List o’ the Week: My Top 25 Films

Possessed (1931) is new to the list.

Possessed (1931) is new to the list.

Nearly 15 years ago, in spring 2000, the editor of the Classic Images newspaper, Bob King, invited readers to share their top 25 classic movies. I recently came across the list that I sent in, and was interested to see how my favorites have changed over the years. So for my list of the week, I decided to create another top 25 list, 2014 style.

Every film on the list had to meet my personal criteria: (1) it had to be one of those movies that I’ve watched over and over again, and (2) when I thought of it, I had to say, “OH! I LOVE that movie!”

A total of 15 films from my first list made it onto this year’s version. But a whopping 10 did not: Strangers on a Train, Laura, My Man Godfrey, Sunset Boulevard, Midnight, Born Yesterday, A Streetcar Named Desire, The Wizard of Oz, Gilda, and Come Back, Little Sheba. (Come Back, Little Sheba?? I mean, it’s a great movie, but come on. What was I thinking?)

Another newbie, Bombshell is hilarious.

Another newbie, Bombshell is hilarious.

Here’s this year’s funky-fresh edition of my 25 favorite movies – the films that are new to this list are marked with an asterisk.

All About Eve

The Big Heat *

Bombshell *

Criss Cross *

Dinner At Eight

The Divorcee *

Double Indemnity

Gaslight *

Gone With the Wind

The Heiress

His Girl Friday

Imitation of Life (1959 version)

The Killing made both the 2000 and the 2014 list. (Naturally.)

The Killing made both the 2000 and the 2014 list. (Naturally.)

It’s a Wonderful Life

The Killing

The Little Foxes

Mildred Pierce

Platinum Blonde *

Possessed (1931 version) *

The Postman Always Rings Twice

Private Lives

Red Dust *

This hilarious Barrymore-Lombard film just HAD to be on the list!

Twentieth Century. This hilarious Barrymore-Lombard film just HAD to be on the list!

Twentieth Century *

The Women

You Can’t Take It With You *

Young and Willing (1943) (You may never have heard of this one – I don’t know anybody else who’s ever seen it, but it’s a hoot! I watch it ALL the time.)

What are your top 25 films? List them here, or share them on your blog! It might be hard to come up with a final list, but it’s a lot of fun!!

~ by shadowsandsatin on March 23, 2014.

20 Responses to “List o’ the Week: My Top 25 Films”

  1. Hmm, the only two on your list that I haven’t seen are Possessed (which I will have to catch soon!) and Young and Willing. Out of curiosity, I looked up Y&W on IMDB and there are three movies with that title! Which one are you talking about?

    As for my own top 25, I don’t think it would fit my blog’s topic very well– and I’m sure to be judged by other classic film fans considering what a weird wide range I’ve got. But I will share it with you since you were so kind to share your excellent list.🙂

    Amelie
    Animal Crackers
    Back to the Future
    Beyond the Valley of the Dolls
    Charade
    Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (32 version, natch!)
    Duck Soup
    A Face in the Crowd
    Fargo
    Heathers
    Inherit the Wind
    Love and Death
    Murder, My Sweet
    My Best Friend’s Wedding
    North by Northwest
    Return of the Killer Tomatoes
    Rock ‘n’ Roll High School
    Roman Holiday
    The Seventh Seal
    Sex and Fury
    Singin’ in the Rain
    Some Like It Hot
    Sunset Boulevard
    The Unbelievable Truth
    The Young Girls of Rochefort

    • Thanks so much for sharing your list, Danny — I loved it! A wide range, indeed, and so interesting! I will be looking up these two, which I’ve never heard of — The Unbelievable Truth and Sex and Fury. The Young Girls of Rochefort is familiar, but I can’t remember what I read about it — something good, as I recall. Beyond the Valley of the Dolls and Return of the Killer Tomatoes may interest me most of all! LOL

  2. What a fascinating experiment! One might surmise that you are a pretty big Jean Harlow fan, mightn’t they?

    I’ll have to think about my top 25, and may run up a post on the subject. Today you not only entertain, but you inspire.

