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Which films can you watch again and again?

Cameo-Screen1.jpgI used to be a big DVD buyer. Any film I really liked would be bought and any film I just liked that was packed with extras would fall on my buying list too. That meant I ended up with a huge collection of DVD's and a distinct lack of time to watch them, and nowadays with Filmstalker being here it's even harder to watch them.

Yet even though I have all these DVD's, whenever I sit down with some time to watch something I find I return to the same films, time and time again. It's a very odd list too, and one that changes only occasionally when a new DVD is added that really makes a connection.

Now let's make a distinction here I'm not talking about my favourite movies, although to be fair these are in my favourite movie list. I mean the films you can, and have, happily watched again and again and make you feel the same great feelings every time.

So what movies do you quite happily return to again and again?

For me those films are:

Always - This film means a lot to me and more to do with the time and the people I watched it with. Not being a happy bunny at the time it really touched me and stayed with me. It's beautifully shot and acted with Richard Dreyfuss, Holly Hunter, John Goodman and the amazing appearance by Audrey Hepburn playing God.

Field of Dreams - Undoubtedly this film is a hit with dreamers and sons. If you're a person that dreams of doing something better then this film can often hit a chord with you. However if you're a male the chances are that this film hits home, portraying as it does the estranged relationship between a son and his father and their last chance together. Yup I'll be howling like a baby every time, Big Fish does the same, but I always return to this film.

Run Lola Run - I can't believe that watching this film still grabs me so much each time I watch it. Innovative storytelling at it's very best.

Predator - I've watched this so many times that I can recite the lines as Arnie dishes them out. It's a classic tale of ultimate warriors fighting for survival. It's a definitive action movie with so a huge helping of buddies in combat, and it's starring Arnie with a quip laden script, "If it bleeds we can kill it.". What more could you want?

The Princess Bride - Like Predator, I'll happily spout lines from this film come rain or shine. This is undoubtedly the best romantic, action, adventure type movies of its kind. There's so much fun to be had watching it and revelling in those fantastic moments such as "Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die..." How can you not? This film has it all.

Airplane - I cannot go by a single week without having uttered at least one line from this film. I just can't help it, especially when someone asks me "both together?" in a supermarket queue...of course you have to have the right comedy double for that (Stu?). Or the other classic is "so tell me what's been happening?". You can see why the people at my work hate me so! This film is just packed with laughter and marks the peak of the Zuckers comedy output.

So what films do it for you? Which are making a repeated play in your film watching equipment, which could you watch again and again and probably have seen hundreds already? What makes them so special and why?



Atta boy Rich! Love your new feature.

1. Tremors - When I dont feel very good and I need some inspiration, watching Kevin Bacon and Fred Ward always pumps me back up, I think I've seen this film 5 times this year already. GRABOIDS!

2. Moonstruck - When I watch this film, it always feels like the first time. I love the way Cher's Italian-American family rallied around her in one of the films pivotal scenes. Not to mention the cheesy lines from Nicholas Cage, "I love you, not like they told you love is, and I didn't know this either, but love don't make things nice - it ruins everything. It breaks your heart. It makes things a mess. We aren't here to make things perfect. The snowflakes are perfect. The stars are perfect. Not us. Not us! We are here to ruin ourselves and to break our hearts and love the wrong people and die."

3. The Shadow - What I can never understand is why not so many people founnd this film to be so entertaining. Because I do and the others I have FORCED to watch it. Hehehe I like the idea of mind manipulation, and that world conquering premise set in the 30's America and I thought the acting was superb.

4. Pretty in Pink - Those Brat Pack days. Well, I was from this generation and this is my favorite movie of that time. I liked the way Duckie had a long time crush on Andie, but Andie's in love with Blane. "Blane? Is that his name? That's a department store, that's not a name!"

5. Top Gun - Gorgeous men playing beach volleyball? Fighter planes? Dog fights? Tom Cruise and that grin, you're a fool not to watch it over and over again. I feel the need, the need for speed!"

