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CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF After Brick Pollitt (Paul Newman) injures himself while drunkenly revisiting his high school sports-star days, he and his tempestuous wife, Maggie (Elizabeth Taylor), visit his family’s Mississippi plantation for the 65th birthday of his hot-tempered father, Big Daddy (Burl Ives). Cantankerous even with declining health, Big Daddy demands to know why Brick and Maggie haven’t yet given him a grandchild, unlike Brick’s brother Gooper (Jack Carson) and his fecund wife, Mae (Madeleine Sherwood). 1958 American drama film directed by Richard Brooks. It is based on the 1955 Pulitzer Prize-winning play of the same name by Tennessee Williams and adapted by Richard Brooks and James Poe. The film stars Elizabeth Taylor, Paul Newman, Burl Ives, Judith Anderson, Jack Carson and Madeline Sherwood.
CLEOPATRA 1963 epic historical drama film directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz, with a screenplay adapted by Mankiewicz, Ranald MacDougall and Sidney Buchman from the 1957 book The Life and Times of Cleopatra by Carlo Maria Franzero, and from histories by Plutarch, Suetonius, and Appian. It stars Elizabeth Taylor in the eponymous role. Richard Burton, Rex Harrison, Roddy McDowall, and Martin Landau are featured in supporting roles. It chronicles the struggles of Cleopatra, the young Queen of Egypt, to resist the imperial ambitions of Rome.
FIDDLER ON THE ROOF The film centers on Tevye, the father of five daughters, and his attempts to maintain his Jewish religious and cultural traditions as outside influences encroach upon the family’s lives. He must cope both with the strong-willed actions of his three older daughters, who wish to marry for love – each one’s choice of a husband moves further away from the customs of his faith – and with the edict of the Tsar who evicts the Jews from the town of Anatevka. 1971 epic musical comedy-drama film produced and directed by Norman Jewison. It is an adaptation of the 1964 Broadway musical of the same name, with music composed by Jerry Bock, lyrics by Sheldon Harnick, and screenplay by Joseph Stein based on stories by Sholem Aleichem. Starring Topol, Norma Crane, Leonard Frey, Molly Picon, and Paul Mann. Throughout the film, Tevye talks to God and directly to the audience, breaking the fourth wall. In these monologues, Tevye ponders tradition, the difficulties of being poor, the Jewish community’s constant fear of violence from their non-Jewish neighbours, and important family decisions. The film was released to critical acclaim and won three Academy Awards, including Best Music, Scoring Adaptation and Original Song Score for arranger-conductor John Williams.
INTOLERANCE 1916 epic silent film directed by D. W. Griffith. Subtitles include Love’s Struggle Throughout the Ages and A Sun-Play of the Ages. Regarded as one of the most influential films of the silent era (though it received mixed reviews at the time), the three-and-a-half-hour epic intercuts four parallel storylines, each separated by several centuries: a contemporary melodrama of crime and redemption,a Judean story: Christ’s mission and death, a French story: the events surrounding the St. Bartholomew’s Day massacre of 1572, and a Babylonian story: the fall of the Babylonian Empire to Persia in 539 BC. Each story had its own distinctive color tint in the original print, but not in the currently available versions. The scenes are linked by shots of a figure representing Eternal Motherhood, rocking a cradle.
MARTY This acclaimed romantic drama follows the life of Marty Piletti (Ernest Borgnine), a stout bachelor butcher who lives with his mother (Esther Minciotti) in the Bronx. Always unlucky in love, Marty reluctantly goes out to a ballroom one night and meets a nice teacher named Clara (Betsy Blair). Though Marty and Clara hit it off, his relatives discourage him from pursuing the relationship, and he must decide between his family’s approval or a shot at finding romance. 1955 American romantic drama film directed by Delbert Mann in his directorial debut. The screenplay was written by Paddy Chayefsky, expanding upon his 1953 teleplay of the same name, with Ernest Borgnine and Betsy Blair
MIDNIGHT COWBOY 1969 American buddy drama film, based on the 1965 novel of the same name by James Leo Herlihy. The film was written by Waldo Salt, directed by John Schlesinger, and stars Jon Voight and Dustin Hoffman, with notable smaller roles being filled by Sylvia Miles, John McGiver, Brenda Vaccaro, Bob Balaban, Jennifer Salt, and Barnard Hughes. Set in New York City, Midnight Cowboy depicts the unlikely friendship between two hustlers: naïve sex worker Joe Buck (Voight), and ailing con man “Ratso” Rizzo (Hoffman). At the 42nd Academy Awards, the film won three awards: Best Picture, Best Director and Best Adapted Screenplay. Midnight Cowboy is the only X-rated film ever to win Best Picture. It has since been placed 36th on the American Film Institute’s list of the 100 greatest American films of all time.
