Old Movies For Young People

Every month I show an old movie to a bunch of twentysomethings (like me). Sometimes it goes over well and other times…not so well. So I thought I’d put together a list of the movies that have been well received by my friends who share my generation in case you’re ever in this situation. Granted, your pals may still make fun of these films and not fully understand their brilliance, but some movies are so good that even the hippest young adults can forgive their corniness.

On to the list …

  • Some Like it Hot - probably our most successful Old Movie Night to date. It’s just full of good stuff that will never go out of style: men dressing up as women, hot blond chicks, the Mafia. Plus there are also plenty of dirty innuendos that any young crowd is sure to love.
  • Psycho – This movie is so famous that anyone who hasn’t seen it will at least know about the shower scene. And while some of it is a little strange, it’s still scary enough to creep everyone out.

 

Casablanca – A classic that even the youngsters have heard of! And is still good enough to hold everyone’s attention. Plus it contains a number of quotes that are commonplace even today.

The Sting – Paul Newman never fails.

Sunset Blvd. – This movie is insane (and who doesn’t love insanity)? Once Norma buries that monkey, there’s no turning back.

The Philadelphia Story – Everything about this one is great. It’s funny and it helps that most people know who Katherine Hepburn, Cary Grant, and Jimmy Stewart are. It’s just a good time.

The Birds – It’s a little corny, but still pretty scary and definitely a favorite amongst my friends.

Singin’ in the Rain – I was hesitant about showing a musical for Old Movie Night. Some people my age just don’t understand them. But luckily, Singin’ in the Rain is famous and fabulous enough that my crowd dismissed the painful unreality of it and just enjoyed the film. Plus that Gene Kelly is a dreamboat and everyone knows it.

Miracle on 34th St. – Really just a classic!

Goldfinger – Pretty much everyone loves James Bond and gold painted ladies laying in a bed.

As I write this I’m preparing for the next Old Movie Night this weekend featuring The Mummy and House of Wax. Double features are usually safe bets. My friends have to like at least one of these, right?

Kimberly Clay lives in Chicago and has loved old movies since a young age. She’s trying to convince her friends of their greatness too. Her website is 50 Years Too Late.

  • http://www.moviesunlimited.com Jerry Frebowitz

    Hey, good movie choices, Kimberly. I’m old and I actually saw some of these movies when I was twenty-something. I enjoyed them when they were new and I can see where young people can enjoy them as well. The proof is that a lot of young viewers are TCM fans.

  • Games

    Kimberly, you are absolutely right! These are fabulous oldies but goodies, though I slightly question the selection of Sunset Boulevard. I do believe I’d add Wait Until Dark as an excellent and surprising Audrey Hepburn selection.

  • masterofoneinchpunch

    I’m finding it a bit difficult to think of “The Sting” as old. After studying a bit on silent film, it is hard to think of any color (three-strip Technicolor and younger) as old.

    But I do agree in the difficulty in getting younger adults to appreciate B&W, silent film or even films with subtitles. I think the films that work well for them are going to be the groundbreakers in violence/sex or ones with fast action/plots. From that standpoint you can always get The Wild Bunch or Bonnie and Clyde for the youngens.

    I do think 1960s cinema is still cheating though. To be daring, but still something that twenty somethings might appreciate I would try Sherlock Jr. (1924), Stalag 17 (1953, same director as Some Like it Hot and Sunset Blvd.), Night of the Hunter (1955), Ben Hur (1959), Un Chien Andalou (1929, if you want to show a very early example of surrealism) well the list could go on :D.

  • Kellie

    I’m 20 myself and an avid movie fan (movies from silents to present) and have regular movie nights with my friends. Arsenic and Old Lace, Bringing Up Baby, Rear Window, Charade, How to Steal a Million, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, Laura, and To Catch a Thief have all gone over pretty well.

  • ROLLAND T.

