I was surprised to see that many of my favourite films are actually quite violent -- not just my beloved Asian fightfilms but Hollywood movies as well...I always thought I was more of a psychological drama person; but I suppose violence can be quite dramatic too, can't it?
Some of these films and me have a history. Take Cat On A Hot Tin Roof, e.g.: I've seen this film more times than I care to remember, and never by choice to begin with. However, for some time in the late 80s/early 90s, it seemed to always be the one thing on the telly in the wee small hours that wasn't TellSell or the worst kind of soft pr0n imaginable. And after a while, I began to really get into it. Burl Ives's Big Daddy makes me smile, Elizabeth Taylor's Maggie makes me admire her, and Paul Newman's blue blue eyes make me go weak at the knees.
The Sound of Music makes me think of my childhood, when my mum took us to see it a couple of times (there was a cinema in my hometown that ran it for 25 years from when it was first released, and didn't show anything else), and Jesus Christ Superstar reminds me of my schooldays, when for years our Easter break was preluded by it. Since then, Jesus has always had the face of Ted Neeley in my imagination.
Thrillers and horror movies tend to give me nightmares, and for years, I've avoided seeing them like the plague. The first time I broke this habit, was on a night crossing to England in 1993 (this was before cheap airlines made flying a better alternative), and the film that was shown was Bram Stoker's Dracula. What swayed me was that my fellow travellers swore to me hand-on-heart that it wasn't in the least bit scary and that they would warn me when to close my eyes, and the fact that Gary Oldman was in it. I love Gary Oldman. He's by far my favourite actor.
Amadeus is a film I adore. I was already a fan of Mozart when the film was released, but afterwards, I was doubly so...and it also led me to add some of Salieri's music to my -pitifully small- collection of classical music. Tom Hulce and F. Murray Abraham give the best performances of their careers in this movie, and I can happily watch it again and again and again...preferably in the days leading up to Christmas.
Which reminds me: I'm missing another of my favourite films here -- Frank Capra's 1946 It's A Wonderful Life, starring Jimmy Stewart.