    • Thanks, CW! I’m quite fond of Jean Harlow, but although she’s not in my top three favorite actresses (Davis-Crawford-Stanwyck), so many of her films are among my faves! Curious. I look forward to seeing your list!

  3. Great list! I did one of these a while ago for people who keep asking me what my favorite “old” movie is: http://www.istavisio.com/6/post/2011/07/an-oldie-but-a-goodie.html, but I need to do a series revision.

    • I loved your list, Beth, and especially how you had the different categories — thank you for sharing it! Stage Door was a last-minute deletion from my list, and you really have me second-guessing my picks with A Letter to Three Wives (it certainly fits my criteria — I LOVE that movie)! Interestingly, Wuthering Heights was another one that gave me great pause — I just couldn’t include it because it really does not make me happy, if you know what I mean. It’s riveting, and I’ve seen it countless times, but oh my gosh, I spend most of the movie wanting to strangle somebody. LOL

  4. Now you have me wanting to do the same … I’ve never done a list like this on my blog, and it will definitely be a challenge. I love every single movie you list (except I haven’t seen Young and Willing). I’m going to work on it. Loved yours!

  5. You’ve got a great entertaining list, and I’m glad to see The Little Foxes get noticed! (I know it was a major film at the time, but I’ve only seen it discussed more than a mention once, on another film blog.)

    These are my top 25 favorite films made before I was born- I’m a relative youngster in the film blog world, though. They’re somewhat but not strictly in order of how much I like them.

    1) The Star Wars Original Trilogy
    2) Le samouraï
    3) The Godfather: Part II
    4) Gun Crazy
    5) The Set-Up (1949)
    6) Sherlock, Jr.
    7) The Conversation
    8) Night and the City
    9) Fantasia (1940)
    10) Psycho
    11) State Fair (1933)
    12) High Noon/Act of Violence
    both are Fred Zinneman movies with a similar climax
    13) Roman Holiday
    14) Ikiru
    15) The Rules of the Game
    16) The Fallen Idol
    17) The Manchurian Candidate (1962)
    18) Laura (1944)
    19) The Lady Vanishes (1938)
    20) M (1931)
    21) Eyes Without a Face
    22) The Fall of the House of Usher (1928, short)
    23) A Fistful of Dollars
    24) Fail-Safe (1964)
    25) History is Made at Night (1937)

    • I really like your list, Diandra – and of course I’m giving the thumbs-up to all the noirs! I love that you included three of my favorites — Gun Crazy, The Set-Up, and Night and the City. WOW. I’ve never heard of Ikiru or Eyes Without a Face — I’m going to go read up on those! I was intrigued by your commend that High Noon and Act of Violence had a similar climax — to be honest, I really don’t think I’ve ever seen High Noon all the way through! Now I will have to!

  6. I’m back. I sat down and cobbled a list together with the first 25 movies that came to mind. They have yet to wear out their welcome.

    The Big Country
    Black Angel
    Bringing Up Baby
    Charlie Chan at Treasure Island
    A Christmas Carol (1951)

    A Christmas Story
    His Girl Friday
    The Kidnappers
    The Lady Vanishes
    Meet Me in St. Louis

    The Miracle of Morgan’s Creek
    Murder, My Sweet
    My Darling Clementine
    The Quiet Man
    Ruggles of Red Gap

    Seven Brides for Seven Brothers
    Shane
    Sons of the Desert
    Stagecoach
    The Strawberry Blonde

    Sunset Boulevard
    The Sunshine Boys
    The Thing from Another World
    Top Hat
    True Grit

    Whew!

    • Love your interesting list, CW! I see you’re fond of westerns (and John Wayne!), huh? I’m not familiar with The Kidnappers — I am heading over to imdb to read up on it right now! Also, do you know I just saw The Sunshine Boys for the first time just a couple of weeks ago? I remember when it came out, but I was never interested. It was so good!

