~~ Paul's List of Seemingly Unlimited Repeats ~~
To make this short list, a film need not be "Great" in the artistic sense, cutting new cinematic trails. It must be great only in its ability to entertain.
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TRIGGER HAPPY Jeff Glodblum, Richard Dreyfuss, Ellen Barkin
(1996) Dreyfuss produced this charming film about an insane gangster (Dreyfuss) who is sprung from the nuthouse to regain his underworld empire. Goldblum is the perfect hired gun, whose loyalty is always questioned. Barkin is terrific as the hot tomato who has it for Goldblum. Each one-on-one rub-out is orchestrated like a fancy business meeting. Cameos by Diane Lane, Burt Reynolds and Greg Hines.
I have seen this movie 4 times.
THE IN-LAWS Peter Falk, Alan Arkin
(1979) Falk plays a CIA agent (maybe) and Arkin a dentist, about to become related by virtue of the marraige of their offspring. Falk seems to tell fantastic tales, and ultimately coerces Arkin into a series of unwilling adventures which pile laugh upon laugh.
I have seen this movie at least 5 times.
START THE REVOLUTION WITHOUT ME Donald Sutherland, Gene Wilder
(1972) These two play double roles as twin brothers mixed up on the day of their birth. One is royal, the other common, but since one of
each is displaced, they are raised in separate cultures. All of this at
the start of the French Revolution. The two raised by the Count D'Asissi
are the Corsican Brothers, the most famous swordsmen in the world. The
pair raised by the farmer are afraid of their own shadows.
What would happen if King Louie 16 called the Corsican Brothers
to Paris, disguised as peasants, to protect him from the revolutionaries, while, at the same time, the two peasants escape to Paris to avoid being recruited by the revolutionaries? An incredible series of mistaken identities!
Perhaps the funniest movie ever made.
EVITA Madonna, Antonio Banderas
(1998) What perfect casting: the girl from the wrong side of the tracks who will do anything to succeed, portrays an Argentine girl from the wrong side of the tracks who will do anything to succeed. Banderas plays the perfect "Everyman", with multiple parts as waiter, bartender, soldier, news reporter, etc. while Jonathan Pryce is the perfect Juan Peron. Although this is an opera, only Madonna can sing well, yet the film works! For this movie as in the stage play, the actual history of Eva Duarte is compressed and re-arranged a bit, but, fortunately, this is not the rampant historical revisionism so common to Hollywood.
Musical score by Andrew Lloyd Webber. Winner of the Golden Globe Award for Best Picture and Best Actress.
Seen this 4 times. Music gets better each time I see it.
FARGO Frances McDormand, great supporting cast.
(1997) McDormand is perfect as a slightly peculiar Chief of a small town dufus police force, in Minnesota. In fact, the film was written specifically for her, and earned her the Academy Award for Best Actress. This dark comedy blends horror and a unique form of humor as a series of fatal events strike the small town during a typical severe winter.
Seen 3 times.
THE GAME Michael Douglas, Sean Penn
(1998) Exceptionally interesting film. After seeing it 4 times within a year, I can state that the plot, though unusual, is seamless: all of this Could happen. Douglas is a bored and very wealthy man who is given, by brother Sean Penn, a birthday gift of "The Game" for the purpose of jump-starting his life. "The Game" is always nebulous as to the start, the finish, or even the rules, and when Douglas engages, he seems trapped in an ever spiralling series of terror filled situations.
I am delighted by this fim each time I view it, which is maybe 6 times.
HIGH ROAD TO CHINA Tom Selleck, Bess Armstrong
(1983) Great scenery and music; Selleck plays a lush
freelance pilot, Armstrong a wealthy debutante in search of her adventuring father, circa 1935. A two hour film, it goes by quickly. The formula is now common: a rascally male and a female with an opposite social chemistry are thrown together in some desperate situation, and love flowers. In this case, the formula works perfectly as the stormy romance develops slowly on the background of depression scarred Europe, East Asia, and China. Wonderful images of a 1930's open cockpit airplane in the sky over Asia.
I have seen this film 6 times.
THE LAST OF THE MOHICANS Daniel Day-Lewis
(1992) An epic period piece. This is our country's early history, with the English and French at war in America, and the Indians recruited to both sides. Wonderfully recreated to capture the look and flavor of the early 18th Century in America. Not entirely faithful to Cooper's original tale, but the Hollywood re-write works well.
Last line in film: "...For I, Chingackgook, am ... the last of the Mohicans." Seen 5 times.
ROMANCING THE STONE Michael Douglas, Kathleen Turner
(1992) Turner plays a famous author of women's romance/adventure novels suddenly immersed in the climates of her books, with Douglas playing the fortune seeker and adventurer her heroines pine for. Romance, action, suspense, and comedy in this clever rework of a common plot line.
I have viewed this movie 5 times.
THE THREE MUSKETEERS Oliver Reed, Michael York, Richard Chamberlain
(1973) A wonderful cast rounds out this simply great swashbuckler. Also stars Charlton Heston as Richelieu and beauties Rachel Welch and Faye Dunaway. The makers were so sure this adventure tale with comedic elements would be a hit that they made the sequel (The Four Musketeers) AT THE SAME TIME! Great fun. Seen 4 times.
WHEN HARRY MET SALLY Billy Crystal, Meg Ryan
(1989) The quintissential romatic comedy. Here are two people of seemingly opposite sexual chemistry who nevertheless share the most intimate details of their private lives simply because he agreed to drop her off at home during a college vacation.
I have seen this movie at least 5 times.
THE PRINCESS BRIDE Cary Elwes, Robin Wright, Mandy Patinkin
(1987) The two main stars never made another movie, but this is a film classic. It is a Fairy Tale, with action, comedy, love, pirates, villains, strange creatures, giants, and magic, all rated G. Devoted viewers have memorized many of the special lines, including: "Inconceivable!", "As you wish", "Iocane! I'd stake my life on it!", and "Hello. My name is Inogo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die." Cameos by Peter Falk and Billy Crystal.
I have seen this movie 5 times.
THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE UGLY
Clint Eastwood, Eli Wallach, Lee Van Cleef
(1971) Lots of twists and turns in this best of all spagetti westerns as the three seek to take sole claim of a large pile of buried gold. But, where is it? - and what alliances among the three must be formed (and broken) in order to arrive at the prize?
Seen 5 times at least.