    I have been a movie buff all my life. Some I like are- Stars and Stripes Forever, Sitting Pretty, Mr. Hobbs Tales a Vacation, Long Hot Summer, Rally Around The Flag Boys, A Summer Place, Big Country, Kelly’s Heroes I could go on and on. The other’s listed above are also part of my favorites.

  • NameFrank DeCavalcante

    Some of the old Mel Brooks movies can work, especially Young Frankenstein. The later ones dont work for even older audiences. Gilda is great fun for young people, mostly because of the allure of Rita Hayworth. The Hitchcock classics like Rebecca, Notorious, Spellbound, and Shadow of a Doubt have universal appeal. The French classic Beauty and the Beast works well with younger audiences. I had thought The Red SHoes would appeal but younger audiences dont relate to the dilemma of career vs. marriage in that film. Kids also dont get A Streetcar Named Desire. They root for Stanley and think of Blanche as a sicko. They also dont get those fabulous old MGM musicals. They think it is silly for people to break into song and dance. The old Disney classics still work, as do the old Lassie movies. They see the MGM Tarzan series as high camp. It is sometimes disheartening to watch classic movies with younger audiences. They dont understand the acting style, they hate black and white movies, and they think the older movies are too sentimental. Having young people criticize and laugh at a favorite old movie can make me murderous.

  • Debbie

    I agree with most of the choices. Rope by Alfred Hitchcock is real good because the homosexual undertones are not mentioned. Although both of the main characters Brandon and Philip are lovers.Some people may not get it.

  • ROLLAND T.

    I left 2 of my favorites off. Bite the Bullet and Big Wednesday. Gene Hackman in the 1st movie as a turn of the century cowboy in horse race. The 2nd is about 3 surfers over a period of 10-15 years.

  • Mary

    How about “You Can’t Take It With You,” “Cool Hand Luke,” “Holiday,” “Rebecca,” “Leave Her to Heaven,” “Desk Set,” “Adam’s Rib”

  • Trystan

    “leave her to heaven” started a whole new genre…. ” the bishops wife” and “Christmas in connecticut”. And “the last emperor” and for screwball comedy “midnight” with claudette colbert

  • Steve in Sacramento

    I’ll second “Gilda,” because I think ANY audience will appreciate Rita Hayworth in this.

    How about “The Devil and Miss Jones”? (Hopefully the kids don’t know the porn title.) I would imagine they would either really like Jean Arthur or not.

    And “Born Yesterday”–surely Judy Holliday will appeal despite the other “old fashioned” elements.

    How about some Cagney–”The Public Enemy” or “White Heat” perhaps?

  • Steve in Sacramento

    Oh, I almost said “Christmas in Connecticut,” but Trystan beat me to it. A remarkably modern-feeling movie in some ways.

  • Steve Edwards

    Kimberly, I am so glad to hear that at least SOMEONE out there is keeping the love for old movies alive! Keep it up and make it spread. Some suggestions for some REALLY old ones that transcend the generations: Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein, any Marx Brothers movie (my personal favorite being Night at the Opera), North by Northwest and It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World.

  • William Sommerwerck

    I’m 63 years old, and am flabbergasted/appalled that you find Paul Newman movies “old”! Or any Hitchcock, of any era, for that matter. (“The Birds” is a dog, however — much too long, and with a pointlessly talky script. Hitch blew it.)

    Try “Amadeus”, a generally considered “perfect” film. Even kids who don’t like classical music love it. “The Thin Man”, too — wonderful lines, especially those that had to fly under the censors’ radar.

    “Modern” films have so declined in quality that the young’uns have no reference — except what they find immediately appealing, which is too-often something shallow, derivative, and just plain stupid. John Hughes did not make great movies, regardless of what you would like to think.

  • Tyrone Shulace

    I think that’s great that you’re keeping your peers informed about and entertained by old movies.

