Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Weisenheimer Wednesday

Here I is - Dr. vonBloggenschtern, MD* - with yet another installment of Weisenheimer Wednesday.

[* MD = Doctor of Malarkey]

Today's Complete Idiot's Tome of Knowledge is "The Guide to Classic Movies", by a certain Lee Pfeiffer.

Truth be told, I was kind of expecting Lee to provide a lot more background scoop on the movies. Some on-set gossip, maybe. Some "Did you Know - 'Reel'y?" sort of stuff. But what can I do, when part of my rules to these segments is to pull the first orange spine I see off of the library shelf, check it out, and do the research after the fact? You gets what you gets.

I did find out that African-American Oscar-winner Hattie McDaniel opted not to attend the 1939 premiere of "Gone with the Wind" in Atlanta, because state law still enforced segregation in theatres.

Sadly, these factoids were few and far between.

However, it was not all skim-worthy and disappointing. At the back of the book was a fun list of the America Film Institute's Top 100 Films of All Times.

Two things about this:
1) This book was written in 2006, so the list may have been changed; after all, the cinematic genius that is - oh, what's that guy's name again? Benjamin? No, no, no.

Not Benjamin.

Indiana? Nope.

Not Indiana.


Him neither.

Oh, yeah.


Paul Blart, Mall Cop - didn't happen until late last year.

2) I did not personally write this list, so don't be giving me any grief either over entries or omissions. I can only assume from the title that these folks are somewhat the authority on these things. Or at least I think so because of the name:
a) American - implies that they are unequivocally correct. Even if they're wrong.

b) Film - note here the hoity-toity word. Not 'flick', nor even 'movie'. Film, darling. A word associated with art houses and Galoise-smoking, beret-toting bohos. Puff puff, snap. So hip.

c) Institute - a place where important things happen. Not 'shack; not 'duplex' (although I'm sure some very pivotal events occur in these as well...).

Institute, though. Think crazy.

Crazy smart.

Like the kid's summer reading list, maybe we should make this our summer viewing list.

Here goes this list - what percentage have you seen*?

America Film Institute's Top 100 Films of All Time
1. Citizen Kane (1941)
2. Casablanca (1942)
3. The Godfather (1972)
4. Gone With the Wind (1939)
5. Lawrence of Arabia (1962)
6. The Wizard of Oz (1939)
7. The Graduate (1967)
8. On the Waterfront (1954)
9. Schindler's List (1993)
10. Singin' in the Rain (1952)
11. It's a Wonderful Life (1946)
12. Sunset Boulevard (1950)
13. The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957)
14. Some Like it Hot (1959)
15. Star Wars (1977)
16. All About Eve (1950)
17. The African Queen (1951)
18. Psycho (1960)
19. Chinatown (1974)
20. One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975)
21. The Grapes of Wrath (1940)
22. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
23. The Maltese Falcon (1941)
24. Raging Bull (1980)
25. ET, the Extra-Terrestrial (1982)
26. Dr. Strangelove (1964)
27. Bonnie and Clyde (1967)
28. Apocalypse Now (1979)
29. Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)
30. Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948)
31. Annie Hall (1977)
32. The Godfather, Part II (1974)
33. High Noon (1952)
34. To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)
35. It Happened One Night (1934)
36. Midnight Cowboy (1969)
37. The Best Years of Our Lives (1946)
38. Double Indemnity (1944)
39. Doctor Zhivago (1965)
40. North by Northwest (1959)
41. West Side Story (1961)
42. Rear Window (1954)
43. King Kong (1933)
44. The Birth of a Nation (1915)
45. A Streetcar Named Desire (1951)
46. A Clockwork Orange (1971)
47. Taxi Driver (1976)
48. Jaws (1973)
49. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937)
50. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969)
51. The Philadelphia Story (1940)
52. From Here to Eternity (1953)
53. Amadeus (1984)
54. All Quiet on the Western Front (1930)
55. The Sound of Music (1965)
56. M*A*S*H (1970)
57. The Third Man (1949)
58. Fantasia (1940)
59. Rebel Without a Cause (1955)
60. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)
61. Vertigo (1958)
62. Tootsie (1982)
63. Stagecoach (1939)
64. Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977)
65. The Silence of the Lambs (1991)
66. Network (1976)
67. The Manchurian Candidate (1962)
68. An American in Paris (1951)
69. Shane (1953)
70. The French Connection (1971)
71. Forrest Gump (1994)
72. Ben-Hur (1959)
73. Wuthering Heights (1939)
74. The Gold Rush (1925)
75. Dances With Wolves (1990)
76. City Lights (1931)
77. American Graffiti (1973)
78. Rocky (1976)
79. The Deer Hunter (1978)
80. The Wild Bunch (1969)
81. Modern Times (1936)
82. Giant (1956)
83. Platoon (1986)
84. Fargo (1996)
85. Duck Soup (1933)
86. Mutiny on the Bounty (1935)
87. Frankenstein (1931)
88. Easy Rider (1969)
89. Patton (1970)
90. The Jazz Singer (1927)
91. My Fair Lady (1964)
92. A Place in the Sun (1951)
93. The Apartment (1960)
94. Goodfellas (1990)
95. Pulp Fiction (1994)
96. The Searchers (1956)
97. Bringing up Baby (1938)
98. Unforgiven (1992)
99. Guess Who's Coming to Dinner (1967)
100. Yankee Doodle Dandy (1942)

