Dave's Favorite Movies (in alphabetical order)

Let me explain something. Some of my favorite movies were chosen because there was a scene in them that was truly memorable or the movie evoked a pleasant emotion or memory. I am not saying that each of these fliks is one of the all time greats in cinematic history. Some of the truly "great films" that I have seen really would not qualify as a favorite, nor would I want to see some of them again. And remember, "taste can't be disputed." (I would have quoted that in Latin but didn't want to seem pretentious.)

1. 2001 (Ventures into some new cinematic territory. It was a prototype for many films to follow.)

2. A History of Violence. This could very easily become a cult film. The story concerns a small town guy, Tom Stall- played by Viggo Mortensen, who is an ideal father, husband, and citizen. He runs a small downtown restaurant. His wife, Edie, an attorney played by Maria Bello, is very much in love with him and thinks there is plenty of magic left in their marriage. She even puts on a cheerleader's costume to seduce him one evening when the kids are away. One day two really lowlife criminals make a detour in their crime spree and come into Tom's restaurant. They plan rape and murder but Tom gets the drop on them and uses one of their own guns to dispatch them in short order. Naturally he become a hero and makes the national news. This brings to town some even more unsavory mobsters who have seen his picture on TV and are certain he is a long missing killer from back east for whom they bear a nasty grudge. Viggo does a marvelous job in this part. The young actor who plays Tom's son is also good as a high schooler who is being bullied by a larger classmate until his dad's exploits encourage him to stand up for himself. There is some graphic violence in this flik, but this is really not a movie about violence. It is about a person's identity and who a person is, at heart. This is one of the best films I have seen in a while.

3. Amadeus ( F. Murray Abraham is superb as Salieri, the Italian composer who is consumed with his jealousy for Mozart, played by Tom Hulce, yet he is torn because he so deeply admires his music. Furthermore his faith in God is shaken by the fact that Mozart is blasphemous and seems to put out little effort in creating his masterpieces, while the God-fearing and hard working Salieri can't seem to write comparable music. It is sad that we haven't seen Tom Hulce in any more films of this caliber, but he has been active in film and on the stage as both actor and director and has been nominated and has won acting awards since his tour de force performance in Amadeus. Interestingly Abraham has never made another film of this magnitude either.)

4. Americanization of Emily, The (Paddy Chayefsky wrote the script and it is one of the best bits of dialogue ever written for a movie. The cast is top-notch: James Garner, Julie Andrews, James Coburn, Melvin Douglas, Edward Binns, and William Windom. I think I read someplace that this was Jim Garner's favorite flik- it certainly is my favorite Garner film. It is a romance veiled in both comedy and drama and it must certainly be considered one of the most articulate and poignant anti-war statements ever made. I have seen this film several times over the years and each time I see something new.)

5. An Affair to Remember (Corny, but can still elicit a tear after almost 50 years.)

6. Apartment, The (In my opinion, Jack Lemmon's best film)

7. As Good as it Gets (Another great Jack Nicholson flik. Greg Kinnear and Helen Hunt give near perfect performances. Nicholson causes great anxiety in his portrayal of a deeply neurotic obsessive-compulsive who is driven to change himself by his relationship with a waitress played by Hunt. Kinnear plays his gay neighbor, who he is forced to take care of after a robbery-beating.)

8. Babbette's Feast (Danish film about a female French chef who escapes the political turmoil at home to become the cook and housekeeper for two elderly sisters in a small fishing Danish village. The sisters were the daughters of the village Lutheran priest who discouraged them from leaving him when both of them could have had a better life- one as an opera singer, the other as the wife of a young officer who later became a general. When Babette wins the lottery she decides to spend the money on a great feast for her employers and their friends who have lived very Spartan existences all their lives.)

9. Baby Boom ( Diane Keaton's best film in my opinion. Diane plays a high-powered business woman whose life is suddenly torn apart when she "inherits" a 2 year old cousin who has been recently orphaned. In a life-changing decision she opts to move to a small Vermont town to raise the child. She buys an old house which turns out to be a disaster, but when all seems lost her business instincts come to the rescue and she starts making and marketing "gourmet" baby food. Keaton's chemistry with co-star, Sam Shepard, is palpable. He, in turn, is priceless as the small town veterinarian who at first turns her off and then turns her on.)

10. Back to the Future (Prototype film which "made" Michael J. Fox in the cinema.)

11. Barefoot in the Park (Although not a Jane Fonda fan, I think this was her best comedic role as well as Robert Redford's. Mildred Natwick and Charles Boyer are priceless in the supporting cast.)

12. Being There (Seller's best performance- not really his best movie)

13. Bell, Book, and Candle (Wonderful romantic comedy with Kim Novak and Jimmy Stewart. Probably Kim's best acting. Jack Lemmon, Ernie Kovacs, Elsa Lanchester, and Hermione Gingold are all fantastic in this story of a modern witch who lives in Manhatten and casts a spell on Stewart.)

14. Ben Hur (Probably Heston's best role. Jack Hawkins, Stephen Boyd, and Hugh Griffith are in top form.)

15. Big (One of many brilliant Tom Hanks performances. The scene with Hanks and Robert Loggia dancing to "Chopsticks" on the oversized piano keyboard is a classic of modern cinema. Hanks' portrayal of 12 year old Josh Baskin is totally believable and this performance foreshadows great things to come for the actor.

16. Big Easy, The (Dennis Quaid at his best. The chemistry between Ellen Barkin and Quaid is steamy, but the supporting cast makes this rather ordinary detective story work.)

17. Body Double, The (A quirky indie which has Craig Wasson playing an aspiring out of work actor who just so happens to have claustrophobia. He is asked to do some house-sitting for a friend and witnesses a crime in a neighboring house with a telescope ostensibly set up for star gazing. Melanie Griffith has a smaller part. This flik exemplifies the indie film that is so much better than much of the mainstream wide-distribution releases. It is pure joy to watch.)

18. Body Heat ( Very steamy film with Kathleen Turner as a bored wife of wealthy business man played by Richard Crenna. She has an affair with William Hurt and wants him to dispatch her husband so that they can "be together" with hubby's money. We have seen this plot before, but probably not this well done.)

19. Boys from Brazil, The ( Great performances by Gregory Peck, who plays Dr. Joseph Mengele who has cloned a strain of boys and planted them in families all over, and Lawrence Olivier, who plays Ezra Lieberman, an aging Jewish nazi hunter who is tracking down Mengele. Weird coincidence- Bruno Ganz who plays Dr. Bruckner in this film plays Fernando Girasoli, the leading man in the next film on my list, Bread and Tulips.)

20. Bread and Tulips (Charming film about an Italian housewife who is taken for granted by her husband and two teenage sons and even forgotten in a truck stop on the family vacation. She decides to hitch-hike back home rather than catch up with her family and ends up spending the night in Venice. When she can't find a hotel room for the night, she stays with the waiter in the restaurant where she eats dinner. She ends up getting a job and staying in Venice and her husband hires a private detective to find her.)

