Monday, June 21, 2010

Dirty Dozen - my favourite movies

I haven’t been doing any of the musical lists, because I don’t really listen to enough music in a systematic way to make the list of top albums, top country songs, top classical songs, etc.

I am not a huge fan of movies either, but if I break it up systematically, I may just be able to think of a dozen movies that have affected me in some way or the other.

Sound of Music – the first movie I ever saw, or to be more accurate, the first movie I did not see. Apparently my parents took me to see the movie when I was really young, and my father spend most of the movie minding me outside the hall, while my mother enjoyed the movie. I do have very vague memories of that experience, have much more vivid memories of singing the songs when I was a .little older, and of finally seeing (and enjoying) the movie when I was in my late teens.

Benji – the first movie I remember watching. I grew up in this really small town without movies (or TV), so my film-watching was restricted to the summer holidays when we visited my grandparents in the city. I must have been eight when my father took me to watch Benji, and I dreamt about his exploits for several months after that.

Where Eagles Dare – my father and I watched this movie when I was a teen. He was a huge fan of action movies, and did his best to get me interested in the genre- with mixed results (I watch action movies, but often close my eyes during the key moments). Great memories because of the bonding time I spent with my father.

Roman Holiday and/ or My Fair Lady- no list of mine could be complete without at least one movie starring Audrey Hepburn. Should it be the memorable movie about the Princess who wants an adventure or the equally memorable one of the flower girl who acts as a princess- that is the question. Since I know most of the dialogues of the latter, maybe that wins out.

Singing in the Rain- I love musicals, and this is perhaps the best of its genere. Can anyone ever dance better than Gene Kelly? ‘nuff said. I also had this cassette, and could sing along to most of the songs

My Cousin Vinny- it was a toss up between this and Legally Blond. There has to be at least one movie on the list which turns the stereotypes about dumb bimbettes on its head. This won out because who expects a girl like that to know so much about cars?

Kanchenjunga – one of Satyajit Ray’s less acclaimed films, it is nonetheless my favourite. Powerful performances, unusual story-line, and a beautiful locale well captured. What more could anyone ask for?

Usual Suspects – one of my husband’s favourite movies, he challenged me to try and guess the end. I love the movie because I guessed the end about 15 minutes before it was finally revealed, and never tired of reminding him of the fact.

Matrix –another movie I saw with my hubby. He like most people I know liked the movie for its visual effects, but complained of not quite getting the storyline. I loved the story line, and loved the movie. But both the sequels disappointed.

Princess Diaries – I read the book when I was pregnant with my first child, and couldn’t’ resist the temptation to pick up the movie when it I saw it at a music store. Have seen it dozens of times with my kids, and love the movie for all the wonderful memories it brings back.

Mary Poppins – strangely, I watched this movie for the first time only a few years back. You have songs, you have dances, you have fantasy, you have Julie Andrews. Can anyone want more? I often sing many of the songs with the kids.

Madagascar – I am emotionally attached to this movie, because it was the first one I watched in a theater with both my kids. The screening had been organized by my older one’s school, and he got the tickets for the show himself! It is also a lovely story of friendship and loyalty.

Thank you, Alex J Cavanaugh for organizing this, and forcing me to relive some of my favourite movies. And for all the wonderful bloggers who have been blogging about their favourite movies - you gave me the confidence to attempt this.


Mason Canyon said...

Great list. You may not listen to music much but your taste in movies has a bit of a musical theme.

Thoughts in Progress

Debra She Who Seeks said...

I like several of those movies too. The fight scenes in Matrix between Neo and Agent Smith rock! I've made a point of NOT seeing the sequels because I heard they stink.

Jayne said...

You have some of my favourites on this list - absolutely adore Mary Poppins and Singing in the Rain. I also love When Eagles Dare, not seen it for a while though. Great list! And thank you for your kind words on my Father's Day post, by the way. Much appreciated.

Southpaw said...

Wow there are movies on your list I’ve forgotten. I have to rewatch some this summer.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Yeah, Madagascar! One of my favorites.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

You did great, Rayna! And I so forgot The Usual Suspects.

arlee bird said...

Good selection of films. A few I haven't seen, but most I have and enjoyed.

Tossing It Out

Jan Morrison said...

can't believe I left Singing in The Rain off my list. Oh well, twelve is just not enough - I could go on and on...
I also like any Audrey Hepburn movies (I put Breakfast at Tiffany's on my list)

welcome to my world of poetry said...

Quite a few of ones I have seen and enjoyed, A wonderful selection Rayna.


Anonymous said...

