The Best Oldies to Watch When You Need Cheering Up


Are there any movies you like to watch when you’re feeling happy, sad, bored, etc.? For me, it’s rarely my emotions that determine the movie I watch, although sometimes the time of year or even the weather can play a part. I mean, who doesn’t love to watch a good mystery when it’s storming outside?! Well, I do anyway! :-)

But when Frances stopped by my Facebook page and suggested I create a list of the best oldies to watch when you need cheering up, I thought it was a great idea. Even though I don’t usually pick a movie for that reason, I figured it certainly wouldn’t hurt to have a few titles handy just in case I’m ever in need of some good cheer myself.

So after going through the list of all the classic movies that I have seen so far, I came up with the following movies that I think would put a smile on just about anyone’s face. (To learn more about each movie, click on the title which will bring you to its summary page on

Laughter is the Best Medicine – Classic Comedies

It Happened One Night Hitchhiking Scene

It Happened One Night (1934) One of the first classic movies I ever watched, the hitchhiking scene with Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert showed me early on that old movies can be just as laugh out loud funny as current movies. I never would have believed that before I discovered my love for classic film.

The Thin Man (1934) and the entire “Thin Man” series. This movie is just so much fun. I love the mix of comedy and mystery, and the wonderful chemistry between its two stars William Powell and Myrna Loy make them one of classic film’s greatest on-screen couples. Continue reading →

My Top 10 Favorite Classic Movie Actors


I’m spending this summer day inside due to the unseasonably cool and cloudy weather we’re having here, so I thought this would be a good time to follow up my top 10 favorite actresses list with the list of my favorite actors.

As promised, Jimmy Stewart is firmly planted in the top spot. :-) And as with my actresses list, after number one these are not necessarily in an exact order because I love them all so much, but it’s pretty close.

My top 10 favorite classic movie actors are:

  1. Jimmy Stewart
  2. Cary Grant
  3. James Cagney
  4. Gene Kelly
  5. Joseph Cotten
  6. William Powell
  7. Robert Taylor
  8. Claude Rains
  9. Tyrone Power
  10. Clark Gable

Honorable mention: Humphrey Bogart and Spencer Tracy. I didn’t do an honorable mention for actresses, but I just had to for actors. Leaving Humphrey Bogart and Spencer Tracy off my list almost felt like a crime, but I simply ran out of spots. :-)

Who is your favorite classic movie actor? Your top 10?


Saturday State Post: Classic Movie Actors from New York

In my first post of the year, I explained how my plan to cover all 50 states in my Saturday state post series by the end of last year went terribly awry. In looking up actors and actresses that were born in the state of New York for this post, I realized I wouldn’t have been able to do one a week and finish by the end of the year anyway, so I don’t feel so bad.

I’m telling you, the list of actors from the state of New York is seriously long! Although I won’t be highlighting all of them in detail, I found over 70 names that were potential candidates for this list! I will definitely have to split the state into several posts if I am to cover even a small portion of all that amazing talent. Not only are there tons of names on the list, a few of the stars like Barbara Stanwyck, Gene Tierney, James Cagney, and Humphrey Bogart are personal favorites of mine, so I definitely want to cover all of them plus some of the lesser known stars that also deserve recognition. Continue reading →

White Heat: At the Top of the Greatest Gangster Movies

As much as I love watching old movies, I have to confess that I haven’t spent much time thinking about them lately and therefore haven’t been doing a very good job of keeping up with my blog. Living here in Green Bay Packers country, the last few weeks have mostly been spent in nervous anticipation of the Super Bowl followed by jubilant celebration of their world championship, and that’s pretty much all I was able to think about. I was surprised when I looked at the calendar and realized it had been over two weeks since I last watched a movie, but I guess that’s what happens when you have an all consuming love for your football team, which we certainly do here in Titletown.

Anyway, enough of me boring you with my football talk. :-) Last night I finally got back to my other great love, watching old movies, and to start things off I decided to step outside my comfort zone by watching the movie White Heat (1949), a movie that is often considered to be in both the film noir and gangster film genres, the latter being defined by the American Film Institute (AFI) as “a genre that centers on organized crime or maverick criminals in a twentieth century setting.” Continue reading →