Movies From The Swinging Sixties
1966 wasn't a great time for Hollywood. Soon to being a period of great exploration, they were still stuck in the mire of the dying studio system with overblown epics and musicals, witless sex farce, childish adult drama and endless attempts to recreate Charade (which itself was faux Hitchcock).
But they still managed to make some good movies, as did the rest of the world. Let's see what Jesse Walker claims are the top ten from that year:
4. The Battle of Algiers
5. Punch and Judy
6. Death of a Bureaucrat
7. Le deuxième soufflé
9. The Shooting
10. Andrei Rublev
A good list, but notice not much (any?) mainstream Hollywood product, as Jesse notes.
I'm not a big Leone fan, and I think TGTBATU is a bit overdone. I like it, but don't consider it the classic that so many others do. Persona I'd put on my list. Seconds might make the list just because we get to see Rock Hudson in something this bizarre.
The Battle Of Algiers is very influential--it practically started the documentary look for film action (which is mostly a bad thing). But while influential, I wouldn't call it great. "Punch And Judy" is a short (even if by one of the greatest animators of our age).
Haven't seen Death Of A Bureaucrat, though I'd like to. Haven't see Le Deuxieme Souffle, and I've seen almost everything by Melville.
Sometimes Antonioni is a bit much, but I do like Blowup--maybe even enough for the top ten. The Shooting is okay, but not top ten, or twenty. Andrei Rublev is a bit long, but a true classic (though I'm surprised Jesse, or anyone, doesn't think "The Bell" is the highlight of the movie).
12. Et Cetera
13. Who Wants to Kill Jessie?
15. El Dorado
16. A Report on the Party and the Guests
17. Death of the Gorilla
18. The Cut-Ups
20. It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown
A Man For All Seasons won the Oscar. It has some bits of sharp writing, but overall doesn't impress me that much. "Et Cetera" is another short by Vankmajer. (Also shorts are 17, 18 and 19, none of which I've seen).
Haven't seen 13. Alfie made Michael Caine, and is beloved, but not so much my me. Maybe I should give it another chance. El Dorado, a weird reboot of Rio Bravo where they're not good enough any more, would probably make my top ten. A Report On The Party And The Guests is a decent political allegory. Great Pumpkin is a TV special.
Other films that would make my top ten:
The Fortune Cookie (Billy Wilder's last masterpiece, though it does have the problem of not knowing which character is the hero)
King Of Hearts (a little clichéd, but sweet and fun)
Lord Love A Duck (not great in a lot of ways, but few films fascinate me as much as this one)
A Big Hand For The Little Lady, The Big T.N.T. Show, Buster Keaton Rides Again, Closely Watched Trains (considering how well the Czech's performed on Jesse's list, I was surprised not to see this one), A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum (as an adaptation of the source material it's hopeless, but it works okay if you watch it as an original work), Georgy Girl, Walk Don't Run (because it's Cary Grant's goodbye), What Did You Do In The War Daddy?, What's Up Tiger Lily?
Films of interest:
7 Women, After The Fox, Alvarez Kelly, Any Wednesday, The Appaloosa, Arabesque, Batman, The Bible: In The Beginning..., The Blue Max, Born Free, Boy Did I Get The Wrong Number!, Carry On Screamming!, Cast A Giant Shadow, The Chase, Chimes At Midnight (some call this a 1966 film--does Jesse?), Daisies, Dead Heat On A Merry-Go-Round, Dr. Goldfoot And The Girl Bombs, Farhenheit 451, The Family Way, Fantastic Voyage, A Fine Madness, Frankie And Johnny, Gambit, The Ghost And Mr. Chicken, The Glass Bottom Boat, Grand Prix, The Group, Harper, Hawaii, Hotel Paradiso, How To Steal A Million, Is Paris Burning?, Judith, Kaleidoscope, Khartoum, Kiss Kiss...Bang Bang, Kiss The Girls And Make Them Die, Lt. Robin Crusoe U.S.N., Madame X, A Man And A Woman, A Man Called Flintstone, Masculin Feminin, Mister Buddwing, Modesty Blaise, Morgan—A Suitable Case For Treatment, Munster Go Home!, Navajo Joe, Nayak, Not With My Wife You Don’t, Once Before I Die, One Million Years B.C., One Of Our Spies Is Missing, The Oscar, Our Man Flint, Penelope, The Professionals, The Quiller Memorandum, Rage, Ride In The Whirlwind, The Russians Are Coming The Russians Are Coming, The Sand Pebbles, The Silencers, The Singing Nun, This Property Is Condemned, Three On A Couch, Thunderbirds Are Go, Torn Curtain, The Trouble With Angels, The Ugly Dachsund (loved this as a kid, but haven't seen it since), Way...Way Out, Who Are You Polly Maggoo?, Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf?, The Wild Angels, You're A Big Boy Now, Zatoichi’s Pilgrimage, Zatoichi’s Vengeance