Any Classic Film Recommendations?

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Eric Brunton, Jul 23, 2003.

  1. Eric Brunton

    Eric Brunton Agent

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    I recently bought Lawrence of Arabia 2 disc edition and i was blown away. I have not watched (or own) too many classic films and was wondering if anyone could recommend any similar films? Thanks!
     
  2. Jeff_HR

    Jeff_HR Producer

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    Off the top of my head I'd recommend the following:

    1 Spartacus - Criterion
    2 Gone With The Wind
    3 The Bridge Over The River Kwai
    4 Patton
    5 The Great Escape
    6 The Guns of Navarone
    7 Ben-Hur
    8 Paths of Glory
    9 King of Kings

    You can see that several are War related. This is just my 2¢ worth. I'm sure others will suggest other titles. [​IMG]
     
  3. Holadem

    Holadem Lead Actor

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    Start by joining the AFI 100 Movies challenge and the Sight and Sound Film Club in the movie forum.

    --
    Holadem
     
  4. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    See 20 recommendations in my signature. [​IMG]
     
  5. oscar_merkx

    oscar_merkx Lead Actor

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    Akira Kurosawa's Seven Samurai & Throne of Blood amongst others

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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    Doctor Zhivago has a very elegant DVD out. Not only does it have a beautiful video transfer and a nice 5.1 remix, the extras are very worthwhile.
     
  7. MattHenderson

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    Not knowing your taste in films, it's difficult to make recommendations, but if you're open to watching subtitled movies (or speak Japanese) then Kurosawa is a great choice. I'd recommend "Seven Samurai" or "Yojimbo." "The Bridge on the River Kwai" forms a natural sort of companion to "Lawrence of Arabia," both from David Lean during the same period in his career. Based on my own DVD collection, I'll try to put together a list of what I think are the best films from, say, the '30s to the mid-'60s (seems arbitrarily representative of 'classic' films to me). Pardon the numberous omissions, but there are still a number of great films that aren't on DVD, or that I don't have in my collection (or *gasp* I haven't seen!). Ignoring films that are not in English, I'd suggest the following (in no particular order):

    "The Bridge on the River Kwai"
    "Double Indemnity"
    "The Third Man"
    "The 39 Steps"
    "The Big Sleep"
    "The Maltese Falcon"
    "Sunset Blvd."
    "Stalag 17"
    "Some Like It Hot"
    "Dr. Strangelove"
    "The Apartment"
    "Casablanca"
    "Citizen Kane"
    "Rear Window"
    "Paths of Glory"
    "Strangers on a Train"
    "Notorious"
    "North by Northwest"
    "Vertigo"
    "Psycho"
    "Sweet Smell of Success"
    "Touch of Evil"
    "His Girl Friday"
    "The Hustler"
    "It Happened One Night"
    "It's a Wonderful Life"
    "Kiss Me Deadly"
    "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance"
    "Stagecoach"
    "The Searchers"
    "The Night of the Hunter"
    "On the Waterfront"
    "A Streetcar Named Desire"
    "Singin' in the Rain"
    "Black Narcissus"
    "The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp"
    "The Red Shoes"
     
  8. Paul_Scott

    Paul_Scott Lead Actor

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    if you mean that you want something epic, that takes its time with its themes, and where you get the time to really immerse yourself in the characters and story-
    i would say Kwai is a great choice.
    I liked The Sand Pebbles quite a bit also (and its a very good, inexpensive disc)

    The Man Who Would Be King was quite entertaining as well-not as highbrow as LOA, but very competently made.

    Spartacus is another good 60's era epic.
    another film that has a somewhat smaller 'epic' feel to it, & more firmly lands on the side of simple popcorn fun is Kirk Douglas in The Vikings-also available on a good disc that can be found under $10.

    The Great Escape is an exceptional adventure film. unfortuantely you'll have to wait a while for a decent disc of it to show up on R1. unless you have a region free PAL player- i've had the R4 SE for about a year and its quite an improvement over the R1 disc in just about every way.
     
  9. Eric Brunton

    Eric Brunton Agent

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    Thank you all for the recommendations, it seems that I have some time to spend with my home theater. I think I'm going to start with The Bridge Over the River Kwai and go from there. So many movies so little time!
     
  10. Peter M Fitzgerald

    Peter M Fitzgerald Screenwriter

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    And when THE DEVIL AND DANIEL WEBSTER (1941) arrives on DVD this September, via Criterion, be advised that this also is a must-see classic film (though not in the "epic" category).

    A few others, not yet mentioned:

    THE GENERAL (1926)
    THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME (1939)
    GREAT EXPECTATIONS (1946)
    OLIVER TWIST (1948)
    THE BIG HEAT (1953)
    INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS (1956)
    HEAVEN KNOWS MR. ALLISON (1958)
    EXPERIMENT IN TERROR (1962)
    DAMN THE DEFIANT! (1962)
    THE PROFESSIONALS (1966)

    --so many, many more...
     