  7. This is a challenge…I’m not going to alphabetize, but here goes:

    Out of the Past
    Gilda
    Vertigo
    Bombshell
    Imitation of Life
    Madame X (Lana Turner version)
    They shoot Horses Don’t They
    L’Aventurra
    The Misfits
    You Were Never Lovelier
    The 7th Victim
    Night and the City
    Sweet Smell of Success
    Force of Evil
    Sullivan’s Travels
    Too Late for Tears
    All That Heaven Allows
    The Passenger
    The Thin Man
    The Women
    42nd Street
    Scarlet Street
    The Killing
    Jeanne Eagels
    Red Headed Woman

    • What a great set of movies, Charles — and several I know absolutely nothing about – The Passenger, L’Aventurra, and The 7th Victim. I remember seeing parts of They Shoot Horses, Don’t They? when I was little, and not really understanding what the heck was going on (besides the fact that there was a grueling dance marathon). Your inclusion on your list makes me want to check it out.

  8. Well, its tough just to do 25 but here goes:
    Laura
    The Wild Bunch
    Charade
    Murder My. Sweet
    The Professionals
    Le Samourai
    Rider on the Rain
    Casablanca
    Marlowe
    Grand Prix
    Marnie
    La Dolce Vita
    La Guerre est Finis
    Le Circle Rouge
    Vera Cruz
    The Dark Corner
    Hickey and Boggs
    Harper
    The Guns of Navarone
    The Getway
    Bullitt
    The Cincinnati Kid
    The Bridge on the River Kwai
    The Spy Who Came in From the Cold
    The Long Goodbye
    Blue Velvet
    I could go on. They used to make some pretty good flicks.

    • I see a number of foreign films here, David — I think the only one I’ve heard of is La Dolce Vita. I don’t know much about it, but I think I’d like to see it. And I see several Steve McQueen pictures, too — are you a big fan? I saw his first wife, Neile, at the TCM film fest last month showing home movies of McQueen and their children. I’ll bet you would have loved it! Thanks for sharing your list!

  9. They Shoot Horses should be right up your alley–set in early 30s Hollywood and based on a novel by Horace McCoy, who is a very noir writer. 7th Victim is my favorite of the Val Lewton films–great blend of far fetch plot, horror and noir; and L’Aventurra and Passenger are my two favorite Antonioni’s films. I’ve seen every film on your list, except You Can’t Take it With You–something I will have to correct!

  10. That’s a great list Karen! We have a few in common and I love several others on your list. You are so right, it was hard to narrow it down but was also very fun. I love making lists! Here’s mine:

    1. Platinum Blonde
    2. It Happened One Night
    3. The Thin Man
    4. The Razor’s Edge
    5. The Awful Truth
    6. All This and Heaven Too
    7. His Girl Friday
    8. The Philadelphia Story
    9. The Shop Around the Corner
    10. The Lady Eve
    11. Sullivan’s Travels
    12. Casablanca
    13. Now Voyager
    14. Shadow of a Doubt
    15. Double Indemnity
    16. Gaslight
    17. Notorious
    18. Humoresque
    19. The Ghost and Mrs. Muir
    20. The Third Man
    21. Singin’ in the Rain
    23. Rear Window
    24. Vertigo
    25. Anatomy of a Murder

    • I love your list, Ginny, and have seen almost all of them — and love them!. Do you know, though, that I still have not seen The Shop Around the Corner all the way through? Crazy, because I love both Margaret Sullavan and Jimmy Stewart. I will have to bump it up to the top of my list!

  11. Great list!

    I can never come up with these things, ’cause there are just so many, but I’ll try:

    Favorite CLASSIC movies

    The Apartment
    Casablanca
    All about Eve
    The Philadelphia Story
    Some Like it Hot
    Bringing up Baby
    Laura
    Sunset Boulevard
    Out of the Past
    Meet me in St Louis
    Rear Window
    The Lady Eve
    Notorious
    The Awful Truth
    The Big Combo
    Vertigo
    Gilda
    Woman of the Year
    Stage Door
    It’s a wonderful life
    Duck Soup
    An affair to remember
    On the waterfront
    12 angry men

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