ONCE UPON A TIME IN THE WEST (Italian: C’era una volta il West, “Once upon a time (there was) the West”) There’s a single piece of land around Flagstone with water on it, and rail baron Morton (Gabriele Ferzetti) aims to have it, knowing the new railroad will have to stop there. He sends his henchman Frank (Henry Fonda) to scare the land’s owner, McBain (Frank Wolff), but Frank kills him instead and pins it on a known bandit, Cheyenne (Jason Robards). Meanwhile, a mysterious gunslinger with a score to settle (Charles Bronson) and McBain’s new wife, Jill (Claudia Cardinale), arrive in town. 1968 epic Spaghetti Western film directed by Sergio Leone, who co-wrote it with Sergio Donati based on a story by Dario Argento, Bernardo Bertolucci, and Leone. It stars Henry Fonda, cast against type, as the villain, Charles Bronson as his nemesis, Jason Robards as a bandit, and Claudia Cardinale as a newly widowed homesteader. The widescreen cinematography was by Tonino Delli Colli, and the acclaimed film score was by Ennio Morricone.
ON THE BEACH After World War III, Australia is the only remaining haven for mankind. However, wind currents carrying lingering radiation all but condemn those on the continent to the same fate suffered by the rest of the world. When the survivors receive a strange signal from San Diego, Cmdr. Dwight Towers (Gregory Peck) must undertake a mission with Lt. Peter Holmes (Anthony Perkins) to see if there is hope for humanity — leaving behind Moira (Ava Gardner) and Mary (Donna Anderson), the women they love. 1959 American post-apocalyptic science fiction drama film from United Artists, produced and directed by Stanley Kramer, that stars Gregory Peck, Ava Gardner, Fred Astaire, and Anthony Perkins. This black-and-white film is based on Nevil Shute’s 1957 novel of the same name depicting the aftermath of a nuclear war.
PAINT YOUR WAGON In this musical based on the Broadway show, Ben Rumson (Lee Marvin) happens upon a wrecked wagon containing a dead man and his surviving brother, Pardner (Clint Eastwood), in the wilds of California during the Gold Rush. At the burial, they discover gold dust and stake a claim. Soon a mining camp dubbed “No Name City” emerges, rife with lonely men starved for female companionship. When a polygamist Mormon arrives looking to sell off a wife (Jean Seberg), a bidding war commences. 1969 Western musical film starring Lee Marvin, Clint Eastwood, and Jean Seberg. The film was adapted by Paddy Chayefsky from the 1951 musical Paint Your Wagon by Lerner and Loewe. It is set in a mining camp in Gold Rush-era California. It was directed by Joshua Logan.
PSYCHO 1960 American psychological horror thriller film produced and directed by Alfred Hitchcock. The screenplay, written by Joseph Stefano, was based on the 1959 novel of the same name by Robert Bloch. The film stars Anthony Perkins, Janet Leigh, Vera Miles, John Gavin and Martin Balsam. The plot centers on an encounter between on-the-run embezzler Marion Crane (Leigh) and shy motel proprietor Norman Bates (Perkins) and its aftermath, in which a private investigator (Balsam), Marion’s lover Sam Loomis (Gavin) and her sister Lila (Miles) investigate the cause of her disappearance.
THE PUBLIC ENEMY – A 1931 all-talking pre-Code gangster film produced and distributed by Warner Bros. The film was directed by William A. Wellman and stars James Cagney, Jean Harlow, Edward Woods, Donald Cook and Joan Blondell. The film relates the story of a young man’s rise in the criminal underworld in prohibition-era urban America.
