Staff Picks

What Makes a Film