North By Northwest (1959)

North By Northwest is probably Hitchcock’s most fun picture. Rear Window, my favorite, has fun elements, but the brutal homicide–off-camera, granted–at its core is the subject of much graphic byplay. Northwest’s violence, on the other hand, is comic. Even the UN stabbing is bloodless. And sex constantly threatens to overtake the thriller aspects of the […]

Annie Hall (1970)

Annie Hall, Woody Allen’s masterpiece and the funniest movie of the 1970s. And that’s saying a lot when you’re talking about the golden age of American cinema. Some say it hasn’t aged well, but how can that be? Of course, Cary Grant would be completely out of place in even the most finely crafted movie […]

The Philadelphia Story (1940)

The best thing about The Philadelphia Story (aside from the acting ensemble) is that it is that rarest of gems: a truly adult romance from Hollywood’s golden age. Although the end includes the revelation that the previous evening’s revels were innocent, it is preceded by a remarkable series of set pieces in which the terrific […]