LawrenceA

Top Ten Films of...

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In this thread I would like to share and compare lists of your personal top ten movies, going year by year. I will start with 1930, and add a new year every day or so. Please feel free to share your own, and any comments, suggestions and complaints about each other's choices are expected and encouraged. I like to read other's lists as sources of titles to look for in the future, and seeing other people's idiosyncratic choices can be amusing. My only request is if you personally don't like top ten lists, think they are stupid, a waste of time, been done to death, etc., please just move along to some other thread.

I will start by stating the year, how many titles from that year I've seen (yes, I have a list), and then the top ten. If I have any comments, I'll add them at the end. I start at 1930 simply for the reason that I haven't seen enough titles from the 20's or earlier to merit a list. Also, I know to expect some inconsistencies with what year to ascribe each film to. I try to use the imdb listed year, but everyone has they're own methodology. So, without further ado...

1930 - 37 films seen

1. ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT
2. L'AGE D'OR
3. ANIMAL CRACKERS
4. THE BLUE ANGEL
5. UP THE RIVER
6. UNDER THE ROOFS OF PARIS
7. THE DIVORCEE
8. MOROCCO
9. EARTH
10. THE BIG HOUSE

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I'm playing catch up with pre-code films.  I have only seen 24 films from 1930.  My lists are an ever evolving hobby.

 

1930

 

1.  All Quiet on the Western Front

2.  Westfront 1918

3.  The Blue Angel

4.  Outward Bound

5.  Animal Crackers

6.  The Big House

7.  The Divorcee

8.  Tom Sawyer

9.  Morocco

10. Min and Bill

 

Under the Roofs of Paris and L'Age d'or are on my runner up list along with Anna Christie, The Big Trail and The Royal Family of Broadway.

 

I have yet to see Earth or Up the River but I have copies.

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UP THE RIVER is creaky and corny, but I liked seeing Spencer Tracy and Humphrey Bogart when they were starting out.

I don't know WESTFRONT 1918, and I haven't seen OUTWARD BOUND.

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UP THE RIVER is creaky and corny, but I liked seeing Spencer Tracy and Humphrey Bogart when they were starting out.

I don't know WESTFRONT 1918, and I haven't seen OUTWARD BOUND.

Westfront 1918 by G.W. Pabst is just about as good as All Quiet.   I think it has been on TCM.   Outward Bound was remade with Garfield as Between Two Worlds (1944).  The remake plays on TCM quite a bit.  

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1. Stage Door (1937)

2. Gone with the Wind (1939)

3. Bringing up Baby (1938)

4. The Thin Man (1934)

5. The Women (1939)

6. The Cat and the Canary (1939)

7. Merrily We Live (1938)

8. Double Wedding (1937)

9. My Man Godfrey (1936)

10. Broadway Melody of 1936 (1936)

 

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1. Stage Door (1937)
2. Gone with the Wind (1939)
3. Bringing up Baby (1938)
4. The Thin Man (1934)
5. The Women (1939)
6. The Cat and the Canary (1939)
7. Merrily We Live (1938)
8. Double Wedding (1937)
9. My Man Godfrey (1936)
10. Broadway Melody of 1936 (1936)


I haven't seen DOUBLE WEDDING. I'll look out for it.

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Geez, I need to start watching more films from 1930.  And I like the two lists posted for 1930.  Some excellent choices.

 

1. Morocco

2. The Blue Angel

3. Ladies of Leisure

4. Born Reckless

5. Murder!

6. All Quiet on the Western Front

7. The Big Trail

8. Monte Carlo

9. Animal Crackers

10. Raffles

11. Anna Christie

12. The Truth About Youth

13. Men Without Women

14. Up the River

15. Sin Takes a Holiday

16. Juno and the Paycock

17. Elstree Calling

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1931 - 49 films seen

1. FRANKENSTEIN
2. M
3. A NOUS LA LIBERTE
4. CITY LIGHTS
5. THE PUBLIC ENEMY
6. MARIUS
7. MONKEY BUSINESS
8. DRACULA
9. LITTLE CAESAR
10. THE FRONT PAGE

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LawrenceA, our lists for 1930 and 1931 are quite similar.

 

For 1931 - 39 films seen

 

1.  City Lights

2.  M

3.  Monkey Business

4.  Frankenstein

5.  The Front Page

6.  La Chienne

7.  The Public Enemy

8.  Dracula

9.  The Three Penny Opera

10.  Little Caesar

 

I have a long runner up list.  A Nous La Liberte, The Champ, The Sin of Madelon Claudet, Le Million, A Free Soul, and Huckleberry Finn to name a few.

 

I haven't seen Marius as yet, but now have copies of the original Fanny trilogy.

 

There are a lot of films on FrankGrimes 1930 list that I have yet to see.  Many of the pre-code films just never were in circulation when I was growing up.  Thankfully TCM is playing them now and I am in catch-up.