    “The Mummy” and “House of Wax” are two excellent examples of classic films of the horror genre. I hope the showing went over well. IMO, the 1932 version of “The Mummy” with Boris Karloff is by FAR the best “Mummy” picture ever made, it has never been equaled in spite of technical advancements in film making.

  • Frank

    Not exactly the same as what you’re doing but I’ve been watching old movies with my grandkids (8-9 yr olds). They enjoyed Jerry Lewis movies and Planet of the Apes movies. “Them”, a sci-fi classic, was also a big hit.

  • Bill of East Hartford

    I agree with many of your titles, and observations. It is dismaying to hear young people laugh derisively at some perfectly innocent dialogue in the 1937 Lost Horizon. What is so funny about “He (your brother) is no longer my problem, he is now your problem, my dear Conway.”?? I might add to the list The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938) Great Expectations (1946), Samson and Delilah (1949), She (1935), King Kong (1933), the list goes on and on. Would lik,e to read more about your successes and failures. P.S. In case you were wondering, I’m 75. And glad of it. Bill of East Hartford

  • Jim

    Good choices! If you have state of the art equipment, Ben-Hur, West Side Story and Gone with the Wind could fill a double header. The first two were recorded in high fidelity, multi-channel sound, while the latter was filmed in technicolor. Also, Portrait of Jennie will appeal to those getting or having a college education as will The Searchers. Forbiden Planet is a good introduction to movies filmed in CinemaScope.

  • Hilde

    Well done, Kimberly. Our teenager scoffed when I set out to introduce him to my favorites. “No color? How boring.” After viewing On Borrowed Time, Arsenic and Old Lace, most of the Preston Sturges films, Stairway to Heaven, The Ladykillers and The Captain’s Paradise…he is a believer. Though it is color, he loved The Man Who Would be King, too. Keep up the good work. Like a well-written book, a great movie is timeless.

  • STEVEN D LOTT

    I THANK THAT HAVING MORE TEENAGERS LOOK AT OLD MOVIES WILL SAVE OUR CIVILIZATION.

  • Kay Jaax

    Great list of moveis, but why not stretch things a bit and include a couple of classic silents. Wings-1927 and Sunrise:A Song for Two Humans- a;so 1927. I have seen these at a silent film fest with my kids. It has forever changes their appreciation of film and they were teenagers!! We were surprised how contemporty they the films felt.

  • LAGRIFF

    Great idea,great movies. How about Jezebel w/Bette Davis to compare w/Gone With The Wind. Or Ghost and Mrs. Muir or Ruby Gentry. There are so many to choose from and I hate to think after those of us who are 60 to 70 are gone these would be forgotten.

  • John Christenson

    I taught a film history class for a while and co-created a Summer Classic Film series that’s in its eighth season, and hugely popular I might add, so I commend you for sharing old movies. In sharing with those that have never seen a particular “old” film I am left with a quote from Lauren Bacall to Robert Osborne (TCM) “It’s not an old movie if you haven’t seen it.”

  • John George

    You have a great idea and thing going there, Kimberly, and I salute your efforts! Question, though: Do you just watch the movies or do you actually discuss them for their ideas rather than just the obvious? Always remember that movies like works of literature are products of the times when they were either written or filmed, and it might be worth your while to investigate those times when/or before viewing the films to understand/appreciate them more. Many older films require thought, listening, and focusing to see what is beneath the surface. It seems that often younger audiences are unable to do this. Also remember that what is considered “hip” now will seem just as “out of date” to younger viewers down the line as the reactions of some of your friends to the films you’ve chosen. Anyway, keep up the good work and keep on presenting and keeping alive what is part of our history!

