ANDREW COLLINS: FILM OF THE DAY
This remains a watershed in computer animation, in terms of technical achievement and emotional depth, and as much a feather in Pixar’s cap as Toy Story. Up centres on the knotty but ultimately heart-warming relationship between crotchety old man and grown-up fan of exploration Carl Fredrickson (voiced by Ed Asner) and can-do, guileless boy scout Russell (Jordan Nagai), who go on a wondrous odd-couple journey when the former’s condemned house is airlifted by party balloons to South America. Directed by Monsters, Inc’s Pete Docter, Up went backwards in many ways, with a more simplistic, blocky character design — its human characters feel as if they have been inflated with a foot pump — but simultaneously pushed things forward in terms of raw sentiment. In a montage early on, we experience human mortality in a way that causes us to catch a breath (and shed a tear), and the gag-filled adventure story that follows is all the richer for it.
The Sound of Music ★★★★★
The timeless musical starring Julie Andrews must top a record number of guilty pleasure lists. Love it or hate it, there’s no denying a lot of people went to see Andrews climb every mountain and sing about her favourite things. In terms of bums on seats, it’s the third most-watched film in history.
Forrest Gump ★★★★
Tom Hanks is the innocent everyman who, thanks to nifty special effects, meets everyone from John Lennon to JFK in Robert Zemeckis’s heart-warming comedy drama.
The Godfather, Part II ★★★★★
This breathtaking gangster sequel is widely acknowledged as one of the greatest films ever made (perhaps even eclipsing its predecessor). Al Pacino stars as the new head of the “family” and chillingly convincing he is, too.
The Bourne Identity ★★★★
The great spy trilogy (ignore the Legacy) starts here with Matt Damon waking up with no knowledge of who he is, where he is, and what he’s capable of. Light blue touch paper and stand well back.