Sunday, March 24, 2013

Sunday Showdown: AFI vs. IMDb (#49 & #47)

It's the Sunday Showdown: continuing my comparison of the American Film Institute's and Internet Movie Database's Top 100 films. I've been having a difficult time getting my act together enough to watch my weekly Sunday Showdown flicks  for a while; too many distractions. And, as always, too much Facebook. But I'm back.

Double header today: #49: Intolerance vs. The Shining and #47: A Streetcar Named Desire vs. Wall-E.

Intolerance's Ancient Babylon
I almost didn’t get to #49: Intolerance vs. The Shining. Because as much as I love and appreciate D.W. Griffith... a 3 hour silent movie? Exceptionally painful for my short attention span brain.

Although I was well-familiar with Intolerance due to multiple film courses in college, I had never seen it as a whole in one sitting. The film is amazing, considering it was made in 1916. Four stories blended into one, all to tell of mankind’s intolerance for each other throughout history.

The movie was decades before its time. Over 3000 extras and costuming, sets and even visual effects that still stand up well in viewing today. If you’ve ever seen clips from a silent film portraying the massive walls of ancient Babylon, well, then you’ve seen part of Intolerance and its breath-taking sets. D.W. Griffith was a genius. Father of modern film.

All this versus…

The Shining. Stephen King’s classic(?) tale put to film by my all-time-NOT-favorite but director-with-the-most-films-on-the-Top-100-lists: Stanley Kubrick. There’s no love lost between he and I (see here, or here, or here, or here).

I’ll admit the movie is equally terrifying and weird. There are people -- sad film geeks -- who spend most of their waking hours trying to figure out all the nuances of meaning and secrets in the film. There’s even a new documentary coming out on The Shining and all its craziness :  Room 237. Whatever.  I still can’t figure out how Jack Nicholson’s character got into the picture at the end.

‘Splain that, Lucy!

Oh, it has something to do with the number 12 like everything else in the film? Well, I didn’t know that. Maybe The Shining is a work of genius then!  But probably not.

So, no big surprise here: I’m going to choose Intolerance, the silent epic that influenced multiple generations of filmmaking over The Shining that influenced multiple acid trips and horror-film geeks.

Brando & Leigh's Desire
#47: A Streetcar Named Desire vs. Wall-E.  Seriously?  I know I’m not a big animated film fan, but I can’t even believe Wall-E made the top 100 list. I mean, it was sweet and romantic, with some nice moments. But one of the top 100 films of all time? I think not.  I can think of half a dozen animated films off the top my head more deserving of being in the top 100, including: The Incredibles, Up, even Snow White (in terms of historical cinematic value), for heaven’s sake.

And against Vivien Leigh and Marlon Brando’s exquisite performances in Streetcar?  Sorry, Wall-E.  Not a chance.

So: #49: Intolerance over The Shining

#47: Streetcar Named Desire over  Wall-E

This brings AFI to a full 10 movie lead over IMDb, 33-23.

AFI’s Top 100
IMDb’s Top 100 (as of 1/1/12)


City Lights (1931)
LoTR: Return of the King (2003)
On the Waterfront (1954)
LoTR: Fellowship of the Ring (2001)
The Maltese Falcon (1941)
LoTR: The Two Towers(2002)

A Streetcar Named Desire (1951)
Wall E (2008)

Intolerance (1916)
The Shining (1980)
LoTR: Fellowship of the Ring (2001)
Spirited Away (2001)
Paths of Glory (1957)
Taxi Driver (1976)
A Clockwork Orange (1971)
Double Indemnity (1944)
M*A*S*H* (1970)
To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)
The Pianist (2002)
Jaws (1975)
The Lives of Others (2006)
Rocky (1976)
The Departed (2006)
The Gold Rush (1925)
Memento (2000)
Nashville (1975)
City Lights (1931)
Duck Soup (1933)
Aliens (1986)
Sullivan's Travels (1941)
Eternal Sunshine of a Spotless Mind (2004)
American Graffiti (1973)
Requiem for a Dream (2000)
Cabaret (1972)
Das Boot (1981)
Network (1976)
The Third Man (1949)
The African Queen (1951)
L.A. Confidential (1997)
Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)
Reservoir Dogs (1992)
Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1966)
Chinatown (1974)
Unforgiven (1992)
The Treasure of Sierra Madre (1948)
Tootsie (1982)
Modern Times (1936)
A Clockwork Orange (1971)
Life is Beautiful (1997)
Saving Private Ryan (1998)
Monty Python & the Holy Grail (1975)
The Shawshank Redemption (1994)
Back to the Future (1985)
Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid (1969)
The Prestige (2006)
Silence of the Lambs (1991)
Pan’s Labyrinth (2006)
In the Heat of the Night (1967)
Raging Bull (1980)
Forrest Gump (1994)
Cinema Paradiso (1988)
All the President’s Men  (1976)
Singing In the Rain (1952)
Modern Times (1936)
Some Like it Hot (1959)
The Wild Bunch (1969)
The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957)
The Apartment (1960)
Rashomon (1950)
Spartacus (1960)
All About Eve (1950)
Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans (1927)
Amadeus (1984)
Titanic (1997)
Once Upon A Time in America (1984)
Easy Rider (1969)
The Green Mile (1999)
A Night at the Opera (1935)
Full Metal Jacket (1987)
Platoon (1986)
2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
12 Angry Men (1957)
Inglorious Basterds (2009)
Bringing Up Baby (1938)
The Great Dictator (1940)
Sixth Sense (1999)
Braveheart (1995)
Swing Time (1936)
The Bicycle Thief (1948)
Sophie’s Choice (1982)
The Apartment (1960)
Up (2009)
Goodfellas (1990)
The French Connection (1971)
Downfall (2004)
Pulp Fiction (1994)
Gran Torino (2008)
The Last Picture Show (1971)
Metropolis (1927)
Do The Right Thing (1989)
The Sting (1973)
Blade Runner (1982)
Gladiator (2000)
Yankee Doodle Dandy (1942)
The Maltese Falcon (1941)
Toy Story (1995)
Unforgiven (1992)
Ben Hur (1959)
The Elephant Man (1980)

Next week #48:  Rear Window vs. Lawrence of Arabia.  Or awesome vs. awesome. Nearly impossible to choose.

1 comment:

  1. Janie, you know I'm a big animated movie fan...but I totally agree with you. Wall-E was pretty bad. Too slow, too preachy.