21. Breakfast at Tiffany's ( No explanation needed although this movie has become somewhat dated)

22. Bridge on the River Kwai (This war film is timeless. Alec Guiness in an Oscar role with great turns by William Holden, Jack Hawkins, and Sessue Hayakawa. British prisoners are ordered to build a bridge in WW2 Burma. At first the British officers refuse to cooperate, but after torture the British colonel decides to build a "proper" bridge to show the Japanese just how disciplined and talented his men can be. He brushes aside any objections by saying that the project will give the men something keep their minds occupied. )

23. Bye Bye Birdie (Great musical that rocketed Ann-Margret to fame. Co-stars Dick Van Dyke and Janet Leigh are top-notch, as is Paul Lynde in the supporting cast. It seems that a rock idol that is drafted into the army and Kim McAfee, a typical teenage girl is chosen in a publicity stunt to give Elvis clone, Conrad Birdie, just one last kiss on national TV before his being inducted. His arrival in the McAfee's small town with Van Dyke orchestrating it causes near pandemonium.)

24. Caine Mutiny, The (Humphrey Bogart proves again that he is not just another pretty face. His portrayal of Captain Queeg is the stuff cinema classics are made of. His performance in The African Queen was probably his tour de force but this is a close second. Supporting cast is incredible here-Van Johnson, Fred MacMurray, Jose Ferrar, Tom Tully all shine.)

25. Can't Buy Me Love (Cute teen movie. Patrick Dempsey's best flik about a nerd who aspires to date the beautiful and popular girl next door who doesn't know he is alive. When she wears and ruins a very expensive outfit of her mom's, he steps in and replaces it with his savings. In return the girl agrees to date him for a month and "make him popular." This film has a bit more plot and better performances than 90% of the genre.)

26. Captain Horatio Hornblower (The Gregory Peck-Virginia Mayo version is the classic sea-faring swashbuckler. Great performances and good production values. This movie takes some liberties and combines two or more of the Hornblower novels, but is very true to the spirit of the series.)

27. Captain Ron---really cute comedy with Kurt Russell, Martin Short, and Mary Kay Place. Short has inherited an aged yacht once owned by Clark Gable that is noe moored on some back-water Caribbean island and he has to sail it back to Miami to sell it. He hires "Capt. Ron," played by Russell, to help him and gets way more than he bargained for. If there was ever any doubt as to the versatility of Kurt Russell, this flik will dispell it.)

28. Cash McCall (Pulp fiction style romance with James Garner playing a very wealthy "take-over king" who is interested in the company owned by Natalie Woods' father played by Dean Jagger. Excellent supporting cast and good dialog elevate this film into more than it should have been.)

29. Chances Are (Fun romantic comedy with Robert Downey, Jr., Cybill Sheperd, Ryan O'Neal, and Mary Stuart Masterson. The dead husband of Sheperd and father of Masterson has "come back" re-incarnated in the body of Downey although he doesn't know it. This movie gave O'Neal a much needed career boost at the time.)

30. Charade ( Classic Cary Grant suspense-comedy. Audrey Hepburn is wonderful as Regina Lampert, a newly widowed translator whose husband hadn't really told her anything about his past-especially having stolen several hundred thousand dollars during WW2 and cheating his partners out of the loot. Naturally they are all in Paris looking for the money after his mysterious death. Grant seems to be her friend or is he? The Henry Mancini music is mildy dated now but was a super hit when the movie was released. And by contrast, the Givenchy clothes that Audrey wore have a timeless quality.)

31. Chocolat (Juliet Binoche from the "English Patient" plays a mysterious single mom who literally "blows" into a small French village only to set up a chocolaterie in the middle of lent. The townsfolk either love her or hate her. Her chemistry with Johnny Depp is terrific. The supporting cast is merveilleuse- Judy Dench, Lena Olin, Alred Molina, Leslie Caron, etc. The music and photography are enchanting which helps weave the spell in this modern fairy tale. Although there are a few moral lessons to be taught the director is not heavy handed in teaching us.)

32. Christmas Carol, The—with Reginal Owen (There have been several versions including a very good one with George C. Scott and a musical version with Albert Finney. My favorite looks to me like it was made in London in the 1840's.

33. Christmas Story, The (This flik was a pure delight the first time I saw it. It recreated life and Christmas in the late 1940's to a tee for those of us who were there at the time. Darren McGavin and Melinda Dillon are perfect as the parents. Peter Billingsley was priceless as "Ralphie." The story concerns a young boy's burning desire to get a Red Ryder Daisy BB gun for Christmas.)

34. Cider House Rules, The (Somewhat stylized but rich story about a young boy growing up in an orphanage in Maine where the doctor in charge is played by Michael Caine. Tobey Maguire plays the boy who goes off to work in a cider house and learn about life.)

35. Circle of Friends ( Coming of age story concerns Minnie Driver going off from her small Irish town to Dublin to college. She meets Chris O'Donnell and falls in love. But there are lots of complications along the way. We get an early looks at Saffron Burrows who plays Nan, her friend who aspires to marry the son of a wealthy landowner played by Colin Firth. Also we see Alan Cumming in one of his early villainous roles, and Ciaran Hinds as the professor who lectures to them about the sexually uninhibited natives in the south seas. More recently he is playing the Russian president in "The Sum of All Fears.")

36. Closet, The (French comedy with Daniel Auteuil as a milktoast accountant in a factory that manufactures condoms. He accidently overhears a conversation between co-workers saying that he is about to be laid-off. He is despondent and tells his older gay neighbor who offers him a plan that will save his job. He must let it be "leaked" that he is gay and the company will not dare fire him lest he sue them for discrimination. Gerard Depardieu plays a crude gay-basher co-worker that the company's execs decide to teach a lesson in tolerance. Michele Laroque plays his female boss who sees him as a challenge.)

37. Count of Monte Christo, The ( The Richard Chamberlain version is a sentimental favorite, but the newest version with James Caviezel and Guy Pearce runs a close second. The latest rendition ends the way that Dumas should have ended it after putting Edmond Dantes through hell.)

38. Court Jester, The ( The other Danny Kaye movie worth watching along with "Merry Andrew." This time Kaye's character is a Robin Hood wannabe who is relegated to entertaining the merry men and taking care of the baby who is heir to the throne and who has been forced into hiding after his family has been killed by a usurper. In order to get into the castle he impersonates(why are we not surprised) a famous jester, Jacopo, "king of jesters and jester to the king." There are some priceless scenes in the movie like when "Jacopo" is being inducted into knighthood at double-time so that he can face Sir Griswold and certain death. Also when he drinking a toast prior to the joust, he gives his "the vessel with the pestle and the flagon with the dragon routine.")