SINGIN’ IN THE RAIN A spoof of the turmoil that afflicted the movie industry in the late 1920s when movies went from silent to sound. When two silent movie stars’, Don Lockwood and Lina Lamont, latest movie is made into a musical a chorus girl is brought in to dub Lina’s speaking and singing. Don is on top of the world until Lina finds out. 1952 American musical romantic comedy film directed and choreographed by Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen, starring Kelly, Donald O’Connor, and Debbie Reynolds and featuring Jean Hagen, Millard Mitchell and Cyd Charisse. It offers a lighthearted depiction of Hollywood in the late 1920s, with the three stars portraying performers caught up in the transition from silent films to “talkies”. In 1989, Singin’ in the Rain was one of the first 25 films selected by the United States Library of Congress for preservation in the National Film Registry for being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”. In 2005 the British Film Institute included it in its list of the 50 films to be seen by the age of 14. In 2008, Empire magazine ranked it as the eighth-best film of all time. In Sight & Sound magazine’s 2012 list of the 50 greatest films of all time, Singin’ in the Rain placed 20th
SOME LIKE IT HOT 1959 American black-and-white romantic comedy film directed and produced by Billy Wilder, starring Marilyn Monroe, Tony Curtis, and Jack Lemmon. The supporting cast includes George Raft, Pat O’Brien, Joe E. Brown, Joan Shawlee, Grace Lee Whitney, and Nehemiah Persoff. The screenplay by Wilder and I. A. L. Diamond is based on a screenplay by Robert Thoeren and Michael Logan from the 1935 French film Fanfare of Love. The film is about two musicians who dress in drag in order to escape from mafia gangsters whom they witnessed committing a crime (inspired by the Saint Valentine’s Day Massacre).
THE SOUTHERNER is a 1945 American drama film directed by Jean Renoir and based on the 1941 novel Hold Autumn in Your Hand by George Sessions Perry. In this rural drama, Sam Tucker (Zachary Scott) is a Texan cotton picker who aspires to run his own farm and create a better life for his family, which includes two kids and the irritable Granny Tucker (Beulah Bondi). Aided by his beautiful wife, Nona (Betty Field), Tucker begins to work a neglected plot of land, but numerous difficulties arise, including bad weather and conflicts with jealous neighbors, making it hard for the Tuckers to get ahead.
THE STRANGER 1946 American film noir starring Edward G. Robinson, Loretta Young, and Orson Welles. Welles’s third completed feature film as director and his first film noir is about a war crimes investigator tracking a high-ranking Nazi fugitive to a Connecticut town. It is the first Hollywood film to present documentary footage of the Holocaust.
TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD Scout Finch (Mary Badham), 6,and her older brother, Jem (Phillip Alford), live in sleepy Maycomb, Ala., spending much of their time with their friend Dill (John Megna) and spying on their reclusive and mysterious neighbor, Boo Radley (Robert Duvall). When Atticus (Gregory Peck), their widowed father and a respected lawyer, defends a black man named Tom Robinson (Brock Peters) against fabricated rape charges, the trial and tangent events expose the children to evils of racism and stereotyping. 1962 American drama film directed by Robert Mulligan. The screenplay by Horton Foote is based on Harper Lee’s 1960 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name. It stars Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch and Mary Badham as Scout. To Kill a Mockingbird marked the film debuts of Robert Duvall, William Windom, and Alice Ghostley.
WHITE CHRISTMAS is a 1954 American musical film directed by Michael Curtiz and starring Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye, Rosemary Clooney, and Vera-Ellen. Filmed in Technicolor, it features the songs of Irving Berlin, including a new version of the title song, “White Christmas”. Singers Bob Wallace (Bing Crosby) and Phil Davis (Danny Kaye) join sister act Betty (Rosemary Clooney) and Judy Haynes (Vera-Ellen) to perform a Christmas show in rural Vermont. There, they run into Gen. Waverly (Dean Jagger), the boys’ commander in World War II, who, they learn, is having financial difficulties; his quaint country inn is failing. So what’s the foursome to do but plan a yuletide miracle: a fun-filled musical extravaganza that’s sure to put Waverly and his business in the black!
THE WIZARD OF OZ When a tornado rips through Kansas, Dorothy (Judy Garland) and her dog, Toto, are whisked away in their house to the magical land of Oz. They follow the Yellow Brick Road toward the Emerald City to meet the Wizard, and en route they meet a Scarecrow (Ray Bolger) that needs a brain, a Tin Man (Jack Haley) missing a heart, and a Cowardly Lion (Bert Lahr) who wants courage. The wizard asks the group to bring him the broom of the Wicked Witch of the West (Margaret Hamilton) to earn his help. 1939 American musical fantasy film produced by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Often seen as one of the greatest films of all time, it is the most commercially successful adaptation of L. Frank Baum’s 1900 children’s fantasy novel The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Directed primarily by Victor Fleming (who left the production to take over the troubled Gone with the Wind), the film stars Judy Garland as Dorothy Gale alongside Ray Bolger, Jack Haley, Bert Lahr and Margaret Hamilton. Characterized by its use of Technicolor, fantasy storytelling, musical score, and memorable characters, the film has become an American pop culture icon.