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Sunday, March 17, 2013


It was made in 1942.
The Allies were losing WWII.
Refugees all across Europe and Africa were being dragged back
to concentration camps and slow death.
This film cast a defiant statement at Nazi Germany;
"You may kill us, but you will not break our spirit."
The movie crackles with rapid-fire dialogue.
The movie debuted in 1942, while sound film was in its relative infancy.
Filmmakers during this period began to take full advantage of the asset of sound,
and films became dialogue-driven rather than using a mainly visual narrative style.
Director Michael Curtiz implements the emerging technology with expertise.
The quick rapport between the characters drives the plot—
if you don’t pay attention,
you can miss a crucial plot point inlaid in an aside between passing characters.
Smarmy remarks and snappy retorts are tossed across card tables and over drinks.
In a perfect example, the slimy character Ugarte (Peter Lorre) inquires of our hero,
“You despise me, don’t you?”
Rick replies offhandedly:
“If I gave you any thought, I would.”
This film speaks of love, sacrifice, and courage
across the ages.
The Ring Trilogy embodies the kind of innocence that belongs to an earlier, gentler time.
It speaks of friendship, love, and sacrifice.
Are you seeing a pattern yet?
STAR TREK movies are only as good as their villains.
Khan was the best.
Again themes of friendship, sacrifice, and the meaning of life ...
and death.
The best movies have fun.
And a child-like sense of wonder, awe, and magic.
This one had it all.
The sands will rise.  The heavens will part.
Horror will be unleashed.
The League of Five would have loved this movie!
Recent Hollywood escapist movies have become too jaded and cynical,
and they have lost the feeling that you can stumble over astounding adventures just by going on a hike with your Scout troop.
Or by bringing your Dad along!

How can you not love a movie whose hero is named
Again, friendship, love, and sacrifice.
And FUN!

Excellent werewolf pic was “too British” to get a U.S. theatrical release!?
Again, humor, horror, friendship, and
Plus the dog survives at the end. :-)
It had heart, depth, and made you care.
The heroine fell in love with Steve Rogers
when he was scrawny.
The end, of course, was of love and sacrifice.
A woman faces her greatest fear
to keep her word to a terrified little girl.
"Aliens" is absolutely, painfully and unremittingly intense for at least its last hour. 
 I have never seen a movie that maintains such a pitch of intensity for so long;
it's like being on some kind of hair-raising carnival ride that never stops.
VICTOR STANDISH MUST DIE! now at #55 in free Paranormal Fantasy


  1. Aliens! You rock.
    Raiders tops my Indiana Jones movies, but that one is a close second. Same with Wrath of Khan.
    Excellent choices, Roland.
    Thanks for participating in my blogfest!

  2. Alex:
    The next Alien movies I pretended were just nightmares Ripley had while in cryo-sleep!

    LAST CRUSADE had Sean Connery in it! I had to go with that movie reluctantly over RAIDERS.

    I've seen WRATH too often to watch it anymore -- know it too well. :-)

    I realize that there are quality movies I left out -- but I watch movies to be entertained and to have fun -- depressed I can get for free! :-)

    I was happy to join your blogfest!

  3. Great choices. I think I've watched them all.

    I haven't got my post finished yet; keep getting distracted.


  4. Donna:
    I thought I would post while I had the time and before the ax at work got me! :-)

  5. Your choices are fantastic! Most of them would make my top 10 list too! Great minds think alike. ;)

  6. Heather:
    Probably DOG SOLDIERS wouldn't I bet. It's a guy movie, although there is one major female character who I never trusted from the internal logic of the movie!

    Yes, I believe we do think alike! Movies, first and foremost, have to be fun. I love your St. Patrick's Day post and design!

    Do you do book trailers?

  7. We have some faves in common too (Casablanca and LOTR and I forgot about Indiana Jones - I'm a big fan of Harrison Ford).

    I like the little bits you included too. I never tire of Casablanca, especially the last scenes.

    Great choices, Roland. My list will be up Monday, I've got it scheduled. I've also got my fingers crossed re-the your work situation.

  8. Casablanca, Indiana Jones...would have put them on my list too, but ran out of room, lol!

  9. After reading your post, I am looking forward to this. Your post is particular useful, plz keep going. Sometimes I sell runescape accounts to gain more money.

  10. The Mummy, Indiana Jones, and How to Train Your Dragon, those are all awesome movies! I also loved Captain America, but The Avengers is on my list. I love the awesome dialog in that flick. :)

  11. D.G.:
    Thanks for the good thoughts about the upcoming downsizing and possible elimination of me.

    I never tire of CASABLANCA either, the scene in the club where they sing the French national anthem is a classic.

    I'm working tomorrow at least, so I will check your post when I get home. :-)

    I'm interested in seeing your list!

    I wish you luck in raising money. I may be in your boat soon.

    Loved the dialogue in THE AVENGERS:

    Bruce Banner: I don't think we should be focusing on Loki. That guy's brain is a bag full of cats. You can smell crazy on him.

    Thor: Have a care how you speak! Loki is beyond reason, but he is of Asgard and he is my brother!

    Natasha Romanoff: He killed eighty people in two days.

    Thor: He's adopted.

  12. I knew as soon as I posted my top ten, I'd see one on someone else's list and say, "How could I have forget that one?" From your list, it has to be Star Wars. Aliens would be a close second. ("Get away from her, you bitch!")