39. Crash- with a great ensemble cast- Matt Dillon, Don Cheadle, Brendan Fraser, Sandra Bullock (in a serious role), and Thandie Newton. Screenplay was by Paul Haggis who also wrote Million Dollar Baby. We really liked this "tapestry" type story where eventually all the characters are tied together. It was a film that I wanted to last longer so that they might develop several of the characters a bit more. It was a lot more than some "burned out L.A. cop" story. The subject matter was racial interactions in a melting pot city. There were two very powerful scenes in the flik in which characters that you viewed one way initially had a chance to redeem themselves. Fine performances, good script, and pacing that never drug for even a minute.

40. Crimson Pirate, The (Burt Lancaster's athletic swashbuckler about a pirate who is pulled into a rebellion on a Caribbean island because of his infatuation with a beautiful girl. Nick Cravat, his real life sidekick, plays his right-hand man and the supporting cast is filled with such jewels as Torin Thatcher as Humble Bellows. The girl is played by Eva Bartok and look for Christopher Lee of Dracula fame in a smaller secondary role.)

41. Crossing Delancey (Amy Irving plays Isabelle, a girl who works in prestigious Manhatten bookstore, who rubs elbows with intellectual but shallow writers that she fantasizes about. Meanwhile her little Jewish "bubbie" or grandmother is setting her up with a suitor by way of the local matchmaker played over the top by Silvia Miles. Peter Riegert is the nice comfortable man from the neighborhood with his own business that is intended for Isabelle but she can't see past the fact that he works in a pickle store and smells of vanilla, which he uses to cover the briny odor. Jeroen Krabbe plays a self-centered author who is interested in a temporary relationship with Isabelle and is sweeping her off her feet with his sophistication and celebrity. Look for David Hyde Pierce in a small supporting role as a co-worker at the bookstore.)

42. Croupier (Breakthrough role for Clive Owen. This is a very stylized flik about a man, Jack Manfred, who aspires to be a wiriter. He is deeply in the throes of writer's block when he receives a call from his estranged father who has arranged a job interview for him as a croupier at a London casino. It is obvious in his "tryout" that he has done this sort of thing before. Jack ostensibly takes the job as material for his book but we can tell that he is being sucked back into a world that he had once been free of. Gina McKee from Notting Hill plays his live-in girlfriend who hopes his job is only temporary.)

43. Damn Yankees (Film version of smash Broadway hit. Tab Hunter can barely tread water in his role as Joe Hardy the younger version of a 55 year old man who has made a pact with the devil to play major league baseball with the Washington Senators so they can beat those "Damn Yankees." Gwen Verdon created the role of the temptress, Lola, on the stage as is electrifying when she sings "Whatever Lola wants, Lola gets" and when she sings and dances with her then real-life husband, Bob Fosse, in "Steam Heat." Ray Walston is perfect as Mr. Applegate, the devil. The movie is filled with other show-stoppers like "You Gotta Have Heart," and "Shoeless Joe from Hannibal Mo.")

44. Dave ( My favorite Kevin Kline flik. Can't agree with all the politics but it was good fun in this best of this "common man impersonating the president" genre.)

45. Day of the Jackal, The (Probably the best "manhunt" film ever made. Edward Fox, as "the Jackal" is first rate as is the entire cast)

46. Death Wish (The original is a classic cult film with especially good work from Vincent Gardenia as the detective pursuing the "vigilante." None of the sequels captured the somber, desparate mood of Charles Bronson's character as a man who is devastated by the senseless murder of his wife in a city where it almost goes unnoticed. Bronson is a wonderful "everyman" who searches for some kind of meaning to his existence through a series of killings where the sheep turns on the wolves.)

47. Diamond Men (Another marvelous xlittlex film about a type of protagonist we see little of these days- a 59 year old man who is widowed. This one, named Eddie, has just had a heart attack and has been told that he can no longer work at the job he has held for 30 years: a diamond salesman for a large jewelry company. He is no longer insurable to carry the $1million plus inventory around with him to his territory of small town jewelry stores in southern Pennsylvania. He has been told to break in a new young fellow as a replacement. His young protégé wants to set him up with some female companionship and ends up asking the xmadamx in a brothel he frequents to find his older friend someone suitable. She pairs him off with Bess Armstrong who is in retirement from the trade but agrees to help out. This independent film again exemplifies the rich stories and good acting we have come to expect from the non-main stream, non-general release movie.)

48. Dirty Harry (These movies were manipulative but we gladly went along for the ride in the police car when Harry shot the miscreants and scofflaws full of holes. Harry is "drawn" so big as to be almost a caricature of the super detective who not only has to fight crime everywhere he looks but police bureaucracy and ineptitude as well.)

49. Doc Hollywood (Refreshing romantic comedy with arguably Michael J. Fox's best performance to date. Supporting cast is a delight in this story of an ambitious young prospective plastic surgery resident on his way to Beverly Hills for an interview with a famous specialist. He is waylaid in a small Georgia town that is in desperate need of a young doctor to replace the ancient family doc who is starting to show his age. Everybody in town is out to convince him to stay. He ends up falling for a beautifual young ambulance driver who is a single mom, but he can't convince her to move west with him.)

50. Doctor Zhivago (This movie is a classic. Omar Sharif is Dr. Zhivago. In fact it may have type-cast him to his own detriment. Julie Christie embodied "Lara," Zhivago's true love. Rod Steiger, Ralph Richardson, Tom Courtenay, and Geraldine Chaplin all give marvelous performances. The scenery and production values are over the top. The musical score was Oscar quality as well.)

51. Don't Tell Her It's Me (Probably Shelly Long's best flik to date. Good performances by Steve Guttenberg and Jamie Gertz in a cute romantic comedy of the mistaken identity genre.)

52. Dr. Strangelove (Darkest of the dark comedies concerning the Armageddon scenario if somebody pushed the button and set off a chain of unstoppable events leading to global nuclear war. It was the source of such lines as: "You can't fight in here- this is the war room." This movie set the bar for many years to follow. Peter Sellers, George C. Scott, Slim Pickens, etc. are all right on.)

53. Dreamscape (Very inventive sci-fi film with great cast- Dennis Quaid, Max Von Sydow, Eddie Albert, Christopher Plummer, Kate Capshaw, and David Patrick Kelly as Tommy Lee. Max is doing research about entering people's dreams as a way of helping them with psychiatric problems, but naturally the government, in the person of Plummer, sees more sinister "benefits" to be gleaned.)

54. Emma (Both versions are delightful- the Gwyneth Paltrow movie and the Kate Beckinsale mini series. Kate is slightly better at Emma and Jeremy Northam is better as Mr. Knightly.)

55. English Patient, The (One of the best movies in the last 10 years. Stellar performances by Ralph Fiennes, Juliet Binoche, Kristen Scott-Thomas, Willem Dafoe, and Colin Firth.)