  • Leslie

    Kimberly, when our kids were very young we chose to avoid cable and instead built a video library of Disney (of course) and the best of old Hollywood. I concur with the movies already suggested and would add the following. Comedies: we looove What’s Up Doc- Barbara Streisand before she became a meglomaniacal diva and Ryan O’Neal in a wild farce that includes Hollywood’s best-ever chase scene. Madeleine Kahn is brilliant in this too. Paper Moon with O’Neal and Kahn is also great fun as is the original Producers with Gene Wilder and Zero Mostel. The Gods Must Be Crazy has wonderful slapstick and a spine-tingling African song in gorgeous harmony. Musicals: 7 Brides for 7 Brothers (tiny feisty Millie tames the 7 Pontapee brothers, includes a superb dance number), The Music Man (IMO the musical which best integrates song into the dialogue),Sweet Charity (Bob Fosse!), Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (the guys won’t protest watching Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell), Kiss Me Kate, Grease, Pajama Game, On the Town with Gene Kelly, Vera Ellen, Frank Sinatra and Anne Miller- silly but fabulous! Three Little Words with Fred Astaire and Vera Ellen includes Berlin’s beautiful love song, Thinking of You. I love Judy Holliday in any thing but her musical Bells Are Ringing, a cinderella story written specifically for her, is my favorite. The songs Drop That Name and What a System (the bookie’s song) are hysterical. Irving Berlin’s White Christmas – Danny Kaye, Bing Crosby, Rosemary Clooney -we watch every year. For romance, Zefferelli’s Romeo and Juliet is lyrical and tender with terrific young actors. I really like the idea of post-viewing discussion, like a book club. Adam’s Rib with Tracy, Hepburn and Holliday could spark a debate on male/female roles, equality and society’s expectations. Your young audience may not realize that Hollywood was addressing this in the 40s. So many great movies, they shouldn’t be such a hard sell if your friends have any curiosity about other times or can just appreciate real talent. Best of luck!

  • Gordon Moore

    How about “Forbidden Planet”, the 1956 film that was the primary inspiration for the “Star Trek” series? I think it holds up very well. Or the original “Dragnet” movie, which shows how police work and attitudes toward law enforcement have changed over time. I think almost anyone could relate to some of the old westerns – especially “High Noon”?

  • Leslie

    I forgot to add The Great Race, another comedy with Tony Curtis (the sparkling white hero) and Jack Lemmon (the mustache twirling villain). A funny mash-up of melodrama, western, the Prisoner of Zenda and other plots, movie buffs will enjoy spotting well-known actors in cameo roles. This is a movie that everyone from grandparents to elementary school kids will love.

  • Gordon Moore

    Another movie kids might like is “The Black Swan” (1942), because it was the obvious inspiration for the “Pirates of the Caribbean” series. (Actually, it inspired the “Pirates of the Caribbean” ride at Disneyland, which inspired the latter series.) Johnny Depp’s costume is obviously copied from Tyrone Powers’s in the 1942 film, which incidentally is in color.

  • Frank

    If it’s pirates you’re after, and ones operating in the Caribbean, how about “The Crimson Pirate”? In color, no less, also very “old” (1952) and spectacular.

    My feeling is that if somehow kids were better educated the not-too-helpful distinction between “old” films and the “hot new release” wouldn’t exist. Do we go to an art museum to look at “old” paintings? Or the library to borrow and read “old” books?

    But Kimberly is doing great laboring in the vineyard. I’d just approach the problem in a different way and not worry very much about pleasing the youthful viewer. They have enough of that already.

  • mike jaral

    Given a chance to watch, the lewis & martin movies are great, so are the doris day, rock hudson movies. one that comes to mind is “Who was that lady” the scene in the basement at the end is vey funny.it was with martin and curtis.all these type of comedys always make you feel good, and was a good time period in the U.S.

  • El Bee

    Congratulations, Kimberly, and keep up the good work. So, you can evaluate my remarks: I am 75, have taught classes in movies, love movies, and think you are doing these young people a real service in opening new doors to them.

    First, why not make a few modest signs to plant around when watching “old” movies? The Bacall quote to Osborne “A movie’s not old if you haven’t seen it” would be great. Shirley MacLain says in “Life Goes to the Movies:” “All movies should be judged in the time period in which they were made.” A few like these may help keep a better perspective.