*39% for me. How pathetic.

(I think I should get an extra 60 percent, though, for seeing both Ben-Hur and 2001 before I was 9 years old.)

So, 99%.

Ah, much better.

(not that I'm competitive, or anything. Just don't want you thinking I'm a complete idiot)


Anonymous said...

33% for me. And #65 is a personal favorite of all time. A bit of trivia: it was the last movie to win all top five Oscars. What are the other two?

Anonymous said...

4% for me.
Yeah, I suck.

Cormac Brown said...

Er, I've seen at least five minutes of every single one of those films.

baronessvonb said...

Count Cheeky: While not a fantastic mark on a Chemistry midterm, this is perfectly respectable for the test at hand. Well done, sir.

No idea about your question - illuminate please, oh Mr. Smarty Pants (hey, did you go to WU as well?)

Countess Schmee: But there are so many other things that you are so amazing at. And your youth is a pretty good excuse. Turn that frown upside down, BG!

Count Cormac: Oh, ho. I could have done that game, too. But we Canadian MD's adhere STRICTLY to the rules. Yeah, I know. Boring.

imom said...

You beat me! I'm at 36%. A few of those I saw in the theater as a kid, good memories!

Anonymous said...

64% I think I should get extra for seeing Dr. Zhivago (my #1 fave) every year at least once since I was 11, including dragging my dear esposo to a pee-smelling theatre in Mexico City in a nasty part of town because he had never seen it. It was 1980 and there were no videos!

Mental P Mama said...

Wait. I'm supposed to count the ones I've seen? I'll just guesstimate me at 50%. How's that? And no Breakfast at Tiffany's?

baronessvonb said...

Countess iMom: The only reason I had the score I did is because we went on an AFI film kick a couple of years ago, and started making our way down the list. Some are pretty hard to find...

Countess Rachel: Wow. Sometimes, Smell-O-Vision is a little TOO powerful.

Countess MPM: Well done! As for the BAT comment, may I kindly refer you back to subsection 2?

Cormac Brown said...

"But we Canadian MD's adhere STRICTLY to the rules. Yeah, I know. Boring."

Ah, now I see why Canadians are the most polite people on Earth, they have a sense of honor and fair play. Very noble, Baroness.

baronessvonb said...

Count Cormac: You wouldn't say noble if you saw how poorly I react when I lose at Scrabble...

Anonymous said...

The other two movies to win all five top Oscars:

It Happened One Night
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

And now you know . . .

baronessvonb said...

Count Cheeky: Now I know. And while OFOTCN was an amazing movie, it must have made for a pretty dull Oscar ceremony...

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