Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Cry, Laugh and Sing-along?

Like with last week’s books, how to choose just three favourite movies from so many? So how about one to make me cry, one to make me laugh, and one to sing along to?

The movie where I ALWAYS cry at the end, no matter how many times I watch it, is ‘Apollo 13.’ I know how it ends, I know they get back safely. After all, I watched the whole thing ‘for real’ back in 1970 and I still remember punching the air in relief when Jim Lovell’s voice came over the radio after the agonisingly long radio silence. When I’m watching the movie, though, I always fill up at all the reactions of the family and the flight engineers at Houston (especially Gene Kranz, played by Ed Harris).

The one to make me laugh is ‘Forrest Gump’ – I didn’t see this in the cinema when it first came out, but caught it on television one night, and found myself laughing out loud at so many of the wonderful comments he makes. I then bought the DVD and continue to laugh every time I watch it. Tom Hanks is brilliant!

To sing along to, my choice would be the National Theatre production of ‘Oklahoma’. This was the stage show which first gave me my love of musical theatre (many, many years ago!), and I have seen it countless times on stage (and also the screen version, of course). But Trevor Nunn’s production at the National Theatre is by far and away the best I have ever seen. Not just because of the gorgeous Hugh Jackman and his fabulous singing voice (well, partly!) but also because of the superb interpretation of some of the songs.

Here’s one of the songs I'd join in with!

In about 6 months’ time, however, I would probably exchange this choice for the movie  version of Les Miserables which is my favourite musical ever! I’ve seen it 10 times on stage, in London and Manchester, and have both the 10th and 25th Anniversary concerts on DVD. Sometime last year, my daughter called to tell me it was being made into a movie and said ‘Guess who’s playing Jean Valjean?’ When she told me it was Hugh, I was over the moon. I’ll be first in line to see it when it’s released here next January. Here’s the trailer:


  1. I loved Ed Harris' character in Apollo 13. And Forrest Gump is terrific (life is like a box of chocolates).

  2. Ed Harris was amazing because if you watch the real Gene Kranz during the Apollo 13 near-disaster, Ed got Gene's reactions perfectly.

    Forrest Gump - well, what can you say? Sheer brilliance by Tom Hanks.

  3. I cry every time I watch "Apollo 13". And I agree, Ed Harris gets me the most.

    We saw a stage version of "Oklahoma" at our church once, and I loved it! I still break into song whenever someone mentions that state!

  4. Agree about Ed Harris, Debra.

    If you can get the DVD of the National Theatre production of Oklahoma, I can thoroughly recommend it!

  5. I LOOOVE that version of Oklahoma! Makes me so happy to watch it, every time.

  6. Agree about the NT version of Oklahoma, Jo - the best ever!