I had a toss and turn sort of night and if I got three hours of sleep, it was a miracle. Consequently, I have an excuse for reposting this from two years ago.
Be warned: the colour-coded asterisks are back. Forgive mezzzzzzzzzz………
Okay, I’d better start by admitting that there are actually fifteen films on the list. I did manage to rate them but I couldn’t leave out the last four; I can’t hurt their feelings, I’m afraid. And yes, I know celluloid/digital things don’t have feelings…I suppose my anthropomorphism* of them comes from the same logic that led me to never say in my mind the code of the padlock to the outside bin cupboard in case identity thieves or secret government agencies read my mind** and accessed my shredded documents and potato peelings. I only stopped doing it when it occurred to me that if the government has the power to read minds then they could probably get past a three-for-a-pound padlock without too much difficulty. It was about that time I also decided to stop wearing the foil hat.
- Terminator & Terminator 2 - T1 because it’s the greatest love story ever told and T2 because it’s the story of a mother’s love and redemption. The fact that there’s loads of violence is simply a fortunate coincidence. I never watched a violent movie until I saw T1: we were newlyweds living in a flat in Jo’burg and my brother and his girlfriend came to stay, bringing movies that had blood and guts but no romance, I thought, including Mad Max (if ever there was a prescient name for Mr Gibson, that’s it) and The Terminator. I didn’t want to watch any of them but I was a new hostess and soppy in love with the Hub back then, and allowed myself to be persuaded. I’m so glad I did. I was glued to the screen (my brother’s a great practical joker) and I have loved T1 ever since.
- Love Actually - what’s not to love, actually? Great ensemble cast, interwoven characters, humour, pathos, the best wedding scene in the history of film, and Hugh Grant calling Margaret Thatcher ‘a saucy minx’.
- It’s A Wonderful Life - the best Christmas film ever made. We made the boys watch it with us one Christmas Day. Tory Boy protested loudly right up to the first five minutes in (particularly that it was in black & white), and then became engrossed in the film and outraged at George Bailey’s rotten luck and unfair shake at the world. I’ve only ever seen him that indignant over a scratched dvd, so it was quite a conversion.
- Forrest Gump & Field Of Dreams - I’ve read both of the books on which the films were based and much prefer the movies. Forrest, Forrest Gump is an ‘idiot savant’*** and gets to hump a lot and Shoeless Joe Jackson is no Ray Liotta. Mind you, neither is Ray Liotta these days: have you seen his face? Euggh. Why people have plastic surgery thinking it will fix growing old is beyond me.
- The Muppet Christmas Carol - the best Christmas film ever made: ‘Light the lamp, not the rat! Light the lamp, not the rat!’ Brilliant!
- Signs – M. Night Shyamalammmmm is a genius and I hope one day to be able to shake his hand and ask him, ‘How do you pronounce your surname?’ This film is the most scared I like to be, and it terrifies me every time I watch it even though I know the ending. Which makes me about as bright as a dog who attacks his own leg.
- The Last of the Mohicans - the one with Daniel Day Lewis. It’s the only film in which I ever thought he was attractive; I guess I must like my men with long hair and wearing smelly moccasins. We drove 100kms to watch this on our tenth wedding anniversary. Mum babysat Tory Boy and we went for a meal and a movie. I didn’t want to see it but the Hub was desperate, it was on its last week in cinemas, and I was still somewhat in love. Of course, it was Terminator 1 all over again, but without the annoying sibling. I once watched it on M-Net three times in one week.
- You’ve Got Mail - the best three little words ever (I’ve been married a long time). Although, here in Britain it is, ‘You have mail, sir,’ from our butler. We Brits tend to be more formal.
- The Sound of Music - singing nuns and singing Nazis? You’d have to be daft not to love it.
- Moulin Rouge - any film that contains an Elephant Love Medley and an unconscious Argentinian gets my vote.
- The Santa Clause - the best Christmas film ever made. I love it. Are you sensing a pattern? All of these Christmas movies bang on about the spirit of Christmas and the true meaning of Christmas without once mentioning the story of Christmas. But hey, that’s Christmas for you.
- Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat - Donny Osmond. Sigh.
- The Untouchables - Kevin Costner in a mac and Sean Connery in the worst Irish accent ever, plus a fabulous soundtrack. I love it.
And there you have it.****
Now, what does my list say about me?
It says that I have an obsession with Christmas, I love musicals and violence is fun. It says I like Kevin Costner, Tom Hanks, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Rizzo the Rat i.e. I don’t have a type. Therefore, my favourite all-time film would be a violent musical about Christmas, starring the thinking woman’s beefcake rodent.
*A word used deliberately to dispel the scurrilous rumour that my readers are all better read than I am.
**Not as nutty as it sounds; there’s not much in there.
***I use inverted commas because I’m quoting from the book. I’m not sure in this pc world of ours if this term is still in use; though I have to say this is one time I’m in favour of political correctness because it’s a horrible way to describe someone. If anyone knows another term, I’d appreciate you leaving a comment letting me know, and I’ll change it.
****Not quite: I desperately wanted to include Scrooged but a Top Ten stretched to sixteen and starring four Christmas films was a step too far, I’m afraid. Carol Kane’s kicking fairy will have to go on another list: Mythical Film Creatures or, Why I Don’t Have Any Friends.
Now tell me about your favourite movies, please. I’d love to know, in case I missed a good ‘un. And what do you think your list says about you?