When you decide to pick out ten movies you’d want with you on a desert island, you have to take into account that you won’t be able to plug in your TV or DVD player. So ideally, you’ll want to take movies where you can just look at the cover and have the entire film come flooding back to you.
With that in mind, I’ll count down my top ten movies I’d take to a desert island:
- The Philadelphia Story, not to be confused with Philadelphia. For one thing, Katherine Hepburn is a hell of a lot more luscious than a scrawny, scraggly Tom Hanks.
- Some Like It Hot. You just know all the women, and that includes Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon in drag, are lesbians. Enough homoeroticism, sexual innuendo, and Marilyn Monroe bosoms to subvert an entire repressed decade.
- Clueless. Whole consecutive pages of quotable dialogue make up for the few easily concealed blemishes on this teen movie’s face.
- A Fish Called Wanda. I like any movie when the paunchy guy gets the hot girl in the end.
- The Scream trilogy, although Scream 3 is the movie I’d eat first when I finally ran out of food because that’s the weakest in the series by far. But the first one has that great scene where Randy is simultaneously telling Jamie Lee Curtis and his own actor, Jamie Kennedy, “Watch out, Jamie, you know he’s around… Behind you!” Great stuff, even if Neve Campbell can never quite lift herself out of tortured-teen mode and have fun being the heroine.
- The Exorcist. I shouldn’t need to explain why.
- When Harry Met Sally…. Did you know I can do Meg Ryan’s deli scene word for word and scream for scream? But only when I’m really drunk. See if you can get me to do it if you meet me at a party.
- The Iron Giant, because I always cry like a big baby at the end. Sure it’s a children’s movie, but it beats out anything Disney has ever released.
- Se7en, for taking me on a wild ride through the darker recesses of the human psyche. What I thought was in the box at the end was even worse than what was actually in there. How twisted am I? I hate you, David Fincher, and thank you.
- Star Wars, the first movie that got my 4-year-old self to stop asking my folks, “What time is it?” at the theater. George Lucas’s greatest battle was not with the Death Star, it was with an impatient preschooler. He put the kid into a state of slack-jawed awe and instilled a lifelong love of movies in the process. You win, George.