Best of the 1920s

The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920)The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920)

Francis recounts the time he exposed Dr. Caligari as a murderous sociopath who hypnotized one of his patients to commit his crimes. As he finishes his story, we learn Francis is actually patient at an insane asylum and his account is his latest delusion.

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87th Academy Awards post mortem

Best Supporting Actor

J. K. Simmons deserved to win and if he’d been nominated for Best Actor (he’s really a co-lead), he might have still won. Terrence Fletcher was the best performance of the year and will be one of the most talked about and analyzed performances for some time.

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Don’t forget your mementos

215px-Memento_posterMemento (2000)

Leonard was viciously attacked and now suffers from anterograde amnesia.   Deprived of the ability to make new memories, every day he has to start over while the world around him changes.   He can’t develop new relationships, he can’t get a job; the only thing he can do is obsess and despair over his unfortunate predicament.

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Gleaning Miracles from the Edges of the Future

The Gleaners and I (2000)

The Gleaners and I (2000)

Agnes Varda’s beautiful film follows gleaners at work, from people who depend on the practice for survival to hobbyists. She exposes how connected we are and shines a light on our coldness to the needs of others as she pointedly interviews jurists about the seemingly arbitrary French laws which prohibit some forms of gleaning while encouraging others.

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Kubrick’s Order

Killer's Kiss (1955)13) Killer’s Kiss (1955)

One night, unlucky boxer Davey hears screams coming from the home of his attractive neighbor Gloria.

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Best of the 1930s

175px-BloodofapoetThe Blood of a Poet (1930)

The first part of Jean Cocteau’s Orphic trilogy is a surrealist fever dream.

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A Royal Resume

Despite her retirement from Hollywood at age 26 to become the Princess of Monaco, Grace Kelly was ranked the 13th greatest female film star by the American Film Institute.

Because she retired so young, her public image was frozen as a young, beautiful woman and her marriage into royalty created a unique mystique among American celebrities. Add a tragic and unexpected death, and you have a recipe for a legendary career.

This is my ranked list of her films.

High Society (1956)7) High Society (1956)

Successful jazz musician C.K. Dexter Haven (Bing Crosby) remains enamored with his ex-wife, socialite Tracy Lord (Grace Kelly), but she is about to marry George Kittredge. To complicate things even further, she develops feelings for Mike Connor (Frank Sinatra) a tabloid newspaper reporter covering her wedding.

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Best of the 1940s

His Girl Friday (1940)His Girl Friday (1940)

Walter Burns (Cary Grant) is an editor for The Morning Post.  His ex-wife, Hildy Johnson (Rosalind Russell), was a star reporter for his paper, but quit when she got engaged to Bruce Baldwin (Ralph Bellamy).

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Welcome to the really Big Show

The Truman ShowThe Truman Show (1998)

As he turns 30, a series of events leads Truman Burbank to suspect everything is not as it seems and begin an investigation which leads to an unsettling discovery: he’s the unwitting star of a reality television show. His entire life has been filmed by hidden cameras and broadcast on a dedicated network.

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Dean’s List

Despite only appearing in three major films before his death at age 24, James Dean was ranked the 18th greatest male film star by the American Film Institute.

This is my ranked list of his films.

Rebel Without a Cause (1955)

3) Rebel Without a Cause (1955)

Teenager Jim Stark (James Dean) moves to Los Angeles with his parents and befriends outcasts Plato (Sal Mineo) and Judy (Natalie Wood). When bullies goad Jim into a game of chicken, it ends in a tragic accident, which, in turn, leads to a confrontation with police at the Griffith Observatory.

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