Tuesday, February 19, 2008

My Favorite Progressive Films

I am accepting Progressive Nashville's challenge to answer the Center for American Progress's top 25 progressive films. I came up with 25, some of which are listed in CAP's list, some of which are not. My list bears toward the populist end of progressive films.
  • To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)
  • Norma Rae (1979)
  • Grapes of Wrath (1940)
  • Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)
  • Gandhi (1982)
  • Dr. Strangelove (1964)
  • American Madness (1932)
  • Ox-Bow Incident (1943)
  • Cry Freedom (1987)
  • All Quiet on the Western Front (1930)
  • High Noon (1952)
  • Intolerance (1916)
  • Schindler's List (1993)
  • Brazil (1985)
  • Sounder (1972)
  • The Milagro Beanfield War (1988)
  • The Manchurian Candidate (1962)
  • All the President's Men (1976)
  • Chinatown (1974)
  • Kramer vs. Kramer (1979)
  • Guess Who's Coming to Dinner (1967)
  • Easy Rider (1969)
  • All the King's Men (1949)
  • Network (1976)
  • Reds (1981)
Two of these movies score high on my list--High Noon and All the King's Men--for the primary reason that John Wayne declared them "un-American" and "un-patriotic." Wayne turned down the the lead role in King's Men and then lost the Best Actor Academy Award for his role in the Sands of Iwo Jima to the actor who took his place, Broderick Crawford. I imagine that was sweet for the makers of King's Men.


UPDATE: While my list fans out chronologically, there are some more recent honorable mentions that could have easily made the list.
  • Dances with Wolves (1991)
  • A League of Their Own (1992)
  • Glory (1989)
  • Kingdom of Heaven (2005)
  • Thelma & Louise (1991)

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