56. Enigma ( Kate Winslet, Dougray Scott, Jeremy Northam star in this story set in Bletchley Park where the British broke the German codes used in their "unbreakable cypher machine called "enigma." This is a fascinating story about a young mathematician who is recovering from a breakdown due to stress and overwork. He returns to work only to find his ex-girlfriend there at Bletchley has come up missing under mysterious circumstances.

57. Fargo (Cinema noir set against the pure white backdrop of winter in North Dakota. Frances McDormand, William Macy, Steve Buscemi give terrific performances here. Macy works for his wealthy father-in-law in the auto business and is in danger of being discovered with his hand in the till unless he can quickly come up with some cash. He plots with some marginal characters to kidnap his wife so that he can extract a ransom from her father.Given the level of competance of the conspirators things naturally go haywire. A highway patrolman and an innocent couple are murdered when things get out of control. McDormand plays a very pregnant sheriff whose men discover the bodies. She is much more savvy than she lets on to the men that work for her as she doggedly pursues the killers. )

58. Femme Fatale- directed by Brian DePalma. This flik had layers of complexity, nuances, veiled and not so veiled internal and external references. There were elements of Run Lola Run, La Femme Nikita, and several Hitchcock films. There was a duality that pervaded not only the cinematography vis-a-vis the split screen in several scenes, but the characters and plot as well. The basic plot concerns a female member of a French jewel heist gang who double-crosses her partners and finds herself on the "lam" and trying to escape to the US and something like a normal life. She marries an American businessman who becomes a diplomat and unfortunately (for her) his job relocates him to Paris. Now she is in constant danger of being found out. Rebecca Romijn-Stamos plays the female lead, Laure Ash. Antonio Banderas plays Nicolas Bardo, the semi-lowlife paparazzi who is a real threat to Laure.

59. Fiddler on the Roof (One of the top 10 musicals of all time. Topol plays Tevye, the poor Russian Jewish milkman with five daughters. This show goes from one show-stopper to the next: "Tradition," "If I were a Rich Man," "Matchmaker, Matchmaker," and "Sunrise, Sunset." to name a few. There is also a very rich story behind this musical which is not often the case. This film is filled with emotionality as it touches almost all the bases in human existence: love, hate, marriage, family, tradition, religion, prejudice, and more. This is not film I want to see more than once every 10 years but yet it bowls me over every time. We saw it on the London stage in 1970 with some Jewish friends who were moved to tears in a couple of places as were we. This movie speaks to everyone except maybe Arab terrorists.)

60. Four Feathers (Wonderful story of a British army officer who resigns his commission on the eve of his regiment's departing for the war in Egypt. Although the reasons have nothing to do with cowardice, his motives are misunderstood and he is given 4 white feathers, a sign of cowardice, by three of his friends and his fiancee. He then goes to Egypt on his own to prove himself, and in so doing, saves the lives of his friends and ultimately wins back his fiancee. Sir Ralph Richardson and C. Aubrey Smith are probably the only actors anyone will recognize. This was a British film made in 1939 and did not get widespread distribution. This story has been remade several times but none of the newer versions capture the flavor of this version.)

61. Four Weddings and a Funeral (Independent film that made good and couldn't be ignored. This is the film that really launched Hugh Grant. Andie McDowell is terrific as is the entire cast which included Kristin Scott Thomas, Simon Callow, and John Hannah. The actors and the acting elevate this film way beyond what it should have been.)

62. Frenzy/Vertigo/ North by Northwest/ the Birds by Hitchcock (All great must-see Hitchcock films for any serious student of the cinema.)

63. From Here to Eternity (Burt Lancaster, Deborah Kerr, Donna Reed, Frank Sinatra, Montgomery Clift, Ernest Borgnine all are standouts in this film about life in the army barracks in Hawaii in the last innocent days before Pearl Harbor was attacked. The steamy love scene in the surf with Lancaster is a cinema classic and was much imitated and lampooned. Sinatra won a best supporting actor Oscar for his role as Maggio.)

64. Get Shorty (Just when you think that John Travolta's fourth or fifth career is in jeopardy, he hits you with another film like this or "Pulp Fiction." The performances by Travolta, Rene Russo, Gene Hackman, Danny DeVito, Dennis Farina, and James Gandolfini are over the top.)

65. Godfather 1 and 2 (All kind of popular culture has sprung from these books and movies: "He sleeps with the fishes," and "Go to the mattresses," to name a couple. These films were extremely well casted, acted, filmed, produced, etc.)

66. Gone with the Wind (Where have you been if you haven't seen this movie at least 2 or 3 times?)

67. Graduate, The (The film that launched Dustin Hoffman's career. Somewhat dated now but still has excellent performances by Anne Bancroft, Murray Hamilton, and Katherine Ross in a story of a young man just finishing up college and returning to spend the summer with his family.)

68. Grease (Very good adaptation of the smash Broadway musical. Very energetic and loaded with hormones bubbling over in high school as greaser Danny tries to win "goody two shoes" Sandy. Some of the songs became top 40 hits in their own right. One torch song by Stockard Channing is particularly good, "There are worse things I could do." )

69. Grease II (Even though this movie didn't get near the reviews of Grease, I liked it. Michelle Pfeifer showed signs of great things to come and Maxwell Caulfield was very convincing as the young immigrant from England who is smitten with Stephanie Zinone, played by Pfeifer. In order to win her heart he must become a "cool rider" and in so doing becomes a mystery guy behind a motorcycle helmet visor. The songs, "Cool Rider", "Who's That Guy?", and "Reproduction" were top notch in my opinion.)

70. Green Card (Gerard Depardieu and Andie McDowell star in this very cute comedy about a Frenchman who marries an American girl so he can stay in this country. Look for Bebe Neuwirth as the girlfriend who sees more in the "husband" than McDowell.)

71. Ground Hog Day (One of my favorite movies of all time. I see something new every time I watch it. Bill Murray is well directed and "contained," but the story is the thing. Egotistical weatherman is locked into February 2nd until he gets it right. We get to see real character development with not a few blind alleys thrown in as our "hero" tries to reason his way out of this time "cul-de-sac." This is, by far, Harold Ramis's best directorial effort.)

72. He Said-She Said (One of best romantic comedies of modern times. Musical score is terrific. Kevin Bacon and Elizabeth Perkins have great chemistry. Can't figure out why they didn't make more movies together. First half of film is the story told by a man and directed by a man and second half is the story re-told by a woman and directed by a woman.)

73. Hidden, The (Early Kyle McLachlan flik with Michael Nouri. Familiar plot about an evil alien presence that takes over the bodies of humans and other life forms and then transfers itself to another "vehicle" when it has effectively used up the present one. This movie is just better at it than most. Kyle's character is sort of an intergalactic policeman sent here to destroy the evil one.

74. High Noon (Another of the top 10 westerns of all time. Probably Gary Cooper's best role. The entire cast is superb. Cooper is getting married to Grace Kelly when word arrives that a killer that he sent to prison has been pardoned and is coming in on the noon train. The haunting theme, "Do not forsake me, oh my darlin" sung by Tex Ritter punctuates the story throughout. Cooper's performance was Oscar quality.)

