THE BRIDGE ON THE RIVER KWAI (1957)

A famous war drama that is actually about something more interesting, told on a grand scale by David Lean and bunch of great actors.

THE AFRICAN QUEEN (1951)

I still think this enjoyable adventure story holds up, though the story of its shooting in the Congo (including possible accidental cannibalism) is now at least as famous as the movie itself.

THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS (1991)

Describing the plot of this movie, where one serial killer helps a trainee FBI agent catch another, does not do justice to how spectacularly well made and acted it is.

INTOLERANCE (1916)

Maybe the first big blockbuster, somehow still leaving viewers flabbergasted a century later. Also one long missive about “cancel culture,,” basically.

YANKEE DOODLE DANDY (1942)

This “jukebox musical” of patriotic Broadway hits showcases James Cagney’s powerhouse performance, but that’s basically the only part of the movie that works for me.

PULP FICTION (1994)

Even if you have not watched it over and over, the people who made the movies you have, have.

EASY RIDER (1969)

Bikers, the open road, freedom, so many drugs. Who needs any story whatsoever? Well…

SULLIVAN’S TRAVELS (1941)

One of the best remembered comedies of the great Preston Sturges, about a director who is tired of making comedies.

12 ANGRY MEN (1957)

Perhaps the greatest of all “talky dramas,” beloved despite (or because of?) taking place almost entirely in one room.