Sunday, February 26, 2012

10 Movies I Can't Wait to Watch with Peanut

When someone asks you which movie is your favorite, do you have just one answer? I'm willing to bet no. Which movie we like at that moment depends on how we feel at the time, and how we felt at the time we first saw the movie. It is with that in mind that I have complied this list. I've tried to represent as many genres and as many important filmmakers from my lifetime as possible.

Since the Oscars now have ten nominees for Best Picture, and each year there are very few of them, if any, I'd like to see more than once if at all, I have chosen ten of my favorite movies. When she is old enough, I am going to sit down with Peanut and watch each of these movies with her. I'm going to explain why they're so special to me. And I'm going to spend more time watching her enjoy them than watching the actual movie:

1. The Goonies: Any child of the 80's will have this movie on his/her list. I've always wanted to be a Goonie. I've always wanted to go on an adventure with my friends. To search for hidden treasure and ride underground water slides. I've wanted to kiss Kerri Green in a cave. Actually, I still want to kiss Kerri Green in a cave. I still want to do it all, for that matter. I want Peanut to want to be a Goonie too. Goonies never say die.
2. Back to the Future: When I was sick a couple of weeks ago, I was laying on the couch flipping through the channels and Peanut caught a glimpse of this movie and said, "Look, Daddy. It's your favorite." She knows because one day I was watching it when she came downstairs from her nap. She asked me what I was watching. I told her it was one of my favorite movies and we'll watch it someday when she's older. I remember seeing this movie in the theater with my brother. I was ten. I was fascinated. What child doesn't daydream about going back in time and changing something, or spying on their parents?  Great Scott, what adult doesn't? Huey Lewis is the icing on the cake.

3. Big Fish: This choice is all about my dad. This movie came out shortly after he died in 2003. I remember a parade of people offering me their condolences at his wake. People from his past. People I forgot about. People I had never met. People I had only heard of in his stories. That's what happens at the end of this film. The son sees all of these people from his dad's past. All of these people whose lives he touched. And he realized what a great life he lived. 
4. The Shawshank Redemption: Other than being one of the best movies ever, it has a powerful message about hope and friendship. It also teaches you that life doesn't always turn out how you intended. That there is injustice in this world. But how you respond to that injustice says a lot about your character. Oh, and it has Morgan Freeman.
5. Spaceballs: I am still close to about a dozen of my buddies from high school. This movie was ingrained in our vernacular back then. And even if we've gone weeks or months without talking, one of us can recite a line from this movie and the other will quickly bust out the next line as if no time has passed between us. So many laughs. So many memories. I know there are more classic Mel Brooks movies, but this one is my favorite. Because the next time I see my buddies, we'll inevitably quote this movie. When will then be now? Soon.


6. Hoosiers: I had to sort through a half dozen sports movies. But this one gets the nod because everyone loves an underdog. At least, I do. (I'm a Jets fan.) And when Gene Hackman busts out the tape measure to show his team that the court in the arena where they're about to play the state championship has the same dimensions as their gym back home, I get so pumped up I could dunk a basketball. (Ok, maybe not.) Don't get caught watchin' the paint dry.

7. Ferris Bueller's Day Off: I remember one day during senior year in high school, me and a friend just left after fifth period. He was going through some stuff at home. So I said, "Let's get the hell the out of here and go to the beach." So we spent the next two periods hanging out in our Catholic school uniforms, talking about whatever issues high school kids might have when they reach the point where they get up and leave school without telling anybody. The scary thing is, no one knew we were gone. A couple of top students, vanish for an hour and a half. No one missed us? "Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it." Thanks, Ferris. If The Goonies was my childhood dream, this movie was my high school dream. I lived it for two periods.

