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K-Man's Top Ten Movies

I get asked frequently about opinions on food, music, art, reading material, hobbies, fashion, and pretty well anything to do with bettering oneself, and of course, this applies to popular films as well. I have always been fascinated with the genre of movie-making and still enjoy the films that made an impression on me when I was a wee lad..

The first film that really made an impact on us as kids was the "Wizard of Oz"..that masterpiece of fantasy from Frank L. Baum..The wicked witch proclaiming the demise of Dorothy's pooch was forever etched into our psyche.. But we have moved on to longer and better stuff since then, haven't we?

So with that in mind, I hereby declare my ten most memorable works of cinema as best as I can remember..

A top ten list can seem so very incomplete, considering the amount of incredible films that have been produced in the last ninety years or so, and you have to try to recall which films made the biggest impression on you, plus the view ability in today's more modern they still stand the test of time? Hopefully they do, and I'm convinced that some of the films seem even grander than they did several years past..but as difficult as it is to
say which "ten" films you like best. I think that these ten would give hours of viewing enjoyment no matter what your tastes happen to be. So without further delay.. here is K-man's fave ten movies of his choice.

p.s. a runner-up list will be submitted in a future issue..

1. Dr. Stranglove

A classic 60's black comedy about an American bomber that goes Awol over Russia and the antics to try to get it back to it's base.The great Peter Sellers has three..yup..count em..three different roles in this movie..all with different accents too.. American as the President of the U.S., a British wing-commander and a German ex-pat working in the weapons program for the U.S. It's absolutely hilarious, but unnerving for it's controversial theme during the cold war..Directed by the late great Stanley Kubrick..who's considered to be one of the very best directors ever..I have seen this movie at least 4 dozen times...more tea, Vicar?

2. Citizen Kane

A difficult film to watch at first, since it is long
and a bit scattered at times. With repeated viewing over time, you will see the little details that make it the true giant of it's day.. A fine cast and possibly the apex of Orson Welles' career, who directs, produces and stars in this classic piece of art..bring lotsa popcorn

3. Zabreski Point

A very loose rendering of late sixties chic, and an anti war film in a way, or a comment on mass commercialism..a no-name cast except for Rod Taylor of 'The Birds" and "Time Machine" fame.. try to follow this one! A recent find for me, I love the feel of this film and the backdrop is spectacular, on location in the Mohave desert..can you say counterculture? Enjoy with margaritas and nachos..

4. Casablanca

I know this is on everyone's top ten list for film but there's a reason! It screams of nostalgia and the support cast is youget to say the lines along with the film since we've seen it so manytimes..Arguably "Bogies" finest work..bring a fine Bordeaux and a tissue box..

5. A Place in the Sun

Don't be fooled by the casual beginnings of this flick..wait til the script picks up about 25 minutes into it and it has all the right stuff for a classic..based on Ted Dreisers ill-fated novel "American Tragedy", a 1920's hard luck story and written from a true crime case as well..a study of one man's plight as he experiences setback after setback until he watches his life spiral into despair..not exactly Disney true, but a fabulous cast starring Liz Taylor, Montgomery Clift and Shelly Winters..go out dancing after this one...

6. Lolita

Ok! I'm a big Stanley Kubrick fan..but don't hate me for it! The guy could make the most compelling films, dammit! Almost banned on it's initial release because of the subject matter..another great film based on an equally great novel by Vlad Nabokov.. James Mason and Shelly Winters are stellar in this..Plus Peter Sellers has a forceful role in it.. The story is about a stepfather who has an
intimate relationship with his stepdaughter after his wife is tragically killed. Loaded with double entendres and a very brave film for it's
time, the conservative side of the early sixties..not a movie to watch with the kids..try to explain!

7. Forbidden Planet

Since I have been keenly interested in science
fiction stories since I was a tot, it would seem normal that I would be captivated by the film depiction of them as well.. As a boy, there was
always a good sci-fi film showing on the telly on Saturday afternoons, and I made a point of seeing them as often as possible..Nothing could have prepared me for this "monster"..Having been edited with the ground breaking graphics effects of it's day, the whole story reeks of a Shakespearean play. .Someone once suggested it was loosely based on "The
Tempest"! Anyway, a wayward rocket ship lands on "Altair Seven", a remote planet with a mad scientist who holds dark secrets which
ultimately unveils some strange surprises for the crew who has ventured there.. No real stars except "Robbie the Robot". A bit cartoonish compared to some of todays grand effects showcases, but it's still a fantasticstory. Bring tons of licorice and rum..

8. From Here to Eternity

I was reintroduced to this film again not long
ago and realized how much I still enjoy it. I also read the James Jones novel it was derived
from and thought it better, but as seems to be the norm..the film never gives the equal amount of quality as the book does, in that your brain can conjure up a more detailed cast of characters! But for it's time this picture has it all..a great script, good cast and the setting is beautiful glorious black and white! Plus the final scenes of Pearl Harbor being attacked are as dramatic as in any film..Enjoy this with pizza..ham and pineapple of course.

9. 2001-A Space Odyssey

All right already!..again another Kubrick classic..maybe his best? I saw this film in the theater when it was released in 1969..without any extra-sensory help either! It still has the same impact on me..does anyone know what the ending means? Who cares! and I don't wanna know either..So unless you have been living in a cave for the last 35 years you know this great classic sci-fimovie. Again, one of Kubricks usual"no-name" casts, the subject matter is the birth of man and space travelin it's infancy and a lot of other surreal cinemagraphic suggestions..Everyone I have spoke to about about this movie interprets it differently..How will you see it? The glass half-full or half-empty? Based loosely on a novella by my all-time favorite sci-fi author,
Arthur C. Clarke..View with "Tang" orange drink and a TV dinner..!

10. The English Patient

Since I have been referring to films from quite some time ago, I thought I would mention a more recent title of note..I just loved this one!
It has all the right things..Great music, script, cast and the setting is sensational! Juliette Binoche is stunning and Ralph Fiennes is convincing as the ill-wrought archeologist who is stricken when his airplane is shot down in the North African desert during the Second World War. They just don't make enough of these kind of films for me..This is what makes film-going fun. By the way..was it 9 Oscars it won? With good reason I think.. Cous-Cous and beer for this great yarn..
SO! There it is..realize of course there is barely a single comedy or animated feature here..see! it's impossible to list them all, but that means there will be a sequel! of the top ten list.. you goof!

Thanks for reading!