    It would also be cool if you could drop a few bits of interesting info along the way–casually, of course, so it doesn’t look like school is in session. “High Noon” was recommended and they might enjoy knowing the time sequence in the movie is real time; also, that John Wayne was disappointed that Cooper made the movie because of tossing his sherrif badge into the dirt at the end of the movie. “House of Wax” was originally shown in 3-D and it’s fun to look for the straight-at-the-camera things to emphasize 3-D effects. The computer in “The Desk Set” occupies an entire room.

    I’m a great Barbara Stanwyck fan and your friends may like her because her style of acting is more straight-from-the-shoulder and less over-the-top or “glamorous” than others. She was one of Hollywood’s top dramatic actresses in the late 30s and early 40s.

    Let me give you a couple double features of Stanwyck’s they may enjoy. First, just for fun: “Baby Face,” a pre-code “dirty” movie including John Wayne in a one minute scene. Combine that with “Lady of Burlesque,” a murder mystery set in a burlesque theatre. The strippers are a riot with everything covered, but the show has a tightness in it due to director William Wellman.

    If they like Stanwyck, try any of these: “Meet John Doe” (drama, Gary Cooper, directed by Frank Capra); “Remember the Night” (Christmas theme, Fred MacMurry, written by Preston Sturges); “Ball of Fire” (comedy, Gary Cooper, written by Billy Wilder, directed by Howard Hawks); “Double Indemnity” (often considered the best film noir made, Fred MacMurry, written and directed by Billy Wilder); “The Lady Eve” (screwball comedy, Henry Fonda, written and directed by Preston Sturges and often considered his best film.)

    It would be a long evening, but “Double Indemnity” and “The Lady Eve” are considered Stanwyck’s best performances. She’s an amazing contrast in these roles. Oh, and maybe her “Annie Oakley” opposite Betty Hutton’s brassy musical “Annie Get Your Gun” sometime.

    The one thing not to give into is providing what they always alike. They will learn to like more and different when they see it in excellent movies. Maybe double features should combine the sour with the sweet: one you know they’ll like and one to stretch some horizons.

    Keep up the good work.

    El Bee

  • Tlynette

    That’s a great list (of course, there are SO many more)!!! I work in a library, and I swear, I keep forgetting just how YOUNG our pages are! We in the Circulation staff are forever suggesting some oldies but goodies to these ‘babes-in-arms,’ and it kills us that some of these (and MANY other classics) are NOT THAT OLD!!!!

    We were all broken up when Paul Newman passed, so everybody was grabbing up all the Newman videos, and some of these kids were saying they’d never seen “The Sting,” or “Butch Cassidy!” They hadn’t even seen the Hitchcock classics–a situation we are hellbent on correcting! The quotes/references in classic films alone borders on Cultural Literacy 101!

    We’re trying to school them on the fine line between a good horror movie and present day gore-fests–it ain’t all about the blood!–good comedy/satire/dramedy that isn’t Mamet-ized (yes, it can be done!) and how the actors/actresses of the past made it look so easy. It’s a big job, but with all the movie buffs on our staff, we are SO willing to do it.

  • Charles R Gaush

    One of my favorite films is “12 Angry Men”, 1957 starring, Henry Fonda,Lee J Cobb, Ed Begley, E G Marshall, Jack Warden, Martin Balsam, etc. The film is about prejudice, something especially appropriate for today’s splintered society. This would be excellent for young people because it would make them think and pay attention to details. In fact, I think it should be required viewing for everyone once a year. I am 81 and saw the original in Pittsburgh when I was a graduate student.

    MGM/United Artists, B&W, 1′ 33″

  • Liz Berry Wagner

    When I was a very young girl my father introduced me to Gregory Peck in “To Kill a Mockingbird”. I later read the eloquent Harper Lee novel in the 9th grade and could visualize this moving story every step of the way since I had seen the movie first. It was and still is one of my all-time favorite films and because of its moral lessons on racial prejudice and its portrayal of the loss of innocence and heroism, the story is timeless and beautiful. I think anyone of any age would enjoy this film and it is a must-see in my opinion.

