My Top Ten

Well, it’s about that time of year again. No, not just New Year’s Resolution time, but you can do that if you wish. I’m talking about my Top Ten All-Time Favorite Movie List.

Every year I like to take a little time to put together a list of my ten favorite feature films. I reflect on my most-loved stories and performers. I compare my lists from past years and make adjustments.

Why do I bother? It’s not a life or death issue, but it does give me a little insight into how I’ve changed. I look at the list as a whole and then do a little analysis. What makes this one better than that? Why are all of my favorites family films? Why are four of the ten black and whites? Why did the Westerns that made my list last year slip off the list this year? Hmmm… all good questions.

My list is primarily composed of adventures, romances, mysteries and monsters. They all have happy (or mostly happy) endings. Every one contains funny and eccentric characters. What do you think that says about me?

Here is my list:

1.     Charade, 1963, Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn

2.     Rear Window, 1954, Jimmy Stewart and Grace Kelly

 3.     Princess Bride, 1987, Cary Elwes, Mandy Patinkin and Robin Wright

4.     Casablanca, 1942, Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Berman and Claude Raines

5.     Star Wars, Episode V:The Empire Strikes Back, 1980, Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher

 6.     Young Frankenstein, 1974, Gene Wilder, Madeline Kahn and Peter Boyle

7.     Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl, 2003, Johnny Depp, Orlando Bloom and Keira Knightly

8.     Monsters, Inc., 2001, Billy Crystal and John Goodman

9.     You Can’t Take It With You, 1938, Jean Arthur, Jimmy Stewart and Lionel Barrymore

10.  Road to Morocco, 1942, Bob Hope, Bing Crosby and Dorothy Lamour

It’s tough to narrow it down to ten. I could add another fifty without any trouble. These ten aren’t necessarily the movies I quote most often, or watch constantly. Some of these I haven’t seen in years, but when I think about them, I smile. I laugh. I remember the message they gave me.

Do you have to make your own list? Of course not. But if you have some free time with your family this next week, I challenge you to turn it into a game. Turn off the TV and let everyone just sit and relax. Have each person go around the room and list their favorite movies and tell why they love them. There is no right or wrong answer. It’s just what you enjoy. It doesn’t have to be ten; it could be five or maybe even just one.

Just talk with each other. Share your likes and dislikes. I think it’s fun to see who likes which movie—it sometimes speaks volumes about a person. You may find you have more in common with your quiet cousin than you think. It’s a wonderful (and not too threatening) way to connect with your family.

That’s a wrap for this Toast to Cinema. Thanks for reading!

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