This post is written as part of the 5 Movies on an Island Blogathon hosted by Classic Film and TV Cafe.
Everyone has the movies they could kick back and live off of for the rest of their life. Whether it’s the films you watch when you’re sick, or the ones you’d save in a fire, you can tell a lot about a person based on the films they could indulge in forever. In honor of National Classic Movie Day I’ve joined in this week’s blogathon to look at the films I’ve take on a desert island with me – barring I also had electricity for my HD Blu-ray player. And, because it’s classic movie day I’ll keep my list to strictly pre-1980 titles.Feel free to share your desert island films in the comments!
If you’ve read my site for any length of time, then at least three of these films won’t be a surprise to you; the first film is Singin’ in the Rain (1952). Now, considering I’ll be a desert island, it’s doubtful a lot of rain will be headed my way, so I’ll have to live vicariously through Gene Kelly. This Hollywood gem presents the funniest performances of all time, and there’s never a bad time to watch!
This list wouldn’t be from me without Meet Me in St. Louis (1944). If I have to live on a desert island I need to be able to watch the deliriously darling Margaret O’Brien as Tootie, I need to be able to watch the “Under the Bamboo Tree” sequence, since there won’t be any other inhabitants on said island (I hope!) I can sing as loud as I want. Can you imagine the joys of singing “The Trolley Song” at the top of your lungs? I can’t wait. Meet Me in St. Louis makes me laugh and cry, the perfect accompaniment for when I’m feeling lonely or happy.
My mother would tell you watching this for a lifetime would drive her into an early grave, but I can never get enough of Anne of the Thousand Days (1969). To me, this is the film that left me adoring classic films as well as indulging my life-long adoration for the Tudors. There’s never a time when I rewatch this and not notice something new. The clothes, the locations, the acting, everything is just perfect!
Okay, come on, if I’m on a desert island I got plenty of time to practice my swimming! Dangerous When Wet (1953) is my favorite Esther Williams film. It’s got a song on par with the music in Meet Me in St. Louis with “I Got Out of Bed on the Right Side” and the aquatic acrobatics with Tom and Jerry are pure Hollywood fun! Though it’s doubtful I could ever be as fantastic as Esther in the swimming department, I’d be able to better memorize her moves!
Okay, so almost all the films on here are musicals, but there’s no better musical than The Red Shoes (1948). Powell and Pressburger’s sumptuous ode to the obsession of talent looks utterly exquisite. I’d definitely want to be surrounded by beauty and there’s no film more beautiful than this one. Also, like with Dangerous When Wet, I’d be able to rewatch it and learn some new dance moves.
A freelance film critic whose work fuels the Rotten Tomatoes meter. I've been published on The Hollywood Reporter, Remezcla, and The Daily Beast. I've been featured in the L.A. Times. I currently run two podcasts, Citizen Dame and Ticklish Business.