Tuesday, November 8, 2011

My Top 50 Musicals

In honor of the impending conclusion of the Wonders in the Dark Top 70 Musicals Countdown, hosted and championed by the amazing Sam Juliano (who so graciously invited me to submit two posts to the countdown), I've decided to post my own Top 50 Musicals. I spent a good chunk of my summer catching up on all things musical, and both revisiting some old favorites and seeing many musicals I had never seen before, seeing 28 musicals in all. I also participated daily in the comments at the site and really enjoyed the banter and the education that went along with the countdown. What did I learn? I learned that I enjoy musicals much more than I ever thought I did and I'm far more educated now in the subject than 6 months ago. I've still got some learning to do. My exposure to Opera films and some foreign musicals is not as good as it could be. My own personal issues with Maurice Chevalier is also somewhat of a detractor on several films as well. But, all in all, I feel pretty proud of my own top 50. I will say that I think it's a mix of traditional and accepted classics, some different choices, as well as some campy and/or guilty pleasures. Let me know what you think!

I should start with what my own definition of a "Musical" is, just so we're all clear:

"A film that uses music, dance, or song to conceptually further the plot, emotions, character development or general impression of the film when said music, dance or song is performed or perceived to be performed and is considered to be a main crux of the film."

1. The Sound of Music (1965)
2. Singin' in the Rain (1952)
3. The Wizard of Oz (1939)
4. Swing Time (1936)
5. Cabaret (1972)
6. A Star is Born (1954)
7. A Hard Day's Night (1964)
8. Meet Me in St. Louis (1944)
9. 42nd Street (1933)
10. The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1964)
11. An American in Paris (1951)
12. West Side Story (1961)
13. Moulin Rouge! (2001)
14. Mary Poppins (1964)
15. Beauty and the Beast (1991)
16. Funny Girl (1968)
17. On the Town (1949)
18. The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975)
19. Fiddler on the Roof (1971)
20. Gold Diggers of 1933 (1933)
21. Easter Parade (1948)
22. The Music Man (1962)
23. The Band Wagon (1953)
24. Top Hat (1935)
25. Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (1954)
26. Yellow Submarine (1968)
27. Once (2006)
28. Oliver! (1968)
29. Dancer in the Dark (2000)
30. Funny Face (1957)
31. The Red Shoes (1949)
32. Fantasia (1940)
33. Yankee Doodle Dandy (1942)
34. The Smiling Lieutenant (1931)
35. Kiss Me Kate (1953)
36. The Little Mermaid (1989)
37. Footlight Parade (1933)
38. Coal Miner's Daughter (1980)
39. Oklahoma! (1955)
40. Annie (1982)
41. My Fair Lady (1964)
42. The Blue Angel (1930)
43. Amadeus (1984)
44. White Christmas (1954)
45. Pinocchio (1940)
46. Grease (1978)
47. Cabin in the Sky (1943)
48. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937)
49. Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (1971)
50. Lili (1953)


Mette said...

I haven't seen many musicals (except if you call all Hindi films that have song and dance "musicals"), but absolutely love them. They're just me, I love dancing, I love music and I love films. My Top 3 would be Moulin Rouge, The Sound of Music and SIngin' in the Rain, but I don't know in which order.

Jon said...

Hi Mette!

Thanks for your comment. I haven't seen many Hindi films, so I guess we both have some learning to do! Your 3 favorite musicals are all great choices! All very different styles represented among those three as well!

Catherine Short said...

Yay for White Christmas sneaking in there ;-) Glee did a West Side Story themed episode (Dad now fast forwards just to the musical numbers) which sparked Jordan's interest in watching it! I also need to watch Funny Face - its on my instant queue.

Sound of Music would be my #1 as well.

Jon said...

Hi Catherine! Thanks for stopping by. You have quite influenced this list in ways I never knew. Many parts of Fiddler and The Music Man were familiar after I realized you used to watch them I think!