Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The Best Years of Our Lives

Dir: William Wyler, 1946 (10*)

Best Picture (AA, BAA)
AFI Top 100
This terrific post-war film is one of the great American movies. It's also a brave one, an anti-war film made just after World War II. It concerns a group of three soldiers from different backgrounds who share a military aircraft ride home when returning from the war and become friends; the film shows the difficulties each has adjusting to civilian life after life-changing wartime experiences, and the effect of the war on their relatives. Fredric March won an Oscar for Best Actor (his 2nd); William Wyler for Best Director (his 2nd of 3) and Screenplay, and Harold Russell, a non-actor who lost his hands in the war, won Supporting Actor (and an Honorary Oscar) in a deeply touching role. Everything about this movie is superb, an all-time top 10 for me, and a Top 12 for Orson Welles. This film kept It's a Wonderful Life from winning any AA's. 6 Oscars

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These are the individual film reviews of what I'm considering the best 1000 dvds available, whether they are films, miniseries, or live concerts. Rather than rush out all 1000 at once, I'm doing them over time to allow inclusion of new releases - in fact, 2008 has the most of any year so far, 30 titles in all; that was a very good year for films, one of the best ever.



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