So The Better Half and I, for no reason other than it's getting cold out and we seek excuses not to leave the house, have decided to watch the AFI's 2007 Top 100 American Movies list, in reverse order. We watch a movie every Monday, and another one if the time allows. We also may add in some/all of the movies dropped from the 1998 list, if we get so inclined. Movies movies movies. Brief thoughts on each in this ever updating post...
#100 - Ben Hur: Boy howdy is this movie LONG. They could have knocked an hour off if they just cut all the character reaction shots in half. Lawd, lawd. It's stunningly beautiful, and that chariot race is deservedly awe-inspiring... That said, we were decidedly not prepared for Jesus Himself to appear periodically in the literal Deus Ex Machina role. Also, Charlton Heston repeatedly describing himself petulantly as a Jew is something to see. Glad we saw it, probably never watch it again.
#99 - Toy Story: How is this movie just as touching and vibrant 20+ years down the road? The detail, the script, the animation, the performances... everything about this movie works like gangbusters. Just a remarkable achievement. 10/10, will see again.
#98 - Yankee Doodle Dandy: Woof. No thank you please. Nearly half as long as Ben Hur, but felt longer. Stilted dialogue, boring direction, uber-patriotic at a time when such knee-jerk jingoism is as hard to stomach as ever. Can't decide how "funny" it wants to be. Songs are okay if you're into that kind of thing (melodically, anyway: the less said about the garbage lyrics, the better). This was a CHORE. Didn't like any of the characters, didn't understand the motivations of most, didn't care about the rest.
#97 - Blade Runner: Saw this once, years ago, left me so cold I felt certain that I just didn't get it. Watched it again this week, and...meh. Pretty as hell, interesting world-building, wants to be super deep and it really just isn't. Harrison Ford in the early 80s plays "man of action getting the crap kicked out of him before eventually triumphing over opponent" better than just about anyone ever. First nudity on the list, if that's a thing that interests you. Will watch 2049 sometime, now that I at least can remember the plot of the first movie... was okay. Not my favorite. Better than Yankee Doodle Dandy, shorter than Ben Hur, far less enjoyable than Toy Story.