Thoughts on AFI’s 10 Top 10

Purely by chance, I came across last night’s airing on CBS of AFI’s 10 Top 10, aka Summer’s Here and This Oughta Kill Time Until Survivor Starts Up Again.  The gimmick here was that rather than lumping the so-called greatest movies into one list, they were broken into genres.  The categories for this list of lists were animation, fantasy, science fiction, sports, westerns, gangsters, mystery, romantic comedies, courtroom dramas, and epics.  And I got some problems here.

First, notice anything missing?  I’ll give you a hint – it rhymes with COMEDY.  So right away, I have a major issue with AFI.  I mean, did courtroom drama really merit its own category?  There are a lot of great movies that got overlooked because they aren’t romantic comedies and they couldn’t shoehorn them into another genre (Caddyshack as a sports movie?  Really?!?).

Second problem – once again AFI reveals its disdain for modern filmmaking.  There are way too many ancient movies represented for my tastes (“Dear AFI – There are too many old movies nowadays.  Please eliminate three.  P.S. I am not a crackpot”).  The years of the #1 movie in each genre are, respectively, 1937, 1939, 1968, 1980, 1956, 1972, 1958, 1931, 1962, and 1962.  Are we seriously to believe that no romantic comedy in the last 77 years has surpassed City Lights?

Another problem – no way should the animation list include CGI movies.  Let them have their own category if you want, but in my mind it’s just not the same thing.  It would be like compiling a list of the best photographs ever and throwing 3-D ones in.  Yeah yeah, I know that it takes a lot of skill to make a computer-animated movie, but I’ll always consider it cheating.

That’s it for now, but I’m sure I’ll think of more.  And get off my damn lawn!

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