Growing up, my family had a certain set of movies that we enjoyed. When I got married, my husband introduced me to a whole new set of movies that I would never have chosen. As I marvel at the melding of our movie tastes, I often think "How was this movie out there and I never knew about it?" Now that I am a mother, I am always on the look out for entertaining, enlightening movies that our family can watch together. Here are a few that I suggest to you.
These are all movies that I find cheerful or uplifting in some way. I like to watch them when I am feeling a little down.
You've Got Mail, starring Tom Hanks ans Meg Ryan. I didn't like it that much when I first saw it. After 9/11 I was feeling a little distraught and I decided to watch this movie. It helped, for some reason. I watched it a lot in the weeks that followed that tragedy. It still cheers me up. It does have a few aspects that are not appropriate (like the characters living with their boyfriend/girlfriend) but there are no "fast forward" parts.
Support Your Local Sheriff, starring James Garner. This is a western comedy. I really enjoy this movie and my 10 year old son thinks it is hilarious. It is quite clean and while there is some threat of violence, it is not scary. (So if you don't want your kids to see guns, this isn't the movie for you.)
Follow That Dream, starring Elvis Presley. This is a very cute, funny movie, although it might be a little slow for kids. It has a lot of sweet humor. There are a few mildly suggestive scenes and there is some threat of violence from mobsters who run an illegal casino.
McLintock, starring John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara. This is western but it is very funny. There is a slightly serious undertone related to Native American issues of the time period. There are a few scenes with fighting and even a spanking scene that would never be allowed in today's movies. It has some very good messages about life and marriage.
The Thrill of it All, starring James Garner and Doris Day. This is about a stay-at-home mom who gets a job and gets over her head. This would be such a flop today but I appreciate that women really did choose their families over their careers once upon a time.
The Sound of Music, starring Julie Andrews. I know. Your are thinking that I really didn't need to actually tell you this was a great movie but, just for the record, it is wonderful. It is a musical and has some serious parts and some slow parts but I love every bit of it! (And so do my kids!)
Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, starring Jane Powell and Howard Keel. This is a musical comedy. It may not be to everyone's taste. My brothers used to imagine themselves in this film. It is classic old-Hollywood musical. I love Howard Keel's voice. I could listen to him all day.
Singin' In The Rain, starring Gene Kelly and Debbie Reynolds. This is one of my all-time favorite movies. It takes place during the transition from silent to "talking" pictures. It is funny and educational (if you care about film history). My kids like it, too.
While You Were Sleeping, starring Sandra Bullock. Another absolute favorites. It takes place during Christmas so it kind of feels like a holiday movie but I watch it all year long. It has a few "grown-up" comments but is very clean and sweet. It is one of those movies that makes me happy!
I guess that is a nice list for now. I hope you have a chance to watch some of these wonderful movies. Check your local library.