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I haven't seen LA CHIENNE yet, though I do have it taped. It's another of the "1001 Movies to See...". My lists are fairly conservative for the first few decades, with a mix of Hollywood, foreign and arthouse films that are generally acclaimed. After that, though, my choices get a little more original.

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I might try to contribute here at a later date.  Sounds like a good thread idea, however, I'm not sure(if I got the correct drift) that each decade would actually yield  10 movies that I liked.

 

Sometimes, it may be ONE YEAR that has produced TEN OR MORE movies that I really like, and sometimes the whole decade may come up with only maybe ONE or TWO.

 

It's not neccesarily because I'm that slective, but I'm also not so infatuated with the notion of "classic" movies that I'll lay claim to adoration of every movie that many consider "classic" ever made.

 

So I guess I'll look in every now and then and see where the general direction is going and then maybe I might be able to come up with some kind of list.

 

 

Sepiatone

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I might try to contribute here at a later date.  Sounds like a good thread idea, however, I'm not sure(if I got the correct drift) that each decade would actually yield  10 movies that I liked.

 

Sometimes, it may be ONE YEAR that has produced TEN OR MORE movies that I really like, and sometimes the whole decade may come up with only maybe ONE or TWO.

 

It's not neccesarily because I'm that slective, but I'm also not so infatuated with the notion of "classic" movies that I'll lay claim to adoration of every movie that many consider "classic" ever made.

 

So I guess I'll look in every now and then and see where the general direction is going and then maybe I might be able to come up with some kind of list.

 

 

Sepiatone

 

If for an entire decade you can only name ONE or TWO movies you feel are 'classic'  that sounds very selective to me.

 

My difficultly here is where I can find a list of all the movies for a given year.    Without some type of master list of movies by year to choose from,  the task just takes too much work.   

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If for an entire decade you can only name ONE or TWO movies you feel are 'classic'  that sounds very selective to me.
 
My difficultly here is where I can find a list of all the movies for a given year.    Without some type of master list of movies by year to choose from,  the task just takes too much work.


If you go to imdb, pick a movie from a given year, and then on that film's page, click the year beside the title. It will take you to a list of all the titles from that year.

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I might try to contribute here at a later date.  Sounds like a good thread idea, however, I'm not sure(if I got the correct drift) that each decade would actually yield  10 movies that I liked.
 
Sometimes, it may be ONE YEAR that has produced TEN OR MORE movies that I really like, and sometimes the whole decade may come up with only maybe ONE or TWO.
 
It's not neccesarily because I'm that slective, but I'm also not so infatuated with the notion of "classic" movies that I'll lay claim to adoration of every movie that many consider "classic" ever made.
 
So I guess I'll look in every now and then and see where the general direction is going and then maybe I might be able to come up with some kind of list.
 
 
Sepiatone


There are no rules about your posts. If you want to just name one movie or twenty, that's fine. If you just want to say something someone else listed was crummy that's fine too, or if you want to just mention a title no one else has that you like.

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If I might add my current choices for performances for 1930 they would be:

 

Best Actor

 

Emil Jannings, The Blue Angel

 

Best Actress

 

Greta Garbo, Anna Christie

 

Best Supporting Actor

 

Louis Wolheim, All Quiet on the Western Front

 

Best Supporting Actress

 

Marie Dressler, Anna Christie

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If I might add my current choices for performances for 1930 they would be:
 
Best Actor
 
Emil Jannings, The Blue Angel
 
Best Actress
 
Greta Garbo, Anna Christie
 
Best Supporting Actor
 
Louis Wolheim, All Quiet on the Western Front
 
Best Supporting Actress
 
Marie Dressler, Anna Christie


Nice! I wouldn't mind seeing these for each year as we go, if you have them.

I love Wolheim in that film.

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I've not seen enough movies from each given year to make a list, and I don't keep very good track, on top of that... nevertheless, one film that would definitely make my list for 1930 (though it wasn't released until '37) is The Tale of The Fox. A funny and highly original French stop-motion (with puppets) animated film. I wish TCM would show it, because I've only watched it in episodes from YT, but even chopped-up and fuzzy-looking it still merits repeat viewings. The animation is very well-done and I've found that the story-telling aspect and energy was not compromised in the slightest.

 

(Edit: I have found that there is a far, far better looking copy on YT now than the one I watched. Thank goodness!)

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I've not seen enough movies from each given year to make a list, and I don't keep very good track, on top of that... nevertheless, one film that would definitely make my list for 1930 (though it wasn't released until '37) is The Tale of The Fox. A funny and highly original French stop-motion (with puppets) animated film. I wish TCM would show it, because I've only watched it in episodes from YT, but even chopped-up and fuzzy-looking it still merits repeat viewings. The animation is very well-done and I've found that the story-telling aspect and energy was not compromised in the slightest.


That sounds interesting. Thanks for the heads up!

