My three favorite films of all time are:
Singin' in the Rain
North by Northwest
The Strange Love of Martha Ivers
Interestingly enough, they each fulfill a different category.
I am a musical theatre gal, and Singin' in the Rain is my favorite musical motion picture, hands down. Based on the transition from silent films to talking pictures, Singin' in the Rain captures an era of music, movies and style exquisitely. There's simply nothing like it, with its amazing cast, vivid costumes, brilliant dance numbers and sweet storyline. I would have given almost anything to be able to work with Gene Kelly. He was a quintuple threat: singer, dancer, actor, writer and director. He, like me, pursued all of these avenues and made his movies truly his own. They just don't make them like Gene any more.
I think the world of Alfred Hitchcock's works. North by Northwest is my favorite Hitchcock film. It is masterfully done. The writing, the directing, the acting, the twists, the turns, the score music and all of the aspects make for a fast-paced feature. Cary Grant plays a man whose average life is turned upside down when he is mistaken for someone else. Prepare for car chases, trains, planes, crimes, lies, and secret agents.
The Strange Love of Martha Ivers is my favorite semi-unknown film noir piece. It is from 1946. It features Barbara Stanwyck, Van Helfin, Lizbeth Scott and, in his film debut, Kurt Douglas. Three of the main characters grew up together. Tragedy strikes on a dark and stormy night, and one runs away. He accidentally returns to his childhood town two decades later, and finds himself in the middle of a love triangle - and blackmail. I thank American Movie Classics for exposing me to this movie over a decade ago, and I wish that channel ran as many classic films as it used to run.
I love Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll. Keeping the true title, the live action British musical from 1972 is my favorite adaptation of the novel. When Alice follows a white rabbit down a rabbit hole, little did she know she was in store for growing and shrinking, talking animals, a mad tea party, and a trial. Alice is played by a brunette Fiona Fullerton, and as a child, that gave me such hope that I would not always be typecast.
Bless you, Kevin, Megan and Jonathan for the 1986 version of Anne of Green Gables. Anne of Avonlea was also a good adaptation, but less faithful than the first outing because it attempted to combine multiple books. Anne of Green Gables is simply delightful. Alternately dramatic and comedic, this is suitable for the whole family, and hopefully has inspired many people to read the octet of Anne books.
Charade features Grant, Hepburn and Matthau, oh my! Three of my favorite actors in over two hours of smart-as-a-whip suspense. Mistaken identities. A missing fortune. A fabulous soundtrack. Mod score music. I love espionage.
Ferris Bueller's Day Off is my favorite John Hughes film. It is also my favorite comedy from the 1980s. The film follows the misadventures of 3 teens who decide to ditch school in favor of a day in the city. This is a great movie to quote. It transcends the time period; it is just as funny now as it was when it was released, and will remain just as funny in the future.
The NeverEnding Story is both my favorite fantasy book and film of all time. A young boy named Bastian borrows an intriguing title called The NeverEnding Story from a local bookshop and begins reading it at school, hiding while his peers attend class. The book takes us to a magical land called Fantasia which is falling apart. Fantasia is being devoured by something called the Nothing because people are no longer believing in the stuff of fantasy and no longer employing their imagination. Within the book, a young warrior named Atreyu is sent on a quest by the dying Childlike Empress to stop the Nothing. Among other creatures, he befriends a flying, talking luck dragon named Falkor. As Bastian reads on, he discovers that he is part of the story.
Other favorite films include:
The Ghost and Mrs. Muir (favorite ghost story)
Happy Accidents (favorite modern release; favorite indie flick)
Laura (favorite classic film noir)
Mr. Blandings Builds His Dreamhouse (favorite classic comedy)
The Trouble with Angels (favorite based-on-real-life film)
Read my later post about my favorite films.