Special mention to "When Harry Met Sally", "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade", and "Identity".

tremors - it's kevin bacon. you would never ever forget when he said WHAT THE HEYL IS GOIN ON? I MEAN WHAT THE HEYL IS GOIN ON!!!!!

phantom of the opera - there's something in the music of the night that makes me watch it all the time

starwars - because it's starwars

The Princess Bride is on my list as well. "I'm not left handed either!" This film always cheers me up.

Goodfellas - My favourite mob film. Robert DeNiro, Ray Liotta, Joe Pesci and Martin Scorsese. I'll admit to liking a bit of violence in films, Richard you'll vouch for that. But this has so much more. This is probably my most quoted film.

And The Shawshank Redemption. We could be here all day if I go into that one.

LOL @ SHRLYN. Youre absolutely right about that scene. Valentine always makes me smile.

This is great stuff. It also happens to me, specially in books, I buy a lot of new ones, but I always keep reading the same again and again. And the same goes to movies. These are my special ones:

1. Conan the Barbarian It´s a fantastic, almost silent movie. If someone can explain you things with the only power of pictures, it´s John Milius. I still dream about Conan King with Arnie back where he belongs.

2. Falling Down This is a very personal. I saw this after an exam in the University which I knew I had failed. This movie was an echo of my feelings, but it did amazingly to relieve me. Every summer I take a look at this amazing portrait of urban life madness.

3. Seven I love cities. Certainly I do, I would die in a small town. Even so, I can detect its failures as a community. This movie is not a detective story, neither it is a psycho one. It´s a superbly filmed description of our flaws.

4. Empire of the Sun Spielberg is usually excellent, but this movie, hatred when released, pleased me a lot in the cinema, and still does. I have watched it infinite times, and it´s so moving I can cry. I feel so identified with Jim.

5. Spartacus I don´t go to the cinema to watch the daily, routinary things. I don´t wanna see life, but something better than life. Romans have been always my favourite guys in history, and this movie is so perfect. The best cast ever, the best tallents ever gathered for a feature. Since the very opening credits, I feel tremendous waves of pleasure and excitement with this, which is also my favourite movie, all time.

6. Hunchback of NotreDame There was a day in which 2D animation ruled the world. The Disney crew outdid ourselves with this very complex, unusally dark, masterfully done story of unrequited love, based on Victor Hugo masterpiece novel. The songs are simply outstanding. You can cath me singing them in the streets from time to time. It´s one of the touristic attractions of the place I live.

(The previous post was a bad draft. It could be deleted, I pushed post too soon.)

the incredibles

monsters inc

toy story

and the original omen

Like the Pixar addiction there, Pablo.

One thet ios nowhere near my favourites list that I own on DVD and keep popping in the machine is...

Con Air

I have no idea why I like it. The story isn't fantastic, there's no single element to the film that sticks out for me, but with all the pieces put together it just works. It's just fast from start to finish, you never get a break with it. The one-liners and throw-away lines are great "Put the bunny back in the box", "It's got your name written aaaaalllll over it". The interaction between characters, especially Poe and Larkin is spot on.

It's nice to see everybody's own lists. Especially finding out how many of those films we have also seen and enjoyed.

Rich- I totally agree with you regarding "Field of Dreams" and "Big Fish", it brings to mind my brother's (he's the only son) relationship with our dad.

Peter- I have seen only 3 films on your list, I really should be watching Spartacus already. Did you ever see Bertolucci's The Last Emperor? I think that was also released the same time as Empire of the Sun?

Pablo- I love Monsters Inc. I saw it twice in one evening with a friend who also loves it.

Lee- Re: Con Air. Do you think it has something to do with Nicholas Cage? *winks* Saying that I do like most of Cage's films.

Much as I love film and films, I'm struggling to think of many that I've seen over and over and over and over again. I went through a phase in the mid-90s where I saw Reservoir Dogs an average of once every three months for a couple of years. And I'll watch Blazing Saddles and Airplane! any time that either film is on television. (Oddly enough, I've never felt the need to actually own either of those films so I could watch them whenever I liked. I've got the Tarantino film on DVD, though.)

That really is about it. Even films I love dearly I don't usually watch them a lot of times. Probably it's because I'm always in search of new stuff to watch (i.e. stuff I haven't seen before; "new" just means "new to me", it could've been made last week or fifty years ago) that I don't have much time to constantly revisit old stuff.