75. Hopscotch ( Cute, but dated comedy with Walther Matthau and Glenda Jackson.)

76. Horseman on the Roof (French flik with Juliet Binoche. She is quarantined in a French town and unable to return to her own hometown and much older husband. She meets up with an Italian nobleman who has escaped the "reign of terror" in his own country and stumbles into the house where Juliet is staying. She offers to shelter him if he will take her back to her home.)

77. How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (Film adaptation of smash Broadway hit with Robert Morse playing the role of J. Pierpont Finch which he created on the stage. This comedy concerns a young man climbing his way to success in a large corporation by following the guidelines in a "How to.." book he is reading.)

78. Jackie Brown (Wonderful detective story about a 50-something bail bondsman named Max Cherry, played deftly by Robert Forster who finds himself attracted to a 40 year black flight attendant, Jackie Brown, played by Pam Grier, who had gotten into trouble by smuggling laundered money into the country for a drug lord. The chemistry between Grier and Forster is unexpected but marvelous. The supporting cast includes Bridget Fonda, Robert De Niro, Michael Keaton, and Samuel Jackson. Wow. The book was by Elmore Leonard and the director was Quentin Tarantino. This is a must see.)

79. January Man, The (OK, my real favorite Kevin Kline film. Quirky detective comedy-thriller that is so much fun you never take the danger seriously.)

80. Kiss Me Kate (This highlight of this flik for me was Keenan Wynn and James Whitmore doing a soft-shoe to "Brush Up Your Shakespeare," but all the songs and dance numbers are Cole Porter classics.)

81. Klute (Moody film noir about a detective, Donald Sutherland, who gets to know and ultimately falls in love with a prostitute played by Jane Fonda.)

82. LA Confidential (If you haven't seen this movie, you have missed a good old-fashioned detective story with great performances by Kim Basinger, Kevin Spacey, Russell Crowe and Guy Pearce.)

83. Lantana (This is a Australian movie that has made its way to the US on a tide of accolades. Anthony LaPaglia, Geoffrey Rush, Barbara Hershey, Kerry Armstrong,and Rachael Blake star. To the casual observer this appears to be a murder mystery but it is really a story of how several people's lives interact and cross paths in the course of just a few days. This is one of the few films I have seen that treats woman as three dimensional characters who have minds of their own and are capable of making their own decisions independent of men. The story is much more character driven than plot driven which is unusual for a "cop drama." This film weaves a rich tapestry with all the principals giving strong performances. Geoffrey Rush and Barbara Hershey are totally believable as a couple who have lost a child 2 years before and can't seem to get past it. Anthony LaPaglia, playing an Australian cop for a change (he is an Aussie so no big stretch there) gives a bravado performance of a man in severe burn-out who is having meaningless affair in spite of the fact that he is very much in love with his wife.

84. Laura ( Dated by today's standards, but still a great film. It was best picture in 1944. Dana Andrews is very convincing as the hard boiled cop who falls in love with a portrait of a murdered woman as he unravels the facts of her life. Gene Tierney in the title role, Clifton Webb, Vincent Price, and Judith Anderson round out the cast.)

85. Lawrence of Arabia ( Classic war-adventure film based on the autobiographical story, "The Seven Pillars of Wisdom," by T.E. Lawrence. The film that rocketed Peter O'Toole to fame. Unfortunately he never made another movie that came close to this in quality.)

86. Legends of the Fall

87. Les Voleurs---French with Catherine Daneuve

88. List of Adrian Messenger (One of my personal top 10. George C. Scott playing a retired Scotland Yard type who is pressed into service to solve the mystery of a string of murders. Several mystery cameos by Burt Lancaster, Tony Curtis, Frank Sinatra, and Robert Mitchum. Kirk Douglas plays several characters in various disguises.)

89. Little Shop of Horrors, The (Musical horror movie spoof. Steve Martin is standout as the sadistic dentist, but entire cast is terrific.)

90. Lone Star (One of personal top 10. Wonderful story of a sheriff in a small Texas border town who must solve a 30 year old murder and get out from under the shadow of his father who was also the sheriff and a bigger than life legend. There are at least 2 or 3 subplots and a great cast including Chris Cooper, Matthew McConnaghey, Kris Kristopherson, Frances McDormand, and Elizabeth Pena.)

91. Longest Day, The (Classic WW2 movie with almost every male movie actor of the time in it.)

92. Love Potion # 9 ( This is probably the film that launched Sandra Bullock. It is a very cute comedy that has gone largely unnoticed by the critics and public alike.)

93. Magnificent Seven, The (If you haven't seen this movie you have been in solitary confinement for the last 40 years or you were just born recently.)

94. Malice (One of best mysteries in years. Very good performances by Bill Pullman, Alec Baldwin, Nicole Kidman, and Bebe Neuwirth. Anne Bancroft is marvelous in a cameo as Kidman's alcoholic mother. Don't blink or you will miss Gwyneth Paltrow in an early bit part.)

95. Manchurian Candidate---one of the best films of all time, Sinatraxs best

96. Manhunter--- the first appearance of Hannibal Lector

97. Man's Favorite Sport (Light-weight Rock Hudson and Paula Prentiss film where Rock works in a big sporting goods store and has a reputation for knowing everything about fishing, when in reality he hates to even touch a fish. This is a cute comedy even though there are no great performances by anyone.)

98. Marnie (Dated by today's standards but this was a very avante garde thriller when Hitchcock made it in the 60's. Sean Connery and Tippi Hedron starred in it. One of two movies that Tippi made that counted.)

99. MASH (The movie had an aura that the TV show never captured)

100. Merry Andrew (Danny Kaye only made two good movies and The Court Jester rounds out the set. All Kaye's films centered around mistaken identity and this is no different. He plays a bumbling professor who is on an archeological dig in Surrey when he runs into an Italian circus. Pier Angeli is a beautiful trapeze artist that he can't help fall in love with in spite of the fact he is engaged to someone else back at school. Some great musical numbers.)

101. Midshipman Hornblower (Great TV mini-series with Ioan Gruffudd is wonderful as the greatest fictional naval hero in English literature.)

102. Moonstruck (One of my top 10 favorites. Cher's best performance to date. Nicholas Cage was robbed when not nominated for supporting Oscar for his role. Also great performances by Danny Aiello, Olympia Dukakis, Vincent Gardenia, and John Mahoney. Cher is a young widow who has agreed to marry Aiello who she is not in love with. When he goes to Sicily to visit his dying mother, she meets and falls in love with his brother, played by Cage.)

