What an amazing way to put a bit of juice back into this blog here. I’ve honestly missed being here. Unfortunately, my writing had dropped quite a bit over these past several months; my novel writing also took a drastic hit. Thankfully, I’ve begun getting that back up to speed recently and I’m grateful for this chance to participate in the Classic TV and Film Café’s National Classic Movie Day – 6 Films, 6 Decades Blogathon this year with my favorite movies of the following decades: 1920, 1930, 1940, 1950, 1960, and 1970. Of course, it wasn’t easy to pick just six movies, but it was a worthy challenge! Thanks, Rick!
SUNRISE: A SONG OF TWO HUMANS (1927)
George O’Brien, Janet Gaynor, Margaret Livingston
Directed by F. W. Murnau
An absolutely beautiful silent film. Among the first Academy Award winners of the very first awards program: “Unique and Artistic Picture”, “Best Cinematography”, and “Best Actress in a Leading Role” to Janet Gaynor. Farmer decides to leave his wife for a city woman and along the way he discovers how much more his wife means to him after all. I highly recommend watching this journey and pay attention to George O’Brien’s emotions. My goodness – melts me every time.
THE LITTLE PRINCESS (1939)
Shirley Temple, Richard Greene, Ian Hunter, and Cesar Romero
Directed by Walter Lang
This decade was the toughest one of all. Do you know how many incredible films were created in the 1930s?? Let alone that one shining year of 1939 – which I can’t discuss any further for this post may never end! As I’ve noted in my earlier posts, my mom played a big part of shaping my love for classic films when I was very young. Since this – one of those gems from 1939 – is among the first I remember watching with her, I realized how special this particular movie of the decade is to me. Young girl left in a private school while her father goes to war is determined to prove that her father did not die in the war as she and the school’s headmistress were told – after she’d been banished to the attic with little to no food and the barest necessities since there was no one to pay her room and board. Thanks to the local Saturday and/or Sunday broadcast of “Shirley Temple Theatre”, we had a host of her movies and stands out to me more than the rest. Waiting for and watching Miss Minchin, the school’s headmistress, get her comeuppance is worth every moment and so is the song Sara (Shirley Temple) sings in her dream as she longs to find her father and leave that place.
THE GHOST AND MRS. MUIR (1947)
Gene Tierney, Rex Harrison, Edna Best, George Sanders, and Natalie Wood
Directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz (my birthday twin, BTW)
As much of a wordsmith I can be when writing, I’m actually stumped in describing just how much I love this movie! I just do. As a writer, it truly just touches me so… (Image from the movie is also my twitter header! Yes, that much!) Widow moves into a cottage with her young daughter and maid and befriends the spirit of the sea captain who once lived there (who’d also happened to have terrorized and run off previous tenants of the cottage). Their captivating, ethereal romance blossomed and simply continues to this day – with Bernard Herrmann’s best score (to me and from what I’ve read, his favorite)… it’s on my playlist!
PILLOW TALK (1959)
Doris Day, Rock Hudson, Tony Randall, and Thelma Ritter
Directed by Michael Gordon
My love for movies can often be tied to the connections they give to my life and since my kids love this movie so much, have watched it perhaps more than I, and sing along to all songs in it – it ranks high. First of three Doris Day/Rock Hudson comedies and it’s a gem. Quite racy for its time too! New York songwriter poses as a Texas businessman visiting New York to hide his philandering ways from the woman for which he’s falling. If you haven’t seen it – Do! Gotta also share that my daughter caught me off guard once when she saw Nick Adams in an episode of The Outer Limits and quoted Doris Day’s “You’re a Harvard Man” to him out of the blue! (So now, you must see the movie to understand…) My post about that cherished moment here.
THAT TOUCH OF MINK (1962)
Cary Grant, Doris Day, Gig Young, Audrey Meadows, and John Astin
Directed by Delbert Mann
Of all the incredible movies of this decade, THIS romantic comedy is the first one to come to mind and so it makes its way here; otherwise, I’d still be sitting trying to figure which one to note. According to Robert Osborne, it was the first to earn $1,000,000 in a single theatre at the time… in this case: Radio City Music Hall! Unemployed woman and millionaire try to determine whether or not they’re meant to be together. It’s definitely worth the watch! Doris Day and Cary Grant, of course – but honestly as wonderful as they are here, Gig Young, Audrey Meadows, and John Astin are the ones that kill me! And that fashion show – puts tears in my eyes; the clothes are that stunning. Won the Golden Globe for “Best Comedy Picture”. Highly recommended for a needed laugh. I’ve got the book too.. still on the TBR right now.
SUPERMAN: THE MOVIE (1978)
Christopher Reeve, Margot Kidder, Jackie Cooper, and Marlon Brando
Directed by Richard Donner
This cinematic dynamo still gives me all the feels… my childhood, 70s nostalgia, my memory of the whole thing on the big screen, and I still get goosebumps at the start of John Williams’s theme song (gee, what movie DIDN’T he do in that decade?!). Infant boy sent from his dying planet by his parents to save his life wounds up in a small American town on Earth and discovers that his super strengths and senses can be used to save and protect the humans – and gave us Christopher Reeve. Sigh…
For more favorite films in the decades 1920s – 1960s or even the 1930s – 1970s – be sure to check out the Classic TV and Film Cafe!
What are some of yours? Feel free to share in the comments and thanks for reading!