Friday, June 8, 2012

League Assignment: My Top Ten Favorite Movies


So, I'm sitting down at McDonald's, about to take a bite of my Quarter Pounder with Cheese and my cell phone goes off. There is a voice mail alert, so I opt to listen to it before I tear into my burger. I hear a voice, male, speaking of an assignment from the League of Extraordinary Bloggers. The recording says: "Mr. Phelps (Who's Phelps?), The past couple of weeks, you have been absent from the League. This week however, the task is a rather simple one. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, will be to list your top ten favorite movies, no matter how weird or out there they may be. This phone will self destruct in ten seconds."

11 seconds later, I and everyone else is clearing the McDonalds due to smoke and fire. Who do I send the bill to for the new phone I bought?

So, listing my ten favorite movies was a lot harder than I thought. Movies I thought would be on this list, was pushed aside for a movie I could just watch over and over again. So, I have quite the eclectic list of sci fi, comedies, dramas, classic and not so classic movies. What's weird to me personally, as much as a superhero fan I am, there is only 1 superhero movie on my list and it's not the one you think it might be.

So, with out further ado, I give you my list:

10-Mall Rats


The second of Kevin Smith's movies happens to be my favorite of his. This movie had comic book references, cookies, love lost, chocolate covered pretzles, Three's Company boobies and Stan Lee. What should have been an Academy Award winning picture instead tanked at the box office. But is now considered a cult classic and people all over are familir with the phrase, "Snoochie Boochies"

9-The Apartment


The first of 3 Jack Lemmon movies that made my list. Lemmon is one of my all time favorite actors and this movie has him at his best. In this movie, he plays C.C. Baxter, an office worker at an insurance in NYC, who allows some of his higher ups use of his apartment for their affairs. In turn, they write glowing reviews about C.C, which raise the suspicions of the personnel director, Mr. Sheldrake (Played by Fred MacMurry), who allows the promotion C.C was given to go through, provided Mr. Sheldrake is the only one using the apartment for HIS affairs. During all this, C.C is vying for the affections of Miss Kublick, played by Shirley McLaine. During the company Christmas party, C.C. accidently finds out that Miss Kublick is the one Mr. Sheldrake is seeing. Cheating husbands, corporate politics, backstabbing and Gin Rummy, aside from wonderful performances, a well written and directed movie, make this a must see movie.

8-Sunset Blvd


Another Billy Wilder movie makes my list (Wilder has 3 movies in total on my list). In Sunset Boulevard, Norma Desmond is an aging, forgotten silent movie star, who is plotting her comeback with a film she wrote. Joe Gillis is a struggling writer who accidently winds up in the employ of Norma, fixing the script she wrote. As Joe works on her script, Norma falls in love with Joe and lures him into her fantasy world that her butler, Max, helped create by writing her "fan letters" and claiming "Madame is the greatest actress who has ever lived". This movie proved to be a comeback for Gloria Swanson, who was a silent movie actress and a breakthrough role for William Holden.

7-The Odd Couple


In what would be Jack Lemmon's and Walter Matthau's second film pairing, The Odd Couple would be the one they are most remembered for. 2 divorced men, one a neat freak who is a great cook and the nicest guy and the other a slob who enjoys beer, sports and women, decide to share an apartment, but before long one gets on the other's nerves. This is also the only movie on my list that the New York Mets are featured in.

6-Superman The Movie


The only superhero movie on my list and it's not a Spider-Man or Batman film. Although The Avengers was an awesome, awesome movie, I still consider this picture to be the greatest superhero movie ever made. No one could or has played Superman as well as Christopher Reeve has. This movie is the blueprint on how to make a successful comic book movie without being too campy. Still holds up 34 years after it's release.

5-Star Wars


One of the first movies to capture my imagination as a kid. I wanted to be Luke Skywalker, battling Darth Vader, shooting at Stormtroopers, swinging Leia to saftey while learning the ways of The Force. Heck, I still want to be Luke. The bad ass Luke that is a Jedi Knight with the cool black outfit and green lightsaber he made himself because he lost his when his dad chopped off his hand during a family spat. That actually sounds more like a Montell Williams special rather than one of the many plots of arguably, the greatest Sci-Fi franchise ever, with apologies to all you Trekies.

4-Some Like It Hot


Ok, ok. I promise this is the last time you will see Jack Lemmon or a Billy Wilder movie on this list. But really, this movie, even today, is just so funny. Jack Lemmon and Tony Curtis are so funny together that one wonders why they never made another picture together. Marilyn Monroe is soooooooo hot in this movie and plays the dumb blonde so well. This is one of those movies I can just watch over and over again.

3-A Hard Days Night


The Beatle-maniac in me loves this movie. It had catchy tunes, funny moments and who knew the Beatles could pull off a feature film and pull it off so well. What was billed as a "Day In The Life of The Beatles" was more like a Marx Brothers movie with a Rock n Roll soundtrack and British accents. Wilfrid Brambell, who plays Paul's Grandfather almost steals the show. All four Beatles have their moments in the spotlight as they encounter advertising exectutives, neurotic television directors, fans, their manager and grumpy train passengers. To me, the best Rock n Roll movie ever made.

2-Pride Of The Yankees


Yep, any chance I get to slip my Yankees into my blog I will take. But seriously, if you have not seen this movie, you need to be hit. Hit hard with a blunt object. This movie, as Triple H might say, it's that damn good. So good that I was toying with the idea of making this my favorite movie of all time. Gary Cooper is spectacular as Lou Gehrig, the iconic Yankee who ultimately dies of ALS, or to what's commonly called these days as Lou Gehrig's Disease. The movie follows Gehrig from his childhood days in NY, his college days, where he looks like an older Gary Cooper, to his days as a Yankee and ends with his famous speech at Yankee Stadium. Babe Ruth, Bill Dickey, Mark Koenig and Bob Meusel are former Yankee teamates of Gehrig's who play themselves in the movie. Teresa Wright shines as Elenor Gehrig as well as Elsa Janssen and Ludwig Stossel as his parents. The movie does take some Hollywood liberties, but it's still a touching story of a remarkable baseball player and an even more remarkable human.

1-Back To The Future


Ok, maybe this movie is not as good as some I have previously mention. Maybe it's not as well recieved or won as many awards. Who cares?? It's my list and I say it's my all time favorite movie. It has all the elements of a great movie: Comedy, skateboarding, a love story, music, conflict and the best looking time machine ever invented. This was the movie I drove my family crazy watching on the old VHS machines that doubled as the family car. I watched over and over and over again. I was careful not to break the tape as a movie back then cost a lot more than they do now. I was in Jr High at the time and started skateboarding to school cause Marty did it, even though I was never really any good at it and almost killed myself going down a huge hill near where I lived. I wish Universal would revive this franchise somehow ( an animated feature with the original actor's voices perhaps?) and Mattel, where the heck are our Back To The Future toys?? I can't get enough of this movie. In fact, I want to watch it right now, never mind the fact that it's 2 am and I have work in the morning.

So, that's my list. Check out the other League members lists and see how they stack up to mine or even yours


All comments are appreciated. I'd love to know what your list is, so leave it in the comments section. It may not be the best list, but it's my list, all mine! Mwhahahahahaha!