103. Mostly Martha- German with English subtitles. This is the story of a female chef, Martha, who is wound rather tightly to start with when two major elements of upheaval take place in her life. First, her sister is killed in a car wreck and "leaves" her an 8 year old niece to care for; and then, the owner of the restaurant where she works hires a male Italian sous chef who threatens Martha's domain. Martha is already seeing a psychiatrist as a condition of her continuing to work in the restaurant. She is full of neurotic behavior that mostly endears her to us rather than alienates. She is rather cold and prickly with the child initially as she is with most people, and the Italian chef with his great zest for life is particularly irritating to her. In spite of her lack of human warmth and maternal instincts we are drawn to Martha and are rooting for her. Martina Gedeck(Martha) is a marvelous actress that Americans have missed out on like Franka Potente in Run Lola Run. Martina gives a strong performance as do Maxime Foerste, who plays the niece, and Sergio Castellitto who plays Mario, the sous chef.

104. Mouse that Roared, The (Peter Sellers plays multiple roles in this political satire about a small country that is nearly bankrupt so they declare war on the U.S. so that they can lose and thereby get foreign aid. Unfortunately they win.)

105. Music Man ( One of top ten musicals of all time.)

106. My Fair Lady (Over the top cinematic production of smash Broadway musical, starring Audrey Hepburn and Rex Harrison. Many thought that the part of Eliza Doolittle should have gone to Julie Andrews, who played her on the stage. Musicals don't get much better than this. There are several show-stopper songs that became classics in our culture: "On The Street Where You Live", "Get Me To The Church On Time", The Rain In Spain Stays Mainly On The Plain", "Wouldn't It Be Loverly", "Show Me", and "I Could Have Danced All Night".)

107. Natural, The (Stylized treatment of the Bernard Malmud novel with boffo cast including Robert Redford, Glen Close, Darren McGavin, Wilford Brimley, Robert Foxworthy, Barbara Hershey, etc. Redford plays Roy Hobbs, a "natural" baseball player who goes off to play in the major leagues in the 1920's only to get waylaid in a shooting scandal involving a beautiful mystery woman. Years later he emeges from nowhere to start his career again much later in probably in his late 30's or early 40's. This movie could have been corny but for the earnest efforts of the cast. By the end we are really believing that Hobbs is the "best there ever was." )

108. Night We Never Met, The (Best Matthew Broderick comedy to date. Neil Simon wishes he had written this, I'm sure, since it smacks of his style when he was at his best.)

109. Notting Hill (Although I am not a big Julia Roberts fan, the supporting cast in this flik made it for me- and or course, Hugh Grant.)

110. Okahoma (Wonderful musical with Shirley Jones, Gordon MacRae, Rod Steiger-as Judd Frye, Gloria Graham, and Eddie Albert. This may be Rodgers and Hammerstein's best musical.)

111. Oliver ( The costumes, the scenery, the actors, etc. all go together in this over the top musical based on the super-hit London/Broadway stage play. Ron Moody often steals the show as "Fagin.")

112. Outlaw Josie Wales, The (May be the best Clint Eastwood western.)

113. Panic in Year Zero (Strange Ray Milland flik made in the 50's about Armageddon scenario after atomic attack. I can't say this was a great film, but I liked it. Hey, we all have some old scuffed up shoes we wear because they are comfortable, not because they look good.)

114. Paradise Lagoon or The Admirable Crichton (Very nice little British comedy made in early 50's about a wealthy family whose steam yacht is ship-wrecked on desert island and the butler ultimately takes over leadership of the group in Darwinian fashion. Kenneth More, Diane Cilento(Sean Connery's first wife) and Sally Anne Howes are perfect.)

115. Patton (Probably George C. Scott's masterpiece bio-pic about the egomaniacal WW2 general who the Germans feared more than any other.)

116. Pillow Talk/Lover Come Back (Almost same cast in both movies. These are the two quintessential Doris Day/Rock Hudson films. They were both great comedic actors. These two comedies have excellent scripts and great supporting casts. Both are "mistaken identity" roles for Rock where he gets to ham it up as eccentric scientist or cowboy who is mama's boy.)

117. Possession with Gwyneth Paltrow, Jennifer Ehle(from Pride and Prejudice) and Jeremy Northam(who also played with Paltrow in Emma). It takes place in two time periods: the present where professor Paltrow and a fellow male researcher are looking into a possible but unlikely relationship between a male poet who was married and a lesser known female poet who was not married; and in 1850 where we see what is really happening between the poets, played by Ehle and Northam. It also happens that the female poet is a distant aunt of Paltrow so she has a vested interest in maintaining the status quo in the family reputation, but evidence keeps mounting to change things.

118. Pretty Woman (The supporting cast really made this flik. Hector Elizondo as the hotel manager steals the scenes with Julia Roberts, as does Larry Turner as the manager of the Rodeo Drive boutique with the three gals working for him-Mary Pat, May Kate, and Mary Frances. Richard Gere felt he was underutilized but he was the necessary ingredient to make this romantic comedy work.)

119. Pride and Prejudice. (2005) I was forced to read this novel in college and I probably did the Cliff Notes routine instead. Only years later in the early 90's, did I record the BBC mini-series version for Donna while her sister was visiting and they were unaware it was on. A week or so later, I popped out the tapes and gave them to her. She ranted and raved about how good the first episode was and convinced me to watch the series with her. I was really impressed by how well the production was done. At that time, nobody had ever heard of Colin Firth or Jennifer Ehle. It was the beginning of the Jane Austen craze that brought us Sense and Sensibility with Emma Thompson and Hugh Grant, two versions of Emma- one with Gwyneth Paltrow and the other with Kate Beckinsale, Mansfield Park, and Persuasion with Amanda Root and Ciaran Hinds, etc. So, in my mid-fifties I sat down and really read Jane Austen. She was a brilliant observer and chronicler of her age. And there is no doubt that P&P was her masterpiece and that Elizabeth Bennet was arguably the most richly drawn female character in English literature.

120. Pride and Prejudice—BBC version ( One of my top 10 favorites movies. Starring Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle, this is an almost perfect adaptation of Jane Austen's masterpiece. The scenery, the costumes, the performances are all superb.)

121. Prisoner of Zenda (With Ronald Coleman and Madeleine Carroll, Aubrey Smith and a very young David Niven.)

122. Pulp Fiction ( One of the many career revivals for John Travolta. This quirky film laid the groundwork for future films shot with the time-line out of sequence.)

123. Quest For Fire (This is certainly the best movie I have ever seen about pre-historic man. The story concerns a clan of cavemen who lose their precious "fire" and must send out a search party for a new source. They face various perils along the way in this fascinating adventure. This movie offers keen insights into what it was probably like. Some scenes are a little harsh, but probably very close to the truth.

124. Raiders of the Lost Ark (Quintessential action hero movie with Harrison Ford at his best.)

125. Random Harvest (with Ronald Coleman and Greer Garson)

126. Rear Window (Another classic Hitchcock with Jimmy Stewart, Grace Kelly and Raymond Burr while he was still playing villains.)