Oh, and I may say that I totally understand what you mean about having a huge collection waiting for you and no time to watch it all. I've got over a hundred films waiting for me on DVD that I've not watched yet (and that's just the films; I don't want to know how many more films I've got on DVD where I've seen the film but not explored the extras properly yet), and though I've sworn this will be the year I finally kill off that backlog, I keep buying new things so the backlog is now bigger than it was at the start of the year... sigh.

Groundhog Day.

Taxi Driver - Ever since I saw this movie it has been my absolute favourite. I have seen it countless times and DeNiro's portrayal of Travis Bickle is still absolutely brilliant. I think deep down I can identify with Travis at some level. Probably the discontempt/dissatisfaction for certain aspects of the world around him/me. When I'm on the bus or in the city centre and you see the amount of filth and scumbags it makes me wish I could do something about it. When you hear politicians with nothing but lies and empty promises. Makes you wish a real rain would come and wash all the scum off the streets.

Back To The Future (Part I, II & III) - If there is one series of films that can take me back to my childhood (no pun intended) it is most definitely Back To The Future. I remember seeing Part II & III in the Classic Cinema in Harold's Cross, Dublin (complete with intermission). I couldn't get enough of the movies. I still have my original copy of BTTF on VHS, I cannot part with it. It was simply too big a part of my childhood. The nostalgia factor every single time I watch them is immeasurable.

Tim Burton's Batman - I'd always been a fan of Batman, but when my parents took me at the tender age of 5 to see Batman in a movie theatre in England while we were on holiday, wowie-wow-wow! I was blown away. From the moment Danny Elfman's score began to grow and become almost an entity in itself, I loved it. Nicholson's performance is still kinda the benchmark for super-villains, and Keaton is still probably my favourite Batman. Would anyone else have loved to see him portray Batman in the "real world" like in Batman Begins?

Die Hard - THE action movie against which all other successors will be judged. Such a simple setup, but a BRILLIANT action movie. As Rynndar coined the phrase, "a dick flick"!
Even now, about 15 years after first seeing it, if I am flicking through channels and Die Hard is on, the remote control is carefully placed on the couch and not touched until the credits roll at the end. Yippee-ki-yay!

The Big Lebowski - Perhaps the finest comedy film I have ever seen. It's smart, intelligent and witty comedy. I have watched this hundreds of times and I still pick up on new jokes, etc every time I watch it. Jeff Bridges' portrayal of The Dude is nigh on perfect! Plus a fantastic Steve Buscemi, John Goodman, Julianne Moore, Philip Seymour Hoffman, John Turturro, and David Huddleston (Santa Claus to those who don't know!) rounding out a FANTASTIC cast. Like a fine wine, The Big Lebowski gets better with age.

Spider-Man - Wanna know how long I waited for this movie? ALL MY LIFE!
As a kid, I had a Spider-Man costume and used to play around in it, jumping in and out of my dad's car through the sunroof. Yes, I was a psycho kid. Ever since being a little boy I LOVED Spider-Man. I remember back in the day the discussions I'd have with friends (Rynndar included!) about who would play Spider-Man should the movie ever be made. Tom Cruise was often mentioned, I'm glad now we weren't studio execs (come on, we were kids and he was a big name!)
But then FINALLY in 2002 Sam Raimi's movie came out and I fell in love with Spider-Man all over again. The origin story (despite being slightly altered and updated) was absolutely brilliant. I don't think there is any way it could have been possibly improved. Lots of people bitched and moaned about the Green Goblin costume but if you want to make it "fit" to the story of it being the suit of a super-soldier, well then I don't think a rubber mask would have quite done the trick.

So there's my list of faves I guess you'd call them. Honorable mentions:
Man On The Moon
Batman Begins
Spider-Man 2
Pulp Fiction
High Fidelity
Man On The Moon

I guess you're right Simone, it could be Cage for Con Air. Although in a 100% platonic sense. Just for clarity. Just in case you're going weak at the knees over him.

I'd have The Rock on there too if I owned it on DVD, (a) for Cage (b) Ed Harris. Both of these Cage films I think Cage has superb casting partners (The Rock is more Ed Harris than Sean Connery for me though).