8. Jerry Maguire: This is the movie that My Director and I fell in love to. I watched it constantly the semester we started dating. Every time she came over, it seemed to be on my television. We still have that VHS tape. Yes, this movie has a lot of cool sports references and cameos by athletes. A lot of cute lines like "Show me the money" and "This ain't show friends, it's show business." But it's on this list because it's part of our history. And because Peanut's mom completes me. 
9. A Christmas Story: I was worried that my list was devoid of a classic film; that most of my movies are from the 80's or early 90's. But is there any arguing this movie is already a timeless American classic? Every scene has a memorable line. A classic quote. The exciting thing about this movie is, I don't think we're that far away from watching it together. Maybe this year? 
10. Goodfellas: It's an Italian thing. While I despise stereotypes about my heritage and most movies and television shows that perpetuate them, there is no despising this movie. It's probably the one we'll have to wait the longest to watch together because of the violence. True story: My high school yearbook quote was, "What am I a clown? I'm here to amuse you?"

It was very difficult for me to narrow this list down to ten. At one point, I had more than 30 movies to consider. But that's my list and I'm sticking to it. What's on your list? Let the debate begin...

If you want my take on the movies we do watch with Peanut, I list them here as we watch them

17 comments:

  1. I'll have to get to thinking about movies! But I did make a list of books I was going to read with them. You know- BIG books, not picture books (well, with an exception or two).

    http://becomingsupermommy.blogspot.com/2011/02/top-11-books-to-read-my-children.html

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    1. Books?! Hahaha. That's a great idea, too! Thanks for sharing.

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  2. Great list J. I concur with all of your well thought out selections. No debate here.

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    1. Thanks, man. I thought for sure you'd have an addition or two. ;-)

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  3. I love the Blues Brothers. Just because I wish I was on a mission from God to bring back the band...or that I had a band to bring back...
    And I was firmly resolved to be Aretha Franklin when I grew up, which sadly has not panned out ...yet. But I do love me the Blues Brothers, even if my kids can't see it for years yet. ; )

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    1. Blues Brothers is another great movie. I also considered Animal House. Oh, and there's only one Aretha. So don't be sad about that.

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  4. Great list! I looooved the Goonies as a kid. For some reason whenever I think of that movie, I think of Gremlins too. I must've seen them at the same time. I agree with Blues Brothers, too--but I'm from Chicago, so...

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    1. Goodies is such a no-brainer. That's two votes for Blues Brothers now. Chicago represent! Gremlins is good one too?

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  5. If you're watching with your daughter, you'll need to add The Breakfast Club, Pretty in Pink and 16 Candles!

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    1. I went with Ferris as my John Hughes movie. But yes...she will have to watch all three of those girly movies you mentioned, Roni. My Director and I discussed all three. But Ferris wins. And Planes, Trains, and Automobiles is my second favorite Hughes film. It almost made the list.

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  6. I am SO jealous of people who have never seen Goodfellas before, AMAZING!! x

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  7. I don't know how you narrowed it down to 10. Great list.

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  8. Goonies is the best! I can't wait to watch it with my kids too!

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  9. shawshank was on last night. i stayed up to watch it. one of my favorites.

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  10. I know! It's sooo good. Big Fish was on yesterday too and I got sucked in. Underrated film and I'ma Tim Burton fan.

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  11. Adventures in Babysitting and Space Camp. Strong female leads, action and adventure, and Joaquin Phoenix when his name was still Leaf. We'd spin on the tire swing & pretend we were launching into space. Labyrinth when she's a bit older. We went around drawing arrows on the street with lipstick after that movie.

    You should read the novella that Shawshank was based on. It's in Different Seasons, along with The Body, which is what Stand By Me was based on. Oh, Stand By Me is another must movie. "That's Chopper?!"

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  12. Adventures in Babysitting and Space Camp. Strong female leads, action and adventure, and Joaquin Phoenix when his name was still Leaf. We'd spin on the tire swing & pretend we were launching into space. Labyrinth when she's a bit older. We went around drawing arrows on the street with lipstick after that movie.

    You should read the novella that Shawshank was based on. It's in Different Seasons, along with The Body, which is what Stand By Me was based on. Oh, Stand By Me is another must movie. "That's Chopper?!"

    ReplyDelete

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