127. Rebecca (Almost quaint by today's standards. Nevertheless, there are some fine performances. Hitchcock directed this.)

128. Red, White and Blue trilogy (3 French movies with Julie Delpy, Juliette Binoche)

129. Rio Bravo (Formula John Wayne oater that has Ricky Nelson playing the hotshot)

130. Romancing the Stone (This romance novel spoof clicked on all cylinders because of a great script and very earnest efforts by the entire cast. Kathleen Turner is a top of her career.)

131. Room with a View, A (If you haven't seen this movie, your film experience is not complete. Helena Bonham Carter, Julian Sands, Daniel Day Lewis, Denholm Elliot, Maggie Smith, Judy Dench, and Simon Callow. This E.M. Forster classic is diected by James Ivory who brings great literature to the screen without losing any of the nuances.)

132. Roxanne--- a really good Steve Martin flik and I am not a big Martin fan, but this was a charming little film based loosely on Cyrano de Bergerac.)

133. Sabrina (Audrey Hepburn's best comedy with great turns by William Holden and Humphrey Bogart.)

134. Searchers,The—with John Wayne and Jeff Hunter (One of top 10 westerns of all time)

135. Sense and Sensibility (Emma Thompson, Hugh Grant, Kate Winslett are terrific in this adaptation of Jane Austen classic.)

136. Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (One of top 10 musicals of all time)

137. Seven Days in May (Boffo performances by Burn Lancaster, Kirk Douglas, Ava Gardner, Frederic March, Edmund OBrien, Martin Balsam, Whit Bissel, etc. Story of attempted military coup to overthrow the government.)

138. Shall We Dance? (Best Japanese comedy I ever saw- absolutely charming movie. This is the story of a bored Japanese accountant who sees a beautifula dancing instructor looking wistfully through the studio window and decides to take dancing lessons in the hope of getting to know her. In the process he learns to love dancing and adds a new dimension to his life.)

139. Shane (Another of top 10 westerns. Top cast, beautifully filmed, magnificent cast. Alan Ladd, Van Heflin, Jean Arthur, Jack Palance and Brandon DeWilde are all perfect.)

140. Sideways- a great little film with Paul Giamatti, Thomas Hayden Church, Virginia Madsen, and Sandra Oh. It is the quintessential California story. The story is about two 40ish best friends: Jack, who is an actor, (Church) who once was big on the soaps but now is doing commercials; the other is Miles, a writer (Giamatti) who is teaching 8th grade English waiting for his first big break. They live in San Diego but are heading up to the wine country to spend a carefree week prior to the actor's upcoming marriage. They are both divorced. Miles, the writer, is a wine connoisseur and wants to spend the week tasting wines and playing golf. The actor wants to have one last fling before tying the knot. Jack meets Stephanie (Sandra Oh) who works in a vineyard wine shop and strikes up a relationship with her while neglecting to mention his impending nuptials. Miles, who is still in mourning over his divorce two years ago, reluctantly starts seeing Maya, a waitress (Virginia Madsen) whom he met before on a previous trip. This film does an admirable job of exploring the friendship between the two men while showing us how they view love, sex, and that dreaded, over-used word, "commitment." This film is directed by Alexander Payne who did "Election" and "About Schmidt," which were both deeply satirical films about slices of American life. Like its earlier brethren, "Sideways" also takes a somewhat cynical and comical look at two of our cultural institutions- the bachelor party and the midlife crisis. The script is tight, the dialog fresh, and this film flies by although it runs slightly longer than two hours. Even though the actors names are not household words (you'll instantly recognize their faces), you won't see better acting in a film this year.

141. Silence of the Lambs (The second film appearance for Hannibal Lector. Anthony Hopkins is superb as the brilliant but diabolical serial killer who was known as "Hannibal the Cannibal" for good reason. Jodie Foster and Scott Glenn are very good here as well.)

142. Silk Stockings with Fred Astaire and Cyd Charisse (Cyd at top of her form with the maestro.)

143. Singing in the Rain ( No comment should be needed.)

144. Sixteen Candles (One of best teen movies ever made. Look for a very young John Cusack playing a geek.)

145. Sliding Doors (Intriguing "what if" flik shot in parallel fashion. Gwyneth Paltrow is totally believable as English girl who comes home in middle of the day to find boyfriend in bed with another woman- or does she? John Hannah who played Simon Callow's gay friend in Four Weddings and a Funeral is great as the good and decent suitor)

146. Something about Mary (Bawdy comedy with some raunchy moments but still very funny.)

147. Something's Gotta Give- One of the best romantic comedies in a while. Jack Nicholson and Diane Keeton are marvelous together, the script is tight, and the supporting cast does a great job. Amanda Peet, Keanu Reeves, and Frances McDormand are near perfect. Story concerns a perennial 63 y/o bachelor Nicholson who is dating Amanda Peet who is less than half his age. Because he suffers a mild heart attack he is forced to stay at the beach house of Amanda's mom- Diane Keeton. Although they initially mix like oil and water, the not-so-unexpected thing happens- they fall for each other.

148. Sound of Music, The (I can only watch this about every 15 or 20 years, but I still love the music.)

149. Spanish Prisoner (Quirky mystery with Steve Martin giving a wonderfully understated performance.)

150. Stalag 17 (William Holden's best role. Tragi-comedy set in WW2 prison camp in Germany.)

151. Starman (Jeff Bridges gives an Oscar grade performance playing an extra-terrestrial visitor who falls in love with human female)

152. Sting, The (Shot in sepia tones to create a mood of the Depression, this film scores on several levels not the least of which is the musical score.)

153. Sure Thing, The (Rob Reiner directed John Cusack's first starring vehicle. Ignored by many as a "teen" movie, This movie showed us where Cusack, Daphne Zuniga, Anthony Edwards, and Tim Robbins were heading.)

