Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Rom Coms

1. Annie Hall
2. The Graduate
3. Ball of Fire
4. Roman Holiday
5. His Girl Friday
6. Knocked Up
7. The Apartment
8. It Happened One Night
9. Chasing Amy
10. The Palm Beach Story

HM (alphabetical): 10 Things I Hate About You, (500) Days of Summer, Adventureland, Bringing Up Baby, The Goodbye Girl, Harold and Maude, Moonstruck, The Philadelphia Story, Punch-Drunk Love, There's Something About Mary

Movies I love, but don't quite fit our critera: Amelie, Arsenic and Old Lace, Being There, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Groundhog Day, High Fidelity, Lars and the Real Girl, L'Atalante, Love and Death, Monsieur Beaucaire, Rushmore, Singin' In the Rain, Some Like It Hot, Unfaithfully Yours, WALL-E

Commentary: I used IMDb to help me sort through which films were strictly romantic comedies. If the website had a particular film listed as nothing but a "comedy," "romance," and "drama," then that film made the cut. More specifically, a film like Some Like It Hot, which seemed like an obvious rom com to me, was only tagged as a comedy, so that's why it's among the group of films below the honorable mentions. Additionally, one of Amelie's tags was fantasy, and High Fidelity didn't have a romance tag.

The reason why I have Annie Hall and The Graduate listed above great classics like Ball of Fire and Roman Holiday is because I've had a longer relationship with those two contemporary films. However, Ball of Fire and Roman Holiday are quickly becoming big favorites of mine.

I've discussed Annie Hall on my blog before and maintain that I don't care how popular it is or how much it's regarded as Woody's best film. Like Jeff, I'm a big fan of what Adrienne wrote about "what makes a good romantic comedy." With that in mind, Annie Hall is the quintessential choice; I'll always love it for its honesty and sincerity. It tackles love from many different angles and it's one of the funniest movies I've ever seen. Similarly, I find The Gradute to be a comical meditation on love and life; it's one of my all-time favorite films.

One of the reasons why I told Brandon we should make romantic comedy top tens is because I was watching Roman Holiday when he asked me. Many contemporary films have taken the plot structure from William Wyler's film, only now it is completely bastardized. I absolutely love Roman Holiday for it's ending. SPOILERS. Gregory Peck is never caught in his lie to Audrey Hepburn, he makes the choice not to write a story on Hepburn's character because he's in love with her. Additionally, Peck and Hepburn don't end up together in the end. It's a brutally realistic ending with a great shot of Peck walking out of the room and staring back, hoping for one last look of Hepburn. Brilliant stuff.

Knocked Up is Judd Apatow's finest work to date, and hopefully he can find that magic again. I grew up with Chasing Amy, and likewise, it's Kevin Smith's best work, though the odds of him writing something like that again are pretty much impossible.

10 Things I Hate About You was something we used to watch a lot when we were kids. I'm a big fan of Heath Ledger's character in the film, and I do like the moment when he sings, "You're Just Too Good To Be True" from the stadium stands.

I want to be able to put Punch-Drunk Love in my top ten, but I'd have to watch it again before doing so. I've only seen it once, though I've seen certain scenes multiple times. When I did watch it for the first time, I was young and didn't understand the genius that is Paul Thomas Anderson. I certainly didn't hate it, but I wasn't too impressed with it. I want to give it another shot soon.

Are the two Hal Ashby films (Harold and Maude and Being There) overrated or underrated? I honestly don't care too much, and I do enjoy both.

Lastly, I could've added multiple Woody Allen movies to my top ten list; there are plenty that I love so much more than the last few films on my list. I chose to go with one of his films instead to allow more variety.

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