Thursday, November 02, 2006

Is "Airplane" A Classic Film?

Every year, the National Film Registry adds to the list of American works of art in movies/cartoons/documentary footage etc. singled out as the best and most significant. The list is 425 titles strong and includes everything from "Abbott & Costello Meet Frankenstein" (certainly THEIR greatest work outside of "Who's On First") to the Zapruder film. The complete list is here. But did you know you can vote? The public doesn't have a direct say, but our voice does hold sway: the more people campaing for a particular title, the more the actual voters might put it in. Here's a very short list of some movies that have been nominated but still aren't on the registry. Send an email with your votes to sleg@loc.gov. Here's a link to the nomination page. You can include up to 50 titles, but the fewer the better, I'm sure. And I'm sure prvi8pete will join me in urging everyone to vote for "Airplane." It's a very funny movie, of course, but it's also very influential. Sure, "Kentucky Fried Movie" and others were precursors to it, but "Airplane" helped popularize a very distinctive form of comedy that inspired sequels, knock-offs, TV shows and more. It's rare that any movie can epitomize an entire genre of films and that's exactly what "Airplane" does. Is it a classic film? I say yes. Surely, you agree.

6 comments:

priv8pete said...

I agree. And I can't believe how short that list is. It'll take some time to pick out which ones I want to email for recommendation. It looks like I picked the wrong week to stop sniffing glue...

And don't call me Shirley!

Michael in New York said...

Thsoe are just some of the movies under the "A" ranking that haven't made it yet. A completely random look finds that other movies not included are Airplane, Arthur, Days Of Heaven, Stop Making Sense, Ace in the Hold, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, Grey Gardens, Bull Durham, My Dinner With Andre and Sweet Sweetback's Badasssss Song. Mind you, Shirley, these movies should be towering classics or wildly influential or landmark in some way -- not just good movies you like.

Ed Sikov said...

Surely I disagree. I never liked AIRPLANE.

Michael in New York said...

Ok, and I'm not a big fan of Sweet Sweetback. But isn't it a significant film, for the subject matter and the way it was distributed? And isn't Airplane significant for typifying a certain sub-genre of comedy that was highly popular in the Seventies and Eighties? Can't a movie be not that good but still noteworthy, so that any collection of movies meant to encapsulize American cinema (especially one already stretching towards 500 titles) that doesn't include it will be missing a facet of the movies?

Ed Sikov said...

"Can't a movie be not that good but still noteworthy, so that any collection of movies meant to encapsulize American cinema (especially one already stretching towards 500 titles) that doesn't include it will be missing a facet of the movies?"

I never liked logic.

Michael in New York said...

Sorry, Grasshopper. I'll try not to get so high falutin' next time.