Showing posts from June, 2011

The Incredibles (2004)

The Incredibles
Disney, 2004

Principal Cast:  Craig T. Nelson, Holly Hunter, Samuel L. Jackson, Jason Lee
Director:  Brad Bird
Producers:  John Lasseter, Kori Rae, Katherine Sarafian, John Walker
Screenwriter:  Brad Bird
Cinematography:  Andrew Jiminez, Patrick Lin, Janet Lucroy

After falling out of favor with the public, the government forces all superheroes to give up their secret identities and stop their crime-fighting ways.  Bob Parr, once known as Mr. Incredible, struggles to live an everyday, mundane life as an insurance adjuster.  Parr, as well as his wife and children, are all blessed with superhuman powers, which he feels should be celebrated and not hidden.  When a mysterious stranger needs the help of "Mr. Incredible," Bob jumps at the chance, behind his wife, Helen's, back.  But when Bob is captured by the super-villain Syndrome, it's up to Helen and the kids to save him.

Awards & Nominations
Academy Awards
Best Animated Feature Film of the Year - Winner

25 Greatest Summer Blockbusters

We are in the middle of the summer blockbuster season, and we've already seen some major releases thus far such as Thor, Super 8 and X-Men: First Class.  We here at The Essential Films LOVE summer blockbusters, and we are going to countdown the Top 25 Greatest Summer Blockbusters.

Criteria:  The film must have been released between the dates of May 1 and August 31 and have grossed at least $100 million in worldwide box office receipts as well.

#25 - Independence Day

Director:  Roland Emmerich
Stars:  Will Smith, Bill Pullman, Jeff Goldblum
Release Date: July 3, 1996
Worldwide Box Office:  $817,400,891

#24 - Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl

Director: Gore Verbinski
Stars:  Johnny Depp, Geoffrey Rush, Orlando Bloom
Release Date: July 9, 2003
Worldwide Box Office:  $652,100,000

#23 - Gladiator

Director: Ridley Scott
Stars:  Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix, Connie Nielsen
Release Date:  May 5, 2000
Worldwide Box Office:  $456,200,000

#22 - Men In Black

Director:  Barry Sonnenfiel…

Harold and Maude (1971)

Harold and Maude Paramount, 1971

Principal Cast:  Ruth Gordon, Bud Cort, Vivian Pickles Director:  Hal Ashby Producers:  Colin Higgins, Mildred Lewis, Charles Mulvehill Screenwriter:  Colin Higgins Cinematography:  John Alonzo

Harold is a wealthy, death-obsessed teenager who finds it hard to connect with anyone, especially his overbearing mother.  He spends his free time visiting junkyards, simulating suicides and attending funerals for strangers.  It's at one of these funerals that he meets Maude, an 80-year old woman who is full of life and eccentricity.  Harold and Maude get into a series of quirky adventures which leads this unusual friendship to develop into an unconventional romance.

Awards and Nominations
American Film Institute
#45 of the 100 Greatest Comedies#69 of the 100 Greatest Romances#89 of the 100 Most Inspiring Films#9 of the Top 10 Romantic ComediesNational Film Preservation Board
Selected in 1997 as a culturally significant film to the National Film Registry.

"A lot of…

Goodbye, Mr. Chips (1939)

Principal Cast:  Robert Donat, Greer Garson, Terry Kilburn, John Mills, Paul Henreid Director:  Sam Wood Producer:  Victor Saville Screenwriters:  R.C. Sherriff, Claudine West, Eric Maschwitz Cinematography:  F.A. Young
Awards & Nominations: Academy Awards Best Actor in a Leading Role - Robert Donat
Academy Award Nominations Best Picture Best Actress in a Leading Role - Greer Garson Best Director - Sam Wood Best Writing, Screenplay - R.C. Sherriff, Claudine West, Eric Maschwitz Best Editing  Best Sound Recording
American Film Institute #41 on the 100 Years... 100 Heroes & Villains (Arthur Chipping in the "Heroes" category)
Cannes Film Festival Golden Palm Nominee
Arthur Chipping, or "Mr. Chips," a classics teacher, remembers his long teaching career at the Brookfield Boarding School for boys.  It starts with him as a young man in late 19th Century England and follows his career throughout his entire life.  At first, Chips is stuffy, old-fashioned an…