LOVED The Matrix. There is no spoon...

Watery Tart said...

Sound of Music is another of those classics I really love-- And I remember that Benji was the first movie I cried at. (I'm a big old sap--think you knew that)

Great list!

slommler said...

I too loved Matrix. And I agree with you; the sequels just didn't cut it.
Nice movie list you have compiled.

Cruella Collett said...

This whole blog hop makes me wish that it'll rain all summer so I can spend all my time inside rewatching movies... Singing in the Rain and Roman Holiday must be my favourites from your list, I think. And I also love Madagascar.

Beth Zimmerman said...

Wonderful list! I had forgotten about the Princess Diaries but that is definitely another keeper!

Clarissa Draper said...

I wish I had joined up for's so fun.

Great movie choices.


Gregg said...

Great list. Many of them I have not seen. Some new titles for me t check out on rainy days!

Jane Kennedy Sutton said...

Haven’t seen all these movies, but if I had a list many of them would be included. I love watching the Madagascar movie on TV with my grandson – I miss a lot of the movie because I love watching his expressions more.

Cold As Heaven said...

Forgot about Where Eagles Dare. Should have squeezed that on into my own list. The book by MacLean is cool too.

Cold As Heaven

Carol Fleisher said...

Great list. You have good taste. I love all these movies! :)

Jemi Fraser said...

Awww - Benji! Who doesn't love Benji?

You've got a great list! There are several of my favourites on here: Sound of Music, Singing in the Rain, Roman Holiday :)

Elizabeth Spann Craig/Riley Adams said...

Great list...and so prolific! I love "Sound of Music" and "The Matrix," too. :)

Doris Plaster said...

You brought me memories with that list of movies... especially the first part of the list. Great selection. Although my favorite of all times is the italian movie: "Cinema Paradiso" :-))

Wonderful post!


Rayna M. Iyer said...

Thank you all for dropping by. Will try to return the visit today, but will definitely do so by the end of the week.

@ Mason - yes, I do love musicals

@ Debra - I saw the third one a couple of days before I was due to go into labour, and that remained the last movie I saw in a theatre for over four years.

@ Jayne - they are fabulous movies, aren't they?

@ Southpaw - that is what I like so much abotu these lists - remembering things that we loved and have now forgotten.

@ Diane - you have a couple on your list that should have been on mine too

@ Alex - I must thank you for making me do this list - relived so many memories

@ Lee - frankly, I did not think anyone would agree with any of my choices!

@ Jan - Audrey Hepburn is something else, isn't she? Breakfast, would have been the third, but these are clearly the first two.

@ Yvonne - when I read your post, I realised we had similar taste in movies, and that gave me the confidence to do this list

@ Linda - classic line that was

@ Tami - I read Benji a couple of years back, and guess what I did - I cried!!!!

@ SueAnn - the next two Matrix movies did lose the plot, didn't they?

@ Cruella - it is raining in Bombay, but some people have to brave the rain and get to work :-(

@ Beth - Princess Diaries is one of those few books which get made into a good movie.

@ Clarissa - nothing stopping you from doing it even now.

@ Gregg - that's another benefit of this thing- lots of new recommendations

@ Jane - remember Alex moving his hand up and down his face, changing expressions - my kids love doing that!

@ Cold as Heaven - that is one of the few action/ thriller movies I really like.

@ Carol - thanks. They are fun to watch, aren't they?

@ Jemi - Benji is the best, isn't he? And I am surprised by how much overlap there actually is.

@ Elizabeth - comes of not having a refined taste, I guess ;-)

@ Doris - havn't seen that movie - should!

The Alliterative Allomorph said...

Yay for Mary Poppins! I considered it, but didn't make it. It was so hard to boil the list down to 12 :o(

Anonymous said...

Aaaaah I forgot about the matrix! Haha, nice list, very fun and musical :D

Talli Roland said...

Benji! Oh how I love Benji!

Great list, Rayna.

Bryan said...

great list, I'm feeling like going back to my list now and sharing more about my picks. Sharing these films with the kids Is so important. They don't make them like these anymore.

Mary Poppins was one of the very first DVDs we ever purchased and is a family treasure. NO ONE accidentally gets peanut butter on that one.

Rayna M. Iyer said...

@ Jessica - near impossible nailing it down to just 12. After publishing it, I realised how many other movies I left out.

@ xenn - thank you. And I look forward to seeing yours.

@ Talli - that is a classic, isn't it?

@ Bryan - most of the movies I like, I like for emotional reasons. Had to give the reasons. Why don't you tell us why you picked what you picked another time?


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