1,001 Movies – Week 66

“The Freshman” to “Full Metal Jacket”


The Freshman (1925) – “Step right up and call me Speedy!” College films were all the rage when Harold Lloyd took up the challenge and made his own – a slyly satirical jab at the phenomena. Not his funniest film, but his most linear work. The scenes on the football field are some of the most exciting of its kind ever filmed and still can elicit screams from the audience. (Really! It’s happened every time I’ve seen it in a theater.) (GS)

Fright Night (1985) – This is an entertaining horror story about a teenage boy who enlists the help of a late night TV horror movie-host (the always wonderful Roddy McDowell) to help him deal with his neighbor (the oh-so sexy Chris Sarandon) who he is convinced is a vampire. (GS)

The Frighteners (1996) – Peter Jackson directed this ghost story film starring Michael J. Fox, in a role that is his best since Back to the Future. There are some wonderfully inventive special effects and astonishing make-up (especially on John Astin) from Rick Baker. Funny, scary and romantic, this is one of my guilty pleasure favorites. (GS)

From Here to Eternity (1953) – Tough, resonant and very popular movie set on the eve of Pearl Harbor. Most remembered these days for the infamous and influential “beach scene” with Burt Lancaster and Deborah Kerr frolicking in the surf. Great support cast – Frank Sinatra is particularly impressive (how he got the part is the subject of legends and plotlines in The Godfather!); Montgomery Clift is terrific too. (KT)

Full Metal Jacket (1987) – One of the few flawless films ever made, I can watch this one over and over again. So many different stories going on here, it is part of my perfect trifecta of Vietnam movies (Apocalypse Now and Platoon being the others) that point out the absurdities of war. The first part deals with the travails of boot camp, moves on to characters being eased into the situations, and wraps with some heinous violence in a situation where the high command didn’t seem to want to help. The Mickey Mouse Club theme ending still gets me. (SB)


Originally published in Raspberry World – Volume 2, Issue 1 (June/July 2007)

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