  11. Nick Senger

    Nick Senger Stunt Coordinator

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    I did not get interested in watching classic films until I got my DVD player three years ago, and since then it's become my newest favorite hobby (verging on obsession). I didn't know which films to watch or buy, so I spent fascinating hours on the internet (including joining this forum), and I put together this list. It is a simple summary of what others have said are the greatest films of all time.

    Maybe it will help you. It's been a great list for me. At the very least, the links at the bottom of the page should give you more places to check.
     
  12. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    That is an interesting compilation, Nick. All worthy films.

    Holadem already suggested The AFI 100 movies challenge and the Sight and Sound Club. There is also a 30s best 100 challenge going on.

    In addition to the lists themselves this threads have a reasonable amount of discussion on some of the films. As we are not all in agreement, reading through some of this might give you a perspective on which films you will enjoy the most.
     
  13. SteveGon

    SteveGon Executive Producer

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    Off the top of my head:

    Odd Man Out - James Mason and Robert Newton star in this IRA thriller set in Ireland. Directed by Carol Reed (The Third Man).

    Of Mice and Men - The 1939 version starring Burgess Meredith and Lon Chaney.

    Two classic comedies: Sullivan's Travels and My Man Godfrey, both from Criterion.

    Two Ronald Colman classics: Lost Horizon and A Double Life (the latter just released on DVD).

    Only Angels Have Wings - Fun adventure film about mail pilots in South America. Stars Cary Grant, Jean Arthur, and Rita Hayworth. Directed by Howard Hawks.

    Siberian Lady MacBeth - Noirish adaptation of a certain Shakespeare play, set in the Russian outback. Directed by the great Polish director Andrzej Wajda, this is the only one of his films currently on DVD.


    Some of these are a bit obscure, but they're well worth searching out. [​IMG]
     
  14. ShaunS

    ShaunS Stunt Coordinator

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    Just finished watching West Side Story. Jaw dropping.

    ShaunS
     
  15. Mark Lemmond

    Mark Lemmond Stunt Coordinator

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    Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
     
  16. Derek_McL

    Derek_McL Second Unit

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    Classic film recommendations Eric,where to start there are just so many great films from the 20s to the 60s.

    I love Lawrence of Arabia too and I second the recommendations of The Bridge on the River Kwai, Spartacus and The Great Escape which are all great action films with an epic scale to match.

    Another one from the same period well worth considering which I really enjoyed and didn't expect too was the infamous Elizabeth Taylor/ Richard Burton Cleopatra which has a great performance from Rex Harrison as Julius Caesar and some great battle sequences and jaw-dropping images (entrance of Cleopatra into Rome). Its certainly not perfect but I thought it was a lot better than its reputation particularly in the first half. The film is a three disc set jam-packed with extras highlighted by a fascinating 2 hour documentary about the making of the film which is probably worth the price of admission alone.

    More thought-provoking war films are headed for me (despite all the good modern ones) by All Quiet on the Western Front and Paths of Glory. The former is old (1930) and the disc is barebones with a print that is pretty rough but to me this is still the greatest anti-war film ever made and well worth seeing. Paths is also good but again could do with some restoration although they are both perfectly watchable.

    Away from the epics and war movies there sadly aren't many really good costume pictures on DVD (you know swashbucklers etc) although the forthcoming release of The Adventures of Robin Hood and The Mark of Zorro will help matters. Both are must buys for fans of action movies.

    If you like a good traditional western Warner have good DVDs of John Ford's The Searchers and Howard Hawks' Rio Bravo two of the masterworks of the genre. They have limited extras but the transfers are fine.

    As I said so many films but I hope this has been of some help and good luck Eric possibly discovering these classics and so many others.
     
  17. Josh Steinberg

    Josh Steinberg Lead Actor
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    Anything Frank Capra, but especially "Lost Horizon" and "It Happened One Night"

    Check out anything with Katharine Hepburn, and run, don't walk, to your DVD store to rent "The Philadelphia Story" - with Hepburn, Cary Grant, James Stewart, as directed by George Cukor, you can't go wrong. It is one of the greats.

    Any Marx Brothers movie will be fine, especially "Duck Soup" (on DVD) and "A Night At The Opera" (not on DVD). W.C. Fields is also a must - "The Bank Dick" is on DVD, unfortunately, "It's A Gift" is not, though you can still get it on video.

    "The Day The Earth Stood Still"

    "The Maltese Falcon" and "The Big Sleep"

    ...and, of course, "Singin' In The Rain"
     
  18. Jon_Are

    Jon_Are Cinematographer

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    Eric,

    I was going to suggest just one film: The Bridge on the River Kwai, but I see you're already planning on viewing it.

    Please post back and let us know what you think.

    (if you like it, I'll offer a second recommendation[​IMG])

    Jon
     
  19. Jim Peavy

    Jim Peavy Supporting Actor

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    ... such as the original Little Women, also directed by George Cukor.

    This movie is an absolute delight!
     
  20. Jarrod Ferris

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    How come nobody has mentioned TOUCH OF EVIL?
     

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