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The two lists that have been posted for 1931 show more depth than mine.  I like that.  Very nice lists.

 

1931

 

1. M

2. Tabu: A Story of the South Seas

3. The Smiling Lieutenant

4. Frankenstein

5. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

6. Dracula

7. Dracula (Spanish)

8. Marius

9. Rich and Strange

10. The Public Enemy

11. Man of the World

12. Le Million

13. Smart Money

14. Blonde Crazy

15. Monkey Business

16. The Miracle Woman

17. The Road to Singapore

18. Millie

19. Strangers May Kiss

20. The Maltese Falcon

21. Trader Horn

22. The Front Page

23. Other Men's Women

24. The Man in Possession

25. The Black Camel

26. Five Star Final

27. Mata Hari

28. Eran Trece (Charlie Chan Carries On)

29. Little Caesar

30. Private Lives

31. A Free Soul

32. A Connecticut Yankee

33. Platinum Blonde

34. Night Nurse

35. Arrowsmith

36. Seas Beneath

37. The Skin Game

38. Safe in Hell

39. Fighting Caravans

40. City Streets

41. The Criminal Code

42. Bachelor Apartment

43. The Painted Desert

44. Cimarron

45. Illicit

46. Ambassador Bill

47. The Bad Sister

48. The Cheat

49. Shipmates

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If I might add my current choices for performances for 1931 they would be:

 

Best Actor

 

Peter Lorre, M

 

Best Actress

 

Helen Hayes, The Sin of Madelon Claudet

 

Best Supporting Actor

 

Boris Karloff, Frankenstein

 

Best Supporting Actress

 

Helen Hayes, Arrowsmith

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In looking at the IMDB lists for 1930 and 1931, I see so many films that I've never heard of and would love to see! Many of those that I do like have already been mentioned.

 

But for 1931, I would add director Archie Mayo's Svengali. That is one of my favorite films of 1931, in terms of performances, style (very expressionistic), and story. I find the ending quite moving, when Svengali (John Barrymore) triumphs in death, taking Trilby with him (taking her away from Bramwell Fletcher's insipid Little Billee. Fletcher's best role came the following year, when he laughed himself to death in The Mummy). The use of the song "Ben Bolt" makes it all the more haunting; and the presence of Paul Porcasi in the small role of the impresario/emcee, kicks it up another notch for me. Porcasi played similar roles in many early films, including 1930's Morocco and in Maytime (1937), another film with John Barrymore in a Svengali-type role.

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Screen%2Bshot%2B2015-12-13%2Bat%2B9.20.0
 
My list:

1. ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT
2. THE DIVORCEE
3. MIN AND BILL
4. THE BIG HOUSE
5. MONTE CARLO
6. NOT SO DUMB
7. MURDER!
8. PAID
9. DOUGHBOYS
10. LADIES OF LEISURE and MOROCCO (tie)

Honorable Mentions: MOBY DICK; JOURNEY'S END; MADAM SATAN; ANNA CHRISTIE; and THE BIG TRAIL. 
 
I think the best performers of 1930 were Lew Ayres; Marie Dressler; Wallace Beery; Marion Davies; and Barbara Stanwyck.

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Screen%2Bshot%2B2015-12-13%2Bat%2B9.25.1

 

My list:

1. THE PUBLIC ENEMY
2. DR. JEKYLL AND MR. HYDE
3. CIMARRON
4. A FREE SOUL
5. FRANKENSTEIN
6. THE CHAMP
7. STREET SCENE
8. THE MIRACLE WOMAN
9. FIVE STAR FINAL
10. THE SIN OF MADELON CLAUDET

Honorable Mentions: DRACULA; MONKEY BUSINESS; PLATINUM BLONDE; PRIVATE LIVES; and THE SMILING LIEUTENANT. 

 

I think the best performers of 1931 were James Cagney; Fredric March; Wallace Beery; Lionel Barrymore; and Helen Hayes.

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If I might add my current choices for performances for 1931 they would be:
 
Best Actor
 
Peter Lorre, M
 
Best Actress
 
Helen Hayes, The Sin of Madelon Claudet
 
Best Supporting Actor
 
Boris Karloff, Frankenstein
 
Best Supporting Actress
 
Helen Hayes, Arrowsmith


Interesting that Boris is in the Supporting category. I agree he should have won. That performance has a lot of nuance.

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1932 - 70 films seen

1. I AM A FUGITIVE FROM A CHAIN GANG
2. ISLAND OF LOST SOULS
3. SCARFACE
4. FANNY
5. DR. JEKYLL & MR. HYDE
6. VAMPYR
7. HORSE FEATHERS
8. TARZAN, THE APE MAN
9. THE MUMMY
10. FREAKS

I know there's some discrepancy about the DR. JEKYLL...release date. I use the January 3rd 1932 date.

My choices ran pretty heavily to genre films this year.

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