  • Gina

    So many great movies! How about… Strangers on a Train, On The Waterfront, Whatever Happened to Baby Jane, The Bridge on the River Kwai, Lawrence of Arabia.

  • don snyder

    Nobody ever mentions the wonderful 1952 version of MGM’s action adventure “Scaramouche” starring Stewart Granger, Eleanor Parker and Janet Leigh.
    It was directed in grand style by George Sidney. It has the longest sword duel in cinema history.

  • Daphne

    Rosemary’s Baby.

  • Jackie

    This is an agreement for Liz.I read the book when I was in High School and absolutely knew that this would Always be my all time favorite.I helped my son write a critical analyisis of the movie versus the book (since I saw the flm AFTER I read the novel)when he had a project in his Lit. class. The film was outstanding,but a great deal of the story was left out of the film.I really do not believe there will ever be a better book written that will depict the atrocity of man’s ignorant predujices or a film and an actor showing the same!Gregory Peck was so perfect as Atticus Finch.

  • Darnell

    Wow..I cann’t remember a Saturaday morning that didn’t include Roy Rodgers or Gene Autry..I got an intresting e-mail a couple of years ago about the death of all our “Cowboy Heros” and the simple life that sort of died with them..So much for childhood and straight forwardness..

  • Debbie

    I also think the movie The Best Years of Our Life is a wonderful masterpiece that every man woman and child should watch. It expresses the way of life of post WW2. I love it and watch it every time it is on. There is always something new to discover.

    • lovestorun

      I like that movie so much I purchased it.

  • Susan

    “Old” movies my kids like Anything with Bob Hope from Pale Face to Boy Did I get a Wrong Number, Hitchcock esp. Rear Window and To Catch a Thief of course Rebecca and Suspicion. My 19 yr olds favorite movies Laura, It Happened One Night, Letter to Three Wives,My Favorite Brunette once I got her to watch B&W she was hooked !!

    It would be fun to show double features of movies that have been remade like Father of The Bride, the younger folks can actually see the originals are better.

    One exception is The Philadelphia Story and High Society equally good in our opinion because they didn’t try to remake the original but told the story again in a fresh format with equally impressive talented stars.

    Last but not least Hitchcocks first American film Mr and Mrs Smith even my 12 year old found it very funny, you can’t go wrong with Carole Lombard and the often under-rated Robert Montgomery.

  • bogart10

    HEY DEBBIE…. REGARDING THE UNMENTIONED GAY THEME IN “ROPE”…IT WAS BASED ON THE LEOPOLD/LOEB MURDERS….BUT HOW MANY CAUGHT ON TO THE “CLOSE” RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN GLENN FORD AND RITA’S NEW HUBBY, BARON MUNSON IN “GILDA”????????

    • williamsommerwerck

      I’ll have to watch “Gilda” again — I didn’t catch that. But the film /is/ brutally misogynistic, which is perhaps what you’re reacting to.

  • Ray magyar

    After a movie argument between my favorite old movies (I’m 63) verses the newer action packed movies of my 19 year old intern, we agreed to each watch a movie of our choice for the other. Her choice was some bloody, explosion packed movie I can’t remember the title of. I gave her a copy of “Roman Holiday” which she immediatley objected to since it was in Black and White. She came to the office next Monday morning clutching the DVD to her chest and exclaiming “THIS is the best movie ever made”.

  • CitizenScreen

    Wonderful list! I’d personally exclude the Bond choice but makes complete sense from a pop culture perspective. Also my list would be a bit longer to include a couple of other Film Noirs, musicals, The Godfather trilogy and King Kong.

    For some reason it makes me happy not to see Citizen Kane on the list.

    A fun read!

