This blog will act as a guide and introduction to learning about and enjoying classic cinema. It will be written with those in mind who have little or no knowledge of classic films, and should also prove to be informative and fun for those well versed in cinema. The blog will present one film a week for you to watch (currently one film every other week), with information about the film before you watch it, and sometimes a section to read after you've seen it (which will contain spoilers). This list of movies will be ongoing, and I will do my best to keep adding films (currently every other Tuesday) indefinitely. SUBSCRIBE BELOW so you never miss a post. To see and read about the films in order, scroll to the bottom of this page (or click on THE MOVIES link at the top of this page), and start with film #1 - "All About Eve", and work your way up from there.
Should you happened to have seen any of these films before, I highly recommend watching them again (unless you JUST watched them), for as we grow our perspective change and you will definitely see things you didn’t see before and will probably come away with a new appreciation and understanding of the film. A classic can be seen countless times. I’ve often revisited a film I didn’t particularly like, only to find that I suddenly love it (and vise versa).
The main focus will be movies from the beginning of film though the 1970s, with an emphasis on “classic” films, mostly made during the great Hollywood Studio Era (which ended in the 1960s). There will also be films from the second wave of classic cinema, the late 1960s through the 1970s. While the main focus is on Hollywood films, also included will be cinematic classics from around the world.
The films are not listed “best” to “worst”, but are put in an order to give you a comprehensive, enlightening, and diverse exposure to classic cinema. Most will be in black and white, and many will be in color. You will like some films, not like others, and hopefully discover many you will love. There will be something different each week as we will be viewing films from all genres: drama, comedy, suspense, gangster, western, screwball comedy melodrama, musicals, silent films, world cinema, film noir, horror, science fiction, war films, epics, and more. You will be introduced to just about all the major stars of the time, iconic performances, directors, cinematographers, and writers. It’s pretty much impossible to see every classic film, but I will choose a classic that will expose you to at least one important aspect of cinema.
I’ve been approached many times in my life by people wanting to learn more about classic films, movie stars from the past, and even some directors. I’ve often guided people and have yet to find someone who started watching “old” movies who didn’t find it an exciting and surprising world. Many people who know me, know my heavy film background and come to me for suggestions (you can read more about my background HERE). So after making list after list for people year after year and hosting many movie nights, I've decided to write this blog as an informative guide to open people’s minds and hearts to great films. It is meant for anyone who wants to broaden their experience and knowledge of cinema.
To get the best, most complete experience, I suggest watching the films in the order I have presented them. They will be labeled in numerical order, and were put in that order as a sort of film curriculum. The notes accompanying the films will build on each. Ideally, I suggest you pick your own “movie night’ of the week (perhaps with family, friends, or a special someone) and watch each succeeding film week by week. You can also watch more or less each week as your schedule permits. While in college I constantly went to a repertory movie theater and saw between 3 and 8 films a week - it was heaven!
Not sure if all of these titles are available to view, but I’m choosing films for which I have a BluRay or DVD - so they existed at some point to the public. Nowadays they might be streaming, might be found on the Turner Classic Movie site (TCM), The Criterion Channel, Amazon, Netflix, you might find it at your local library, or even a cheap copy on Ebay. If I can find a streaming link I'll include it. And, by all means, if you happen to see one of these films coming to a theater near you - GO! Even if it’s one you’ve already seen - GO! There is a HUGE difference in seeing a film on the big screen in a theater with strangers, as opposed to on an iPad, phone, or TV (no matter how large). Older films were intended to be watched in a theater, as it forces you to focus on what the director wants you to see instead of seeing the entire screen all at once as on a TV or device. It is a completely different experience, as everything about a film is deepened - the acting, cinematography, directing, lighting, the details - everything! That said, obviously, if you can't see them in a theater, see them anyway you can.
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