Friday, August 3, 2012

Whose List?

There have been several lists over the years purporting to state exactly which films are the "greatest of all time" by various groups and organizations.

Some films routinely appear at the top of most lists, and the exact order can change from group to group, depending on who is doing the listing.  This time, it is The British Film Institute's Sight and Sound magazine which polled over 800 distributors, critics, and academics, and they came up with Hitchcock's Vertigo as the current top of their list, ousting Citizen Kane from the position it has held for 50 years.

Well, i don't know about others, but i think each person has his or her own list of the greatest films, and sometimes it doesn't coincide with anything the experts say.

In my case, i think the best film ever is Walt Disney's Cinderella.

Yes, really, and stop laughing.

When i was in college, back when we were still just getting used to having Beta tapes in most homes, so that tells you how long ago it was, Cinderella was re-released to theaters, and not only did i go see it, i stood in the rain to get my ticket, watched, and went out and stood in the rain again for over an hour so i could buy another ticket and watch it again.

What in the world is it about such a film that i love it that much?  It is admittedly not in nearly as much favor now, with the attitude being that no princess worth the title waits around for a prince to come rescue her.  Many despise the old fairy tales for just that reason, seeing it as sexist or demeaning.

Well, i love the music.  The fun she has with the birds and mice who are her friends.  The fun the mice have planning a surprise for her.  Her joy at the dance, twirling and being so carefree for a while, so different from her everyday reality.  The way right triumphs at the end, and the "bad guys" in the form of three nasty people end up losing their whipping girl.  Most of the film is light and happy and full of the spirit of a person who just won't quit dreaming, even when it seems there is little possibility of the dreams coming true.

This movie, more than anything other than being in Walt Disney World itself, makes me think, for just a little while, that fairy tales are real and dreams do come true.

Cinderella will never make any serious critic's top anything list, most likely, but it is my favorite nonetheless, and when reality gets me down, it's a pleasant way to pass a little while rekindling dreams.

Besides, Jacques is just too cute for words.

Anyone else want to chime in with the movie that tops your list?

Today is

Armed Forces Day -- Equatorial Guinea

Boom Days -- Leadville, CO, US (celebrate the mining heritage of the Rockies with a parade and even a celebrity pack burro race; through Sunday)

Braham Pie Day -- Braham, MN, US (a home-made pie festival)

Canada's National Ukrainian Festival -- Dauphin, MB, Canada (through Sunday; experience the richness of Ukrainian culture)

Colonization Martyr's Day -- Guinea-Bissau (Anniversary of the Killing of Pidjiguiti)

Czech Festival -- Wilber, NE, US (to promote the preservation of Czech culture, sponsored by the Nebraska Czechs of Wilber; through Sunday)

Dia de la Bandera -- Venezuela (Flag Day)

Edinburgh Festival Fringe -- Edinburgh, Scotland (through the 27th; the largest art gathering in the world)

Fairy Washing Festival -- Fairy Calendar (do the fairies wash themselves, or is everyone supposed to wash his/her fairy?)

Feast of Caligo, the mother of Chaos -- Ancient Greek Calendar (date approximate, and this is as good a day to celebrate chaos as any other)

Fiesta de San Salvador -- San Salvador, El Salvador

Gigglefeet Dance Festival -- Ketchikan, AK, US (today and Sunday, celebrating dance in the community and part of the Blueberry Arts Festival)

Giope de la Libertad -- Equatorial Guinea (Freedom Day)

Grab Some Nuts Day -- almonds and walnuts are especially good for you

Independence Day -- Niger(1960)

Ishitori Festival -- Kasuga Shrine, Kuwana City, Japan (through tomorrow, called the loudest festival in Japan)

Lollapalooza -- Grant Park, Chicago, IL, US (through the 5th)

Musikfest -- Bethlehem, PA, US (10 days, 15 stages, over 500 musical performances, so there is something here for everyone!)

National Watermelon Day

Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo -- Edinburgh Castle, Edinburgh, Scotland (display of military color an pageantry; through the 27th)

Satchmo Summerfest -- New Orleans, LA, US (through Sunday)

Somers Day -- Bermuda

St. Lydia Purpuraria's Day (Lydia the "seller of purple" who was Paul's first convert in Philippi; Patron of dyers)

St. Nicodemus' Day (member of the Sanhedrin and secret disciple who helped bury Jesus)

Twins Day Festival -- Twinsburg, OH, US (no, you aren't seeing double, it's a celebration of multiples; through Sunday)

Turku Music Festival -- Turku, Finland (music from medieval to modern, by world-famous artists in the historic venues of Finland's oldest city; through the 18th)

White Oak Rendezvous -- Deer River, MN, US (reliving the history of a North West Company Fur Post from 1798 and an accompanying Ojibwe Native Village from the same time period; through Sunday)

Birthdays Today:

Jay North, 1951
John Landis, 1950
Martha Stewart, 1941
Martin Sheen, 1940
Tony Bennett, 1926
Leon Uris, 1924
John T. Scopes, 1900
Ernie Pyle, 1900
Elisha Graves Otis, 1811

Today in History:

Tiberius, Roman Empire general, defeats the Dalmatians at the river Bathinus, 8
Columbus sets Sail for the "Indes",departing from Palos, Spain, 1492
John Rut, at St. John's, Newfoundland, sends the first known letter from North America, 1527
Robert LaSalle builds the Le Griffon, the first known ship built on the Great Lakes, 1678
First ascent of Jungfrau, third highest summit in the Bernese Alps, 1811
Harvard defeats Yale in the first intercollegiate rowing race, 1852*
Second Maori War begins in New Zealand, 1860
The Firestone Tire & Rubber Company is founded, 1900
The nuclear submarine USS Nautilus travels beneath the Arctic ice cap, 1958
President Maaouya Ould Sid'Ahmed Taya of Mauritania is overthrown in a military coup while attending the funeral of King Fahd in Saudi Arabia, 2005

*In fact, it was the first American intercollegiate athletic event ever.


  1. I can't remember the title, it's the one where this person raise's these ducks and fly's along w ith them as they migrate

  2. Well my daughter would agree that Cinderella should be at the top of any list--she makes me watch it all the time.

    Though she enjoys Disney's Tangled very much as well.

    My pick? I forgot what movies are (other than Disney and Pixar).

  3. John, i've heard of that one, but never seen it, it must be interesting.

    Slamdunk, i didn't get to watch much besides their movies, either, as the kids were growing up.

  4. How to pick?

    My Dinner with Andre
    Annie Hall
    Double Indemnity
    The Americanization of Emily
    Dear Heart--with Glenn Ford and Geraldine Brooks

    I like dialogue-heavy movies :)