Film Files

Because I am a big fan of movies,
I often posted about some of my favorite films.
Here are links to some of those posts…


One of the best things about directing movies,
as opposed to merely writing them,
is that there’s no confusion about
who’s to blame: you are.

– Nora Ephron

I celebrate journalist, novelist, screenwriter, director Nora Ephron
in my May 21, 2019 post called
The Director’s to Blame


We worked hard and fast.
The scenes were long and very concentrated…
The crew really interested because it is a
fascinating story of… It’s funny and exciting
and just rouses you up. Because you
suddenly realize what a tremendous opportunity it is
just to be alive.

– Katharine Hepburn
in her autobiography Me: Stories of My Life
about the movie The Corn is Green’ (1979)

My favorite actor is Katharine Hepburn.
I talk about her ups and downs
in my May 5, 2020 post called…
Unafraid to Fall


“Everyone wants to be Cary Grant—
even I want to be Cary Grant.”

– Cary Grant

I applaud the one and only Cary Grant in one of
my earliest posts, from January 13, 2019, called… The Silver Screen


“This song is so much more than a piece of music.
It has become an anthem…for all of us who’ve ever
had to find strength and beauty
in what makes us different.”

– Zendaya
about the song ‘This is Me’
from The Greatest Showman 
at the Academy Awards Ceremony

March 2018

I highly recommend a 2017 movie musical, The Greatest Showman,
which I talk about in my January 13, 2019 post called… The Silver Screen


** 12 Favorite Female-Directed Movies **
(in chronological order)

A League of Her Own (1992)
directed by Penny Marshall
A road movie, a sports movie, a history lesson, a feminist classic.
And a wonderful ensemble piece about women working together.

Michael (1996)
directed by Nora Ephron
John Travolta plays a memorable archangel,
but the best part is when Andie MacDowell sings ‘I Love Pie.’

The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio (2005)
directed and written by Jane Anderson (based on a memoir by Terry ‘Tuff’ Ryan)
Hero mom, weak father, lots of kids. This one hits close to the bone for me.

Then She Found Me (2007)
directed by Helen Hunt (based on a novel by Elinor Lipman)
This film is funny, Bette Midler’s character is unforgettable, and it’s astoundingly real about parenting.

Cairo Time (2009)
directed by Ruba Nadda
Patricia Clarkson + a travel film = win/win.

Julie & Julia (2009) directed and written by Nora Ephron
Ephron not only directed but produced this and wrote the screenplay.
I’d say if you don’t already love Julia Child, this movie will besot you.

It’s Complicated (2009)
directed & written by Nancy Meyers
This re-watchable film is pure fantasy for fully grown women. And it’s got Steve Martin!

If I Were You (2012)
directed and written by Joan Carr-Wiggin
I flat-out love this one and I don’t think I’ll ever tire of re-watching it.

Learning to Drive (2014)
directed by Isabel Coixet (written by Sarah Kernochan)
I like how just-right the ending of this movie seems. Plus Samantha Bee in a movie! who knew?

The Dressmaker (2015)
directed and co-written by Jocelyn Moorhouse (based on the novel by Rosalie Ham)
Starts with Parisian fashion in small-town Australia and goes…not at all where I expected it to go.

The Intern (2015)
directed & written by Nancy Meyers
We need more movies about women at work. I love this story about a young entrepreneur.

Twinsters (2015)
co-directed by Samantha Futerman and Ryan Miyamoto, written by Samantha Futerman
What a surprise and a delight this documentary is.

** 5 Favorite Cary Grant Movies **

#5 The Grass is Greener (1960)
Not a flawless film. For instance, I can’t really see the appeal of Robert Mitchum. But Jean Simmons is so much fun with her bright-tangerine perfectly-accessorized frocks!

#4 My Favorite Wife (1940)
This film has its problems as well—and yet Irene Dunne is an absolute joy to watch.

#3 The Philadelphia Story (1940)
Here is as perfect a film as can be: Three powerhouse actors, Katharine Hepburn, Jimmy Stewart, Cary Grant—all terrific! And yet—all the best lines go to the newspaper photographer played by Ruth Hussey.

“I was the only photographer
whose camera you didn’t smash.
You were terribly nice about it. You threw it in the ocean.”

– Ruth Hussey as Elizabeth Imbrie
in The Philadelphia Story (1940)

#2 His Girl Friday (1940)

This is a sneaky movie. The title sounds patronizing in three different directions, and the dialog is so blindingly quick and clever that all the unusual bits seem geared to slip right past us. But this is no ordinary boy-wins-back-girl story. This is a woman seduced—not by love for a man—but by passion for her job. A job she’s good at. Very good. (And all the men around her acknowledge it.)

“And that, my friends, is my farewell to the newspaper game!
I’m going to be a woman; not a news-getting machine.
I’m gonna have babies and take care of them and give them
cod liver oil and watch their teeth grow and—and, oh dear,
if I ever see one of them even look at a newspaper,
I’m going to brain ’em!”

– Rosalind Russell as Hildy Johnson
His Girl Friday (1940)

#1 Holiday (1938)
This is my very favorite film, and has been for a very long time. It is funny and appealing and brings up questions of sexism and classism and the ability to define one’s own life. The brother-sister relationship is subtle and splendid. Plus, I love Jean Dixon and Edward Everett Horton as the academic married couple.

“Let’s ring bells!
Let’s send up skyrockets!
…Well, let’s turn on all the lights in the house.”

– Katharine Hepburn as Linda Seton
Holiday (1938)