  • williamsommerwerck

    I’m frankly surprised that the kids didn’t find many of these films “boring”. Kids have relatively short attention spans (though sitting in an audience with other kids helps, perhaps).

  • katny

    I feel your pain Kimberly. I’ll only describe ones that are new to my list as others have endorsed some I recommend too.

    Here are ones I suggest
    Laura
    To Kill a Mockingbird
    Sunset Blvd
    Here Comes Mr. Jordan (comedy)
    The Producers (comedy)
    Blazing Saddles (comedy)
    Lion in Winter-the best dialogue I’ve ever heard.
    Ace in the Hole/the Big Carnival. This was Kirk Douglas’s favorite of his own movies. There’s a mining disaster and the press all come to cover the story. Will they get the man out in time? Kirk Douglas plays a reporter who deliberately delays the rescue to draw out the coverage.
    Judgment In Nuremberg –explores the culpability of the common German people for the Holocaust. Spencer Tracy is an American judge who presides over the trial of Nazi war criminals. In the course of living in Nuremberg for the trial he tries to understand how the seemingly pleasant people he meets could have condoned the atrocities.
    Double Indemnity
    Any Marx brothers movie
    In the heat of the Night-Sidney Poitier investigating a murder in the Jim Crow South. Would be a great double with To kill A Mockingbird. Call it the Paula Deen night.

  • Gord Jackson

    A few thoughts Kimberly. (A) Would it be worthwhile to show a few films about the movies themselves, possibly leaving young people with some insights about them. I am thinking of titles like MAN OF A THOUSAND FACES with James Cagney, a film that explores (sadly somewhat fictionalized but for our purposes that’s okay) the life of horror film master Lon Chaney. Most young people like horror films, it’s a good way to differentiate ‘horror’ from todays ‘horrorific’ plus it also explores the themes of fear and discrimmination vis-a-vis those who are ‘different.’ (B) While I am not personally a big Woddy Allen fan, THE PURPLE ROSE OF CAIRO is a great one about contrasting the world of dreams, fantasy and reality again using the movies as a backdrop. (C) CHARIOTS OF FIRE explores many issues, including fear, discrimmination and sticking to ones principles even if they seem outdated or fly in the face of societal acceptance. (D) Both musical versions of A STAR IS BORN brilliantly deal with the pressures and sacrifices performers often have to make, their personal lives and situations notwithstanding. In the 1954 edition, this is poignantly presented around the last musical number in the film when Judy Garland first does the happy, upbeat LOSE THAT LONG FACE song that is immediately counterpointed with the sorrow, fear and anger of the dramatic dressingroom scene with Charles Bickford which in turn then segues back to a short retake to the finale of LOSE THAT LONG FACE. With the 1976 Streisand-starring film, we get the same dramatic effect with the electric WITH ONE MORE LOOK AT YOU/ARE YOU WATCHING ME NOW finale.

    I could go on as there are so many possibilities. And as someone previously indicated, it would be great if there was some discussion about content after a film. The approach doesn’t have to be heavy-handed, in the selection of titles or the ferreting out of discussion points. Indeed re the latter, they are probably quite self-evident.

    Good luck. and keep up the fantastic work.

  • MAGMAN

    My 19 year old intern and I were arguing about my “old and lame movies” verses her modern robot and vampire movies. We made a pact that each will watch the movie of our choice over the weekend. She gave me some movie with lots of robots and explosions (can’t remember the title). I gave her “Roman Holiday” to which she objected because it was in black and white. Monday she came into the office with the DVD clutched tightly to her chest saying “This is the BEST movie ever made in the world!”. Afterwards, she wanted more suggestions from me about my “old and lame” movies. .

  • lovestorun

    The Searchers with John Wayne is a fabulous old movie.

