River Wissey Lovell Fuller

Desert Island Films

March 2002

Another reader's selection of memorable movies

I was delighted that Audrey McBride followed my Desert Island Discs' item with her own selections. She also gave her reasons, which I failed to do so full marks to her.

However, there hasn't been any further development on this theme so I thought that I would introduce "Desert Island Films". Eight of these would be allowed plus a film projector, some solar powered batteries and a large white sheet which could be hung up between two palm trees. Then, after the sun had gone down, one could lie back on the beach, drink coconut milk, nibble away at the odd mango or papaya and revel in the nostalgia of one's favourite movies.

My eight films have been chosen either for their music or their humour, or both. I would not want to take anything that was deep or serious - I want a film to keep my spirits up. You will also notice that they are not modern films. That is firstly because I do not think that present day films entertain as much as older ones, and secondly because I come from the older generation.

Anyway, here they are:

1. Young Einstein - A brilliant, zany comedy-cum-musical written, produced, directed, acted and everything else, by the Australian Yahoo Serious.

2. Singing in the Rain - A beautifully choreographed comedy-musical starring Gene Kelly, Donald O'Connor and Debbie Reynolds.

3. Victor Victoria - Julie Andrews and Robert Preston star in this very funny musical in which Preston steals the film (later it transferred to Broadway for a run lasting several years).

4. High Society - Yet another comedy musical, with Bing Crosby, Grace Kelly and Frank Sinatra, with Louis Armstrong and his band stealing the film.

5. Lover come back - The funniest of all the Doris Day/Rock Hudson films in which Tony Randall has a virtuous performance.

6. The Glen Miller Story - A lovely film about music in which I think James Stewart played his finest role. June Allyson was perfect as his wife.

7. The Aristocats - I'm a sucker for good feature length cartoons and this Disney production beats all others in my estimation.

8. The Millionairess - Sophia Loren and Peter Sellers star in this amusing but poignant film, giving great performances.

Well, there they are. I would love to hear other readers' choices of films; it's great fun re-living them, so come on and inundate the editor!

Graham Forster

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