterpiece.  There are several DVD sets floating around the house, but just to be safe we have all three movies in the director's cut versions on the DVR as well.  Fellowship doesn't get quite as much love as the other two around the house that the other two get, due to a lack of battle scenes (the Boy) and the fact that Eowyn isn't in it (the Girl).  It is not unheard of on days off from school for the whole thing to spool out over the course of a day.  The Girl's favorite line is Eowyn's  "I am no man" as she lops the Nazgul's head off. The Boy can recite Aragorn's speech before the gates of Mordor by heart.  My favorite speech is Sam's at the end of The Two Towers.  It is actually based, in part on one of my favorite passages in the book:
Sam:It's like in the great stories, Mr. Frodo. The ones that really mattered. Full of darkness and danger, they were. And sometimes you didn't want to know the end. Because how could the end be happy? How could the world go back to the way it was when so much bad had happened? But in the end, it's only a passing thing, this shadow. Even darkness must pass. A new day will come. And when the sun shines it will shine out the clearer. Those were the stories that stayed with you. That meant something, even if you were too small to understand why. But I think, Mr. Frodo, I do understand. I know now. Folk in those stories had lots of chances of turning back, only they didn't. They kept going. Because they were holding on to something.
Frodo: What are we holding onto, Sam?
Sam: That there's some good in this world, Mr. Frodo... and it's worth fighting for.h:l

I don't think there is another film I have had so much pleasure watching over the years with my kids.

Young Frankenstein It's not a big favorite of the kids, who don't appreciate the old Universal films enough to get most of the jokes, but its hugely popular with the adults in our house. (in fact my daughter doesn't like black and white films at all.) With the possible exception of another film listed below, no other film has given so many reliable laughs as this one.  The highest tribute to this film is that I now cannot watch  certain scenes in the Karloff Frankensteins without laughing in terribly wrong places, on account of this film.

The Wizard of Oz  I could write a whole book about this film and multi generation traditions in watching it, but suffice to say it has always been popular in our house.  One of the biggest thrills of the Girl's first trip to Washington DC was seeing the ruby slippers at the Smithsonian. My personal favorite line, one I have had many chances to quote in my workplace is "Some people without any brains do an awful lot of talking."  .

Ghostbusters This is the other reliable laughter film, the kind you sit down to with pleasure after a really bad day.  I love "Its the StayPuff marshmallow man", "I find  her interesting because she sleeps above the covers--4 feet above the covers"  and "Your girlfriend lives in the corner penthouse of Spook Central" are among the many many favorite lines, but my kids have heard me say "If a creature asks you if you are a god, you say 'YES' " so many times they had it put on a button for me.

Men In Black OK, one more reliable comedy.  This is probably my kids favorite comedy, and I'm pretty fond of it myself. Tommy Lee Jones and Will Smith are both darn near perfect in this movie, the special effects are spot on, and the script is great.  Although I often have a chance to quote "Congratulations, you are all we have come to expect from years of government training", "this is going to replace  CD's soon, guess I'll have to buy the White Album again", "A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky dangerous animals and you know it " and "we at the FBI do not have  a sense of humor that we are aware of.", my very favorite line is serious:" Fifteen hundred years ago everybody knew the Earth was the center of the universe. Five hundred years ago, everybody knew the Earth was flat, and fifteen minutes ago, you knew that humans were alone on this planet. Imagine what you'll know tomorrow. "

For myself, when the kids aren't around, my favorite films to rewatch include the original version of Psycho, To Kill a Mockingbird, The Thing From Another World, Jason and the Argonauts, and a number of Universal Horror films, especially those starring Boris Karloff. 

Because new movies are nice, but getting to curl up on the couch with an old friend is even better.

This post is part of Express Yourself Meme.

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