  • Richard

    Certainly “The Mummy” (1932) with Boris Karloff is truly one of the great B&W horror films. Though my opinion is that for kids “The Mummy’s Hand” (1940) may be a better choice as it has some nice comedy relief with Wallace Ford as well as the chills from the mummy and George Zucco, and those wonderful Tana leaves. One of my favorite scary movies as a kid growing up. I must have watch it at least a dozen times. Watch this one.

  • Joseph23006

    ‘The Mummy’ is a good choice. ‘House of Wax’ would be best in 3D, the man with the paddle board or when Vincent Price swings across the open space and his disfigured face is right in yours. I suggest Depends and comfort bags be available!

  • Eric Nilsson

    I believe The Mummy has the best Boris Karloff performance in a horror movie. Karloff uses his eyes to display gut-wrenching fear as he is being wrapped; he uses his twitches as he returns to life (“He went for a little walk!”); and his soft voice as Ardeth Bey is as menacing as Im Hotep’s movements.

    House of Wax is all right, but its main selling point, at least in 1953, was its use of 3-D. Vincent Price was infinitely superior to Lionelo Atwill, though, so that’s a point in the 3-D version’s favor.

  • KarenG

    How about Charade? It’s a great thriller plus a romantic comedy at the same time. I’m truly jealous of those who get to watch it for the first time.

  • classicsforever

    The only problem is the short-term attention span of most young people today. They don’t know what a great film consists of. More than 4 or 5 min. without an explosion or some form of idiocy and you’ve lost them. That’s a shame because the older movies are where the real talent (script, directing and acting) is found.

    • Rain

      Nice stereotyping. All young people are stupid, nice

      • classicsforever

        Read the 11th word in my first sentence. And, yes, I stick by my statement. This is also the conclusion of many movie reviews I’ve read. The majority of modern movies are made with that in mind. In fact, I saw an interview with the great Charlton Heston and he made the same observation.

  • Gayle Feyrer

    The Oxbow Incident is still really powerful. Or if you want weird, Kiss Me Deadly should throw them for a loop, really bizarre Noir. Or you might try Double Indemnity.
    Good luck with The Mummy. I love that oldie.

  • PAUL ADAIR

    THE GENERAL, THE GOLD RUSH, STEAMBOAT BILL, Jr., MAD WEDNESDAY

  • Mindy Newell

    THE BEST YEARS OF OUR LIVES, THE SEARCHERS, the original KING KONG, ALL ABOUT EVE, A FACE IN THE CROWD, FORBIDDEN PLANET, TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD, NORTH BY NORTHWEST, REAR WINDOW, GONE WITH THE WIND…you should go to the American Film Institute’s Top 100 list for more ideas.

  • Bruce Reber

    A few from Alfred Hitchcock (in chronological order)- Shadow Of A Doubt, Strangers On A Train, I Confess, The Man Who Knew Too Much (the ’56 version w/James Stewart & Doris Day), Vertigo, North By Northwest and The Birds (I don’t know why everyone’s down on this one-IMO still one of Hitch’s very best!). Some based on books-Of Mice And Men, The Grapes Of Wrath, The Fountainhead, To Have And Have Not and the remake The Breaking Point, The Carpetbaggers and Doctor Zhivago. Any Elvis Presley movie (with the exception of Love Me Tender, Wild In The Country, Tickle Me, Stay Away Joe and Charro, IMO his 5 worst). Almost any John Garfield movie. Some movies with animals-National Velvet, The Yearling, Goodbye My Lady, The Red Pony and The Brave One. Almost any of the early Woody Allen movies-Take The Money And Run, Bananas and Sleeper. And any 50′s sci-fi movie (be they great, mediocre or just plain awful), especially the ones with stop-motion animation by Ray Harryhausen.

  • renerz

    If you are showing these to women, I totally love “A Letter to Three Wives,” which is filled with great acting and great lines, also “The Long, Hot Summer” (original). For everyone, “The Sting” and “Gentlemen’s Agreement” and another lesser known Gregory Peck movie called “Night People” which is historically interesting because of a divided Berlin and references to Checkpoint Charlie!