Lousie - Good one with Shawshank Redemption. Missed at the cinema, seen on Sky a couple of times, borrowed the DVD, finally bought the DVD a couple of weeks ago. This is going to be watched frequently.

Hard to come up with a definitive list. After reading the posts, I'm shocked to realize I don't own The Princess Bride.

Anyway, some of the ones I watch repeatedly:

Desperado: I love the opening to the film with Buscemi and Tarantino's cameo is good for a laugh. More than anything, though, it's the music mixed with the action.

The Two Towers and Return of the King: There are parts that I skip sometimes, but overall, I can watch these two over and over again.

Oh Brother Where Art Thou: Delmar cracks me up. "That's all I got!". And Clooney's lip syncing is priceless.

Anything Pixar: My son's just shy of 3...

Hellboy: Not sure why, but I'll always stop to watch Hellboy on TV. Don't have the DVD, though.

I'm sure I'm leaving some important ones out, but oh well.

Simone - Indeed, it was released, if not the same year, very close. Never watched the Last Emperor, though. Bertolucci scares me at nights, you know.

Spidey - Quite interesting list. Notice how John McTiernan has appeared twice in this post. He was great.

It was a little disturbing I must say Peter.

Hey Lee, no, I dont have that feelings for Cage, correct me if I am wrong but John Cusack was also in Con Air wasnt he?

Hey Peter, John McTiernan is a really good director. He hasn't made a lot of films, and some have been slightly sketchy, but when he is on song he is on song!

Simone - yes, John Cusack was in Con Air. He's such a good actor. I love watching him. High Fidelity is a great picture.

THE BIG LEBOWSKI: it's just so mundanely epic it makes me want to pretend I'm important and watch it over and over. it really does have a larger than life feel

HUDSON HAWK: because no other movie has ever remotely reproduced its' feel. it's one of a kind...slapstick superheroic nonsense...with mario brothers AND Danny Aiello with a grenade launcher... you can't miss...

Actually Spidey, I LOVE JOHN CUSACK! I also liked him in High Fidelity and Serendipity. I have most of his films on DVD. Imagine my thrill when he did a film opposite Al Pacino in "City Hall", YAY! I can watch any film even though if it turns out a dud (like Must Love Dogs) but with him in it it's much bearable.

mogulus - great choice of films there. The Big Lebowski is just so damn good. And Hudson Hawk is a GREAT movie. New special edition coming out soon too...

simone - I actually haven't seen City Hall yet. I know, i know, i bow my head!

Speaking of John McTiernan, I used to watch Die Hard just about every other week. Wore out my VHS before DVDs came along.

But the strangest one? If I come across Earthquake I will sit down and watch the whole. entire. thing.

Shawn of the dead

Life Aquatic with Steve Zissu


Pirates of the Carabiean

Two Girls and a Guy

The Great Outdoors

Blade Runner


JAWS !!!!!!! Any time, at any part I can watch Jaws and love every second!

Spidey, if you are still picking up new jokes in The Big Lebowski after "hundreds" of viewings I really feel sorry for you. "Hundreds" seems to me to mean a lot more than 300, but 300 at the very least. [Removed because it became a little personal at this point - Richard]

Ferris Bueller's Day Off. I can watch it any time day or night. I must have seen it a gazillion and one times now.

He's a righteous dude...

Got that right about Ferris Bueller Dave.

Dear Filmstalker readers,

I would like to apologise to you all regarding the inaccuracy of my Big Lebowski comments. I apologise if they were in any way misinterpreted as pointed out by one reader (jim).

It was my belief that this "feature" by Richard was aimed at the hearts of people. To get the true feelings of us towards certain films and, ones which hold a special connection with us. One man's Goodfellas is another man's Battlefield Earth, after all.

I did not mean to cause offence by simply getting carried away with sheer joy upon reflection and expression of my "connection" with The Big Lebowski.

