Saturday, March 12, 2011

"I Liked that Movie"

When I was a kid we watched a lot of old movies. AMC (American Movie Classics) was one of the channels that we seemed to always have on. As a result I grew to know most of the stars of the 30's and 40's as well as many, many of the classics of the Golden Age of Movies.

We limit screen time a lot more than my parents did but I still like to introduce some of these classic movies to my kids. I throw them into the mix now and again. My kids almost always complain because they want to watch Star Wars or Harry Potter for the 100th time. My kids are rather skeptical about new movies. I have to convince them that I know how to pick winners.

Tonight we decided to watch a movie and I got to choose. Or perhaps I should say I insisted that I choose. And I picked Meet Me In St. Louis. My sister and I used to make fun of the hair styles in this movie and usually fast forwarded through some of the songs but I thought it would be a good one to introduce to my kids because the story takes place in 1904 which is the time period we are studying. Not that it is exactly true to the turn of the century styles, there are some 1940's that creep in for sure! but I thought it would give them a taste of what life would be like at that time. I think it did the trick. They were glued to the set and watched the entire film (even the songs I wanted and itched to fast forward through but didn't). And at the end of the film Henry turned to me and said "I liked that Movie".  I told him that I knew he would and that I can almost always pick a winner. 
A few weeks ago, on the drive to Grandma's house, I made my kids watch Seven Brides for Seven Brothers. They hadn't ever actually seen it but you can't help but be familiar with it if you spend any time at Grandma's house. Aunt Julie loves this movie and plays it quite often, between showings of Back to the Future or Home Alone.  Seven Brides is one of those shows I think that I know every line of dialogue, every note of music and can picture every facial expression. I hadn't seen it in years but could still sing along to all the songs as we traveled down to road to Grandma's house.  My kids laughed and giggled all the way through it. They especially loved the big fight in the middle where the brothers knock down the barn that they are supposed to be helping to raise.
It makes me happy to know that my kids enjoy these films. We don't spend a whole lot of time watching movies and t.v. but these classics are such a part of my history it would be hard not to share.  I think I am going to try a Fred and Ginger movie next.  Those are in black and white so may be a little harder to sell to the kids. But who can pass on Swing Time or Top Hat. There is always Thoroughly Modern Millie. All great films that take place in the time period we are studying. We can count this as history right?


Kodelle said...

I love those old movies, especially musicals. I grew up with a lot of them as well. I've seen all the old Disney and John Wayne movies. I love the Crosby and Hope movies. Anything with Fred Astaire, Errol Flynn, Judy Garland . . . I could go on. We love watching old movies on Sunday after church; think Singin' in the Rain and Old Yeller. The girls love it.

Bibliophile said...

There are some old movies that I never tire of watching, ilke "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers" and "The Sound of Music." They are nearly always good...I just thought of a good one: "The Shop Around the Corner" with Jimmy Stewart. Good tale, with remakes made by Judy Garland and again with Tom Hanks: "You've Got Mail." The stories never really get old.