PLATOON (1986)

A very violent, dark Vietnam movie written and directed by an actual Vietnam veteran, so I would say it’s high quality but your mileage may vary.

WEST SIDE STORY (1961)

About three-quarters of my favorite movie all-time, but not quite. Still sort of elemental to where musicals have gone since then.

ROCKY (1976)

A tiny boxing movie about a bunch of weirdos that became a massive cultural smash. I like some parts.

BUTCH CASSIDY AND THE SUNDANCE KID (1969)

This extremely affable western about a couple of outlaws on the run feels like the direct ancestor of your average Marvel movie.

JAWS (1975)

The original summer blockbuster is the best possible movie you could ever make about a shark eating people.

MODERN TIMES (1936)

The final appearance of Charlie Chaplin’s Tramp character somehow remains both funny and relevant.

SHANE (1953)

A (very) widescreen western about the consequences of violence, or something, which I would’ve enjoyed more if not for the super-whiny little kid.

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.