154. Swimming Pool- with Charlotte Rampling, is a very Hitchcockesque film, even to the music. Story of an English female mystery writer who is suffering burnout symptoms when her publisher suggests that she spend some time at his country house in the south of France. After she ensconces herself in the home, the publisher's 20 year old daughter shows up unexpectedly and says she is also taking some time off from work and is planning to spend a couple of weeks there chilling out. They don't exactly hit it off and while Charlotte's character is trying to rest (but yet get some work done), the daughter is swimming nude in the pool and bringing home a different local guy every night. Since it is a mystery I will not divulge much else. The movie progresses in a very innocent way, in true Hitchcock fashion, but the audience is getting a strong sense of foreboding, not unlike "With a Friend Like Harry" which also took place in the south of France. The acting is flawless, the script keeps you riveted, and the musical score helps weave the web. You will probably discuss this one afterward with the person who sees it with you and the main questions will be around things that are not as they seem. Don't miss it. My explanation of the plot follows. Don't read it if you haven't seen the movie, but after you have seen it, come back and see if you agree with our analysis. We concluded that the writer-lady, Sarah Morton, (Charlotte Rampling) was in a rut and wanted to write something different. In the very beginning of the story, on the tube, she told a fan, "I am not the person you think I am." This likely foreshadowed her renaissance, especially in light of her walking into the publishers "out of the rain" here again probably signifying some kind of baptism or change. And.. she felt that perhaps her publisher was holding her back. Even though he said, "why don't you write something completely different" she didn't feel that he meant it. So when she went to France to stay in his villa, she spoke with him on the phone and said that she was onto something very different, and she was not ready to talk about it. That night she went up to bed and looked out the window- here again probably signifying a "vision" she was now having. I know this sounds like a lot of Freud, but these writers are a symbolically oriented bunch. At any rate, from that moment on, our view (the audience) of her stay in France is all fiction- essentially she is living the story that she is writing. The next time that reality prevails is back at the publisher's office. Predictably, (to her) her publisher doesn't like her new book, and she has already taken steps to have it published elsewhere. Arguably, the man that she and "Julie-the publisher's daughter" polished off was her figuratively killing off her relationship with her publisher. There is an interesting little "plot twist" where Sarah first suspects that something has happened to Franck and goes to try and find him, but she apparently doesn't like the way that story line was winding so she re-writes the sequence the following night and "write herself into" the murder plot and helps Julie bury the victim. At the very end where she sees the publisher's real daughter she muses for a moment and "goes back" to the villa and sees the young girl that was the real daughter swimming in the pool, but slowly she morphs into the daughter that she, Sarah Morton-the writer, had invented and then she smiles broadly- obviously liking her own creation much better than the real thing. Something like that.

155. Taste of Others, The (A wonderful French comedy. Even the supporting roles ares fully fleshed out and we see a rare comodity in films- character development. Basically this is the story of an upper middle class factory owner who is treated as if he doesn't exist by his wife and he falls in love with the lady who is tutoring him in English. She can't see any redeeming qualities in him but her friends all seem to see a depth or a goodness that she is missing. All the supporting roles have a story of their own that just happens to intersect with the central character.)

156. Teacher's Pet (Sophisticated comedy. Maybe Clark Gable's best comedic role. Doris Day and Gig Young also give great performances.)

157. Teen Wolf (Good early flik for Michael J. Fox, who is always good at portraying teen angst.)

158. Third Man, The (Very stylized post-WW2 film shot in war-torn Vienna. Joseph Cotton, Trevor Howard, and Orson Welles- who also directed. I love the zither music that is playing in the background and is often used as punctuation.)

159. Thirty Nine Steps (There are several versions available. My personal favorite is with Kenneth More. A gorgeous Taina Elg is the teacher in this more light-hearted version.

160. Thirty Six Hours (James Garner, Eva Marie Saint, and Rod Taylor, who is miscast as a German doctor, turn in good performances in this WW2 suspense flik.)

161. Three Days of the Condor (Very stylized spy film with Robert Redford, Faye Dunaway, Max Von Sydow, and John Houseman all giving great turns.)

162. Thrill of it All, The (One of best of this genre: Doris Day comedies. The supporting cast in these fliks just blow you away.)

163. Time After Time (Theme and variation on "The Time Machine" with H.G. Wells played by Malcolm McDowell. Good performances by David Warner and Mary Steenbergen.)

164. Time Machine, The (The Rod Taylor version)

165. To Kill a Mockingbird (Wonderful adaptation of best-selling novel. Gregory Peck at his best.)

166. To Sir With Love (Dated by today's standards, but performances still hold up. Look for "Hyacinth Bucket" in the supporting cast as the assistant principal. I think this was Poitier's best film.)

167. Tom Jones (Early Albert Finney film that greatly helped his career.)

168. Tortilla Soup (Hector Elizondo is delightful portraying a chef/restauranteur who is a widower with 3 grown daughters that he would like to see successfully launched into life. Elizabeth Pena, Paul Rodriguez, and Raquel Welch are great in supporting roles.)

169. Trading Places (My favorite Eddie Murphy film and I am not a Murphy fan. Jamie Leigh Curtis did well here as did Dan Akroyd. Not great cinema but everything came together and this movie clicked.)

170. Trancers (underrated sci-fi film that rocketed Tim Thomerson to fame, and was Helen Hunt's first large role)

171. Trouble with Harry, The (Beautifully filmed Hitchcock comedy clothed as a mystery)

172. True Grit (One of the top John Wayne fliks. The others are The Searchers, Red River, The Quiet Man, She Wore a Yellow Ribbon, and a The Horse Soldiers.)

173. Twelve Angry Men (Not actually a courtroom drama- it takes place in a jury room. Dream cast with Henry Fonda, Ed Begley, Lee J. Cobb, Edward Binns, Martin Balsam, etc. Uniformly fine performances by all.)

174. Unforgiven with Clint Eastwood (Eastwood is in top form as both the lead character and the director. This movie brought Morgan Freeman, Gene Hackman, and Clint Eastwood together for the first time, and various combinations of Eastwood and Hackman or Freeman and Hackman showed up in other movies.)

175. Unforgiven, The—with Burt Lancaster (Fabulous cast: Burt Lancaster, Audrey Hepburn, Audie Murphy, Lillian Gish, Charles Bickford, John Saxon, etc. The peak of the old style westerns. Audrey is miscast as Burt's younger sister who an old saddle tramp has accused of being an adopted Indian baby.)

176. Usual Suspects, The (The performances in this flik are top-notch. Kevin Spacey at his best.)

177. Wheeler Dealers, The (Sometimes silly James Garner vehicle with great supporting cast, including Louis Nye and John Astin. Nevertheless, it has some great comedic moments)

178. When Harry Met Sally (Rob Reiner trying his wings as a new director. Billy Crystal's best performance to date)

179. Winchester 73 (James Stewart western with great cast. Look for Will Gear, Tony Curtis, Rock Hudson, etc. in smaller roles)

180. With a Friend Like Harry (French "tribute" to Hitchcock. Sergei Lopez, as Harry, is quietly diabolical as an old college friend you could certainly do without.)

181. Witness (Probably Harrison Ford's best acting job. Kelly McGillis was very good here also.)

182. Wizard of Oz, The (What can I say that hasn't already been said?)

183. Working Girl (Great cast, cute story, everything clicked including background score.)

184. Worth Winning (Very under-rated comedy with Mark Harmon and Madeleine Stowe)

185. Young Frankenstein (Great comedy with cast at their peak. Unfortunately Mel Brooks never lived up to this potential again as a movie director. It has so many quotable lines like, "What knockers!" and "Stay close to the candles, the stairway can be treacherous.")

186. You've Got Mail (Certainly the best of the Hanks-Ryan pairings. Good support from Greg Kinnear, Dabney Coleman, and Parker Posey.)

Boldprint denotes my top 10 favorites (Oops, I think there are11 highlighted. So sue me.)

Italics denotes movies worth checking out at the video store this weekend

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