Saturday, January 31, 2009

My Cousin Vinny

This is a fairly unexpected classic. Ralph Macchio plays a kid wrongfully accused of murder. Unable to afford a decent attorney, he turns to his loyal cousin, Vinny (Joe Pesci) for help. Vinny has just recently passed the bar, and is happy to help out a family member in need. But he has several big bumps to overcome along the way to the truth. Marisa Tomei's role as Mona Lisa Vito is particularly memorable. She even won an Oscar for it!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


I often say this, but I cannot believe I have not yet posted a summary of this film. Footloose is absolutely my favorite 80s dance movie. This is the story of Ren (Kevin Bacon), a new kid in small town America. He soon learns that the book-burning, God-fearing Christians populating his new home have made dancing illegal. ("Jump back!") He also starts up a little chemistry with the preacher's kid, Ariel, the town bad-girl. Best of all is the soundtrack. It was one of the first cassette tapes I ever had as a kid. People should definitely do themselves a favor and "cut footloose."

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Rain Man

While I think many of the "must-see" movies are often quite skippable, this film does not fall under that category. Even if one has heard a lot about it, it is still a surprising, moving and heartfelt picture. Tom Cruise has just learned he has an older brother (played by Dustin Hoffman). And now, as it turns out, the long-lost sibling is his responsibility. Things start off pretty rocky for the pair, but they soon learn to tolerate one another. Eventually tolerance grows to love. I think this film is one of Hoffman's best!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Kramer vs. Kramer

I had to double check to make sure I really had not yet written about this movie. In my opinion, it is the very best that the 70s have to offer. I am in love with this film. I remember not really knowing what to expect the first time that I saw it. Meryl Streep and Dustin Hoffman play an unhappy couple, and when Streep decides to leave him and their son, things get a little messy. This film is full of heart and emotional turmoil and is a beautiful portrayal of the bond between father and son. Everyone should see this one, it is definitely a tearjerker.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Soylent Green

I am sure I have already mentioned my general aversion to 70s films, but this one is actually worth seeing once. I would recommend just renting it without reading the synopsis. It is one of those films that would be much better as a surprise. A classic Charlton Heston role, this movie features a futuristic and overpopulated world where food is scarce and people will do anything to get it. In many ways, this version of society steps backward, rather than forward. I find this to be the most interesting and distinguishing characteristic of the film. In this world, humanity actually becomes more primitive as desperation rises.

Monday, January 19, 2009

To Catch a Thief

My Grandma absolutely loves this movie. Cary Grant and Grace Kelly are completely gorgeous and with them playing opposite one another, film audiences never stood a chance. Grant plays a former thief accused of relapsing, so to speak. He must discover the real culprit to prove his innocence. The scenery is amazing, overall a great Alfred Hitchcock film.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Terms of Endearment

This movie means a lot to me, mostly because my parents like it so much. It is about the very special bond between mothers and daughters. When I saw this, it was possibly the most I have ever cried during a movie. I do not have a daughter of my own yet, but when I do I know this film will mean even more to me than it does now.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

An American in Paris

This Gene Kelly classic is very close to my heart. While I find the storyline a little ridiculous, I love the setting. I live in France, and after spending this weekend in Paris, it made me crave this film. Kelly's athletic dance style is very different from Fred Astaire's classic tapping, but I truly appreciate both actors and their films. Kelly plays a starving American painter living in Paris. A wealthy patroness discovers him, but it appears her interests go beyond his art. Kelly falls in love with a French girl who is already taken. Beautiful scenery, very extravagant dance numbers, everything one comes to expect from a Kelly production.

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

The Treasure of the Sierra Madre

Rear Window

A Streetcar Named Desire

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