  13. LOTR changed films proved that magic can sell.

  14. We share many of the same films, I think for me I always thought I could be a super hero as a child/boy... that is why I was drawn close to films I could be a good guy... a hero.

  15. Ah, 'Casablanca', another one I forgot. I love that film. A whole lot of other great choices too. Thanks.

  16. I love your reasons for choosing Casablanca. So many excellent choices here!

  17. I was sorely tempted to include the Mummy franchise in my top 10 list, but had to balance the action with some comedy.

  18. Hi,

    Loved the list a few would have been honorable mentions for my list. Thanks for sharing these great films. :)

    Come see my top 10 at

  19. Oh, I thought about Aliens and Indiana Jones, too. And I think most of the lists I've seen have Lord of the Rings!

  20. LD:
    For me that film was THE PRINCESS BRIDE. When I saw it on Hart's list, I went AAAARGH! :-)

    And the 8 HARRY POTTERS film helped a bit too. Although you are right, LOTR persuaded Hollywood that magic could be sold to adults. And adults need a bit of magic back in their lives the most!

    As a child, it was always BATMAN or GREEN LANTERN (as a child I had plenty of will power! Won't Power was as high in me!)

    CASABLANCA always speaks to me. Since it was filmed when we were unsure who would win WWII.

    Shell Flower:
    The dialogue. The courage under oppression. The sacrifice for the greater good despite the pain. CASABLANCA is a true classic that was crafted during, not after, the fact. :-)

    There was comedy admist the action in THE MUMMY. :-) But you have a point: I was tempted to list TRAINS, PLANES, AND AUTOMOBILES or UNCLE BUCK in my list, too.

    Unless the blood center calls me in early, I am heading your way.

    How could the lists not have LOTR? :-) Love your list especially THE PRINCESS BRIDE. :-)

  21. Aliens seems to be on everyone's list, and I've *blush* never seen it. Must make amends. :)

    Love Casablanca. It was on my and I deleted it for Mary Poppins—go figure. Great to see it here, Roland!

    ~VR Barkowski

  22. Casablanca and Star Wars. Great list.

  23. I love How to Train Your Dragon! Unfortunately had to cut it from my list in favor of Finding Nemo :S

  24. Fantastic choices! I really like the Indiana Jones movies!

  25. I like a bunch of movies you listed. I found it so difficult to narrow my favorites down to ten. Aliens, LOTR, Captain America, Indiana Jones, all were great. (:

  26. awesome list! i've see seen most of them and I enjoyed the descriptions.

  27. Love me some Captain America!!!

  28. I would definitely come over for a movie night at your house. Great picks.

  29. So glad to see Dragon on so many lists today. It makes this animation nerd happy. :)

  30. The Last Crusade is on my list too.

    And I can't believe that I forgot about Dog Soldiers!


  31. M.J.:
    I am a CASABLANCA fan for sure! :-)

    The ghost of Bogey is not pleased with you for bumping him for MARY POPPINS! :-)

    ALIENS is a bit intense for the last hour -- come prepared!

    I'm glad you liked my picks!

    I like how you divided your ten into genre. :-)

    I liked the first and 3rd, the second not so much. Too dark.

    We all liked some of the same movies. Have you noticed?

    I'm glad you liked my descriptions of each movie selection. :-)


    Now, if Chris Evans would just knock on your door, right? :-)

    I have a pretty large DVD selection. Sandra says I should buy a large flat screen tv and pop popcorn and sell tickets! :-)

    Are you aware of the CARTOON NETWORK DRAGON series?

    DOG SOLDIERS is my list of guilty pleasure, along with Carpenter's THE THING. :-)

  32. ...a list for the ages, well done!

    Aliens would top my gathering of elites ;)


  33. Great choices, very diverse but I like how you found a common thread.

  34. Love the choices! I forgot to put some of these on my list. How to Train your Dragon is adorable. The Mummy freaks me out, but it's so good!

    Allison (Geek Banter)

  35. Quite the epic list you have here :) Nice!

  36. Elliot:
    I've forgotten how many times I watched ALIENS. I had a crush on Vasquez of all people! :-)

    I found that common thread in most of my favorite movies, diverse though they might look on the surface. I have the autographed poster of THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION in my TV room for inspiration. :-)

    Yes, those scarabs that burrowed under the skin and ate you alive were a bit much!!

    I still watch my favorite scenes from HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON!

    Trisha F:
    Yes, I am into epic! :-)

  37. Aliens definitely rock! I didn't think so many people would pick them ;)

  38. Marta:
    I have been surprised that a few of the movies I thought people would frown at were their favorites as well! :-)

  39. Great choices!
    I've had Dog Soldiers recommended to me a few times - it's definitely on my want-to-watch list.

  40. Deniz:
    DOG SOLDIERS is a favorite of mine for the friendship between the soldiers, especially between the sergeant and his most trusted soldier -- and the dog survived!

  41. Ahhh!!! How to Train Your Dragon! Yes Hiccup is the best! I want one.

  42. Courtney:
    Yes, it would be great to have your very own Toothless, wouldn't it?

  43. capt america was a cutie, sorry, his blue eyes with blue pecks and shield...he was handsome. oh yeah, and the movie rocked too!!

  44. OMG! I totally forgot about "How to Train your Dragon" I can watch that movie over and over again. Great list. :3