Sunday, May 10, 2009

Guest Columnist: Gianna's Top 100 Movies Every Film Buff Should See, Pt 4

Here's your latest installment... Cool, I'm up to 7 out of 10 this time!
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Dial M for Murder (1954, Dir: Alfred Hitchcock, Wr: Frederick Knott)-Another great Hitchcock film, and the only one of his films that was filmed in 3D. Interesting to watch with that knowledge, as you’d never know it (unlike other 3D films of that era) and it makes you appreciate the cinematography even more.

Dogville (2003, Dir: Lar Von Trier, Wr: Lars Von Trier)-The first of Von Trier’s America trilogy. Filmed on a sound stage with minor set pieces, it features Nicole Kidman as a young woman hiding out in a small town. Serves as an interesting commentary on America’s foreign policy.

East of Eden (1955 Dir: Elia Kazan, Wr: Paul Osborn)-In his short career James Dean shot three pictures: Rebel Without a Cause, Giant and East of Eden. Everyone has seen Rebel and Giant is, well, it’s long and it has Elizabeth Taylor. East of Eden, I feel, captures his best performance.

Ed Wood (1994, Dir: Tim Burton, Wr: Scott Alexander)-Tim Burton’s biography of Ed Wood is just heaven. One of the best Burton/Depp films, its celebration of the mediocre makes it one of the most joyous film bios made.

Eight Men Out (1988, Dir: John Sayles, Wr: John Sayles)-A great sports movie about one of the most infamous scandals in baseball. One of my favorites Sayles’s films.

Grave of the Fireflies (1988, Dir: Isao Takahata, Wr: Isao Takahata) A touching film of children in post Hiroshima Japan. An unusual subject for animated film, it executes the story beautifully.

Grey Gardens (1975, Dir: Albert & David Maysles)-This documentary, about Edith Bouvier Beale and her daughter Edie was shot shorty after they were ordered to clean up their crumbling home Grey Gardens. No voice over narration or commentary and little background info make this an interesting documentary.

Harold and Maude (1971, Dir: Hal Ashby, Wr: Colin Higgins) The ultimate May/December romance, this film has some of the most amusing and equally touching moments I’ve seen. You also can’t beat the wonderful performances and chemistry of Ruth Gordon and Bud Cort.

Heaven Can Wait (1978, Dir: Warren Beatty & Buck Henry, Wr: Elaine May) One of my all time favorite comedies. Warren Beatty is at his most charming and endearing in this film. A stellar supporting cast hits all the marks.

Heavenly Creatures (1994, Dir: Peter Jackson, Wr: Peter Jackson & Fran Walsh) From the opening scene, to the roll of the credits this film grabs you and never lets go. Up until this film, Jackson was mainly known for horror-comedy gore-fests. An incredibly faithful retelling of one of New Zealand’s most shocking crimes, it features the screen debut of Kate Winslet.

1 comment:

  1. From the perspective of having not only the original documentary to go by, but also having known "little" Edie personally, I can say that
    the HBO film, starring Drew Barrymore and Jessica Lang is certainly a perfect tribute to both the original documentary and these two wonderful woman.
    I was told right after filming of the HBO film wrapped up in the fall of 2007, that I would be blown away at the last scene, where Edie sings Tea For Two at Reno Sweeny, and I was ! I had supplied the film company with the only recording in existence of Edie singing the tune, only this wasn't from her actual performance at the club, but rather her singing it just for me at one of my many visits to Grey Gardens, more than 30 years ago. Drew sang it exactly, phrase for phrase as I have it on tape. Edie and I actually met that night at Reno Sweeny, and my relationship with Grey Gardens has now spanned over 3 decades. For our complete review, check out our blog at MyGreyGardens.com (HBO film review by Robb Brawn & Lee Arboreen), and be sure to check our Youtube video uploaded 4/18/09 the same day as the HBO film release. Click
    GREY GARDENS PROMO to view the video
    If you're anywhere near the Philadelphia area, The Philadelphia Theatre company will be presenting Grey Gardens The Musical between May 22nd and June 28th. Check it out here: GREY GARDENS PHILLY

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