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Oldies But Goodies – The Best Family Movies of All Time
Great Movies & Great Times
Watching a moving and heartwarming story with friends and family can be one of the greatest experiences in the world. These oldies but goodies movies provide just such an experience. In the grand scheme of things, what else is there but laughing, crying and experiencing life together.
Quality Time with Those You Love
Everyone remembers the movies of their childhood, the oldies but goodies. Movies that made you think and that ended with the good guy on top. These days it's a little different sometimes.
Sure, there is no doubt that watching the latest and greatest, action packed, double-entendre filled, blockbuster movie at a theater is an outstanding experience. Yeah, it really is great, if you're fifteen and on a date. For the rest of us, a quiet night at house with the family and friends, watching one of the classics, is pretty outstanding too.
The night at home may well begin with calm. You sit on the couch in front of the TV with your wonderful spouse beside you. Docile children eagerly await the movie but the chocolate and the caffeine have already intruded. Rambunctious kids fill the night for a brief time but, finally, they settle down to watch the classic.
With these thoughts in mind, be sure, you've picked a good one. Here are five, oldies but goodies, that are timeless suggestions sure to please everyone in the house:
Don't forget the Snacks!
Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory
To be sure, we're not recommending that atrocity by Tim Burton. Instead, the antics of Gene Wilder are plenty scary for any toddler. In addition, the "blueberry girl" and the other winners including Charlie set just the right tone for greed and over indulgence. The Oompah Loompahs and Slugworth are fairly disconcerting too. This movie is unsettling on so many levels that it can be watched repeatedly. Still, nothing in the movie compares to the scene where Mr.Wilder's hand closes on the Gobstopper. This version is a must-see.
It's a Wonderful Life
It is the story of "everyman" and every man's story. The message that the value of love, happiness and family cannot be overstated could not be told any better. Capra got everything right from Jimmy Stewart's stuttering through Potter's innate sliminess to Clarence's ineptitude. It's a morality tale cloaked in a grand Christmas story that uplifts your spirits, then drags you down and, finally, leaves you with just a little bit more understanding. The title says it all.
The Wizard of Oz
It's the standard. What else is there to say? Judy Garland shines, the monkeys fly and those other three, the lion, the scarecrow and the tin man are undeniably iconic. The only thing that could make it better is a tune from Pink Floyd. The adults in the crowd will be content with the music and the undeniably non-child oriented references while the little ones can cringe in fear at the Wicked Witch, those crazy monkeys and the Wizard of Oz himself. Not to put too fine a point on it, but this is a pretty scary movie for anyone under forty-eight years old.
The Princess Bride
"I've forgotten to tell you one thing, I am writing this left handed." If you understand the reference, you understand the beauty if this remarkable movie. It stands on its own as a simple tale of dragons, adventures and, yes, "some kissing." Also, it is a wonderful tale of inspiration, tenacity and, yes, love. This movie is so wide ranging in its efforts that any two people can find some common ground over which to agree or laugh. Kudos to Mr. Goldman and "The Meathead."
The Bonus - The Absolute Best of the Best
At the risk of seeming indulgent, here is, without question, the all-time best, oldies but goodies, family movie. There are no reservations and no regrets on recommending this one.
Forget the inimitable mouse and the machinations of all the characters that surround him, no one steals the shoe from Jackie Gleason. At once pathetic and utterly endearing, there won't be dry eye in the house when they chase his beloved, mute janitor through the streets of Paris. I will not spoil it for any who have not seem it. It is no wonder that it was Mr. Gleason's favorite role. Woe to the person who tries to remake this classic.
Gigot - A Mute Janitor with a Heart of Gold - Jackie Gleason in his Favorite Role
If you've never seen it, you'll be amazed. No spoilers here. You simply must get it and watch it with those you love. Find it at Amazon. Maybe.