Last week I explained how I came to love classic film, and mentioned that my family had a lot to do with it – my grandparents, in particular. Here are five films that they introduced me to during my childhood that became favorites, and that remain favorites today (listed in no particular order)!
It’s a Mad Mad Mad Mad World (1963)
First memory: Sitting on the floor in front of my grandma’s TV with a little bowl of Cheez-its. I don’t remember what state we were in, as we lived in more than one and I watched this film in all of them. Many viewings of this kind of run together in my mind because we watched it so much! I must have been five or six, at the time of this particular movie-and-crackers memory. It was already a favorite by that point!
Do I still like it?: I haven’t watched it in years, but I did still like it the last time I saw it.
Gone with the Wind (1939)
First memory: I remember the first time I watched it. I lived in Tennessee, so it was some time between second and fourth grade. I was completely enamored by it from that first viewing.
Do I still like it?: Yes! It remains a favorite of mine.
The Wizard of Oz (1939)
First memory: I was sitting on the floor by the front door in the house where I now live. My grandpa was sitting in a recliner chair to my right and my grandma, dad and sister were on the couch. We had reached the scene where the Wicked Witch sends out her flying minions… and I tied my shoes for the first time! Again, this wasn’t the first time that I watched the film, but it is my first very distinct memory of it.
Do I still like it?: Yes! I re-watch it often and have even written two term papers about it.
The Sound of Music (1965)
First memory: I don’t really have any distinct memories of watching this. I just remember sitting in the living room on many rainy days, watching it with the family and signing along. I wanted to be adopted by Julie Andrews.
Do I still like it?: I don’t watch it nearly as often as I used to, but it’s still my favorite Rodgers and Hammerstein musical.
First memory: My first memory actually isn’t of watching the film at all. I remember seeing the VHS tape sitting on the large stack of VHS tapes in my grandparents’ living room. I picked it up and asked my grandma if it was about a teenage witch, because at the time I was a big fan of the show Sabrina, The Teenage Witch. Boy, was I wrong! But luckily, my wrongness was for the best, as I discovered when I finally watched that VHS tape a few years later. A teenage witch and her talking cat can’t hold a candle to Sabrina Fairchild and her infatuations. (And for the record, though I now watch the film on DVD, I still have that exact tape sitting happily on my shelf!)
Do I still like it?: I like it even more now than I did then!
Feel free to share your own classic childhood favorites in the comments!