I ask you, the readers, to accept my wholehearted written apology. Furthermore, to appease those upset, I shall repost my original statement regarding said film. (Alterations have been bolded)

The Big Lebowski - Perhaps the finest comedy film I have ever seen. It's a smart, intelligent and witty comedy. I have watched this dozens of times and I still pick up on new jokes, subtle actions or reactions, etc every time I watch it. Jeff Bridges' portrayal of The Dude is nigh on perfect! Plus a fantastic Steve Buscemi, John Goodman, Julianne Moore, Philip Seymour Hoffman, John Turturro, and David Huddleston (Santa Claus to those who don't know!) rounding out a FANTASTIC cast. Like a fine wine, The Big Lebowski gets better with age.

Now, everyone (jim) happy?

PS. See here for Richards "manifesto". I don't see "personal attacks" listed. Maybe you should have perused through that first jim. How about being productive and share with us YOUR list of films you can watch again and again, rather than trying to be the pedantic smart-arse you think you are. And for your information, I don't drink White Russians or use recreational drugs.

I thank you all for your time.

Now Spidey just made want to watch The Big Lebowski!

Spidey, no need to apologise. Your comments are welcomed and very interesting.

I apologise that I missed Jim's rather personal comments and didn't alter them earlier - I'm about to.

Feel free to let me know if I've missed someone being a bit too personal about it all.

ANY Star Wars film (especially eps. III-VI - I've only seen them a million and half times. I'll see them a million and a half times more before I'm dead.)

Big Lebowski

Pulp Fiction

American Beauty

Fight Club

Big Trouble in Little China


Interview with the Vampire
Boogie Nights

Saving Private Ryan

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas

Leaving Las Vegas

Alien: Resurrection

Two Girls and a Guy

Bottle Rocket

Brotherhood of the Wolf


~ Drewbacca

Hey Richard, no need to apologise for not spotting jim's comments. In fact, I'm glad I got the chance to read them for myself. As regards my "apology", my tongue was firmly planted in my cheek. But thanks anyway!

I buy DVDs but I hardly watch a lot of them because there is always some movie I have not seen that I need to see. But if I were to list some I have that I pop in and watch more frequently than others, the list would include:

Iron Giant

The Incredibles

Dark City

The Matrix

The ending of Iron Giant touches me so deeply. I don't know what it is about Brad Bird but he seems to know how to make a movie that connects with the audience. Dark City and The Matrix just kicks butt. Cool concepts and awesome effects.


Drewbacca says, "ANY Star Wars film (especially eps. III-VI - I've only seen them a million and half times. I'll see them a million and a half times more before I'm dead.)

Drewbacca, youre the MAN!!! MTFBWY! Although among the SW prequels, I loved Episodes I and III the most.

This John Cusack talk really got to me, I saw "Gross Pointe Blank" again today after a long time. I've always loved this films witty repartee, not to mention the soundtrack.

Martin to Debi: "If I show up at your door, chances are you did something to bring me there".

My favorite all time movie would have to be Lake Placid with Betty White. It always cracks me up. The best one liners in a movie.

Strangely enough, there are very few films I watch time and time again. I think I am with James Russell on this one.

"Brazil", "Blade Runner", "Apocalypse Now" and "Citizen Kane" are movies that I have been to see again and again at the cinema - but I don't own any of those on video or DVD!

Baz Luhrman's movies "Romeo + Juliet" and "Moulin Rouge" have been watched at home many, many times.

With all these films, the more I watch them, the more there is to see - they bear repeat viewing, indeed they benefit from it.

In no particular order.

Kiki's Delivery Service. My daughter has been cuddling up with me regulary since she was 6 and watching this one (she's 9 now) and it never fails to leave us feeling lifted. Perfect animation.

Superman (Donner). A true 'Ten Feet Tall' movie (as in you leave the cinema feeling…)

It Could Happen To You. Another feel good movie. Watched this while doing my script writing course and it’s a perfect 'by the numbers' script.

Forbidden Planet. Ahh those 'tonalities'.

Miracle Mile. Anthony Edwards was soooooo cute ! He should have had a bigger career.

Oh FemBot, you shouldn't be embarrassed about Superman - that's a superb movie.

I just watched Miracle Mile again last night (it's the 1988 movie by the way, not the Korean 2004 one) and it's still great. If you have never seen go 'find' a copy. Please don't check out IMDB etc. first as it's a movie you have to see cold first time to get the best effect. Great site by the way !

Many thanks Fembot! I'll put that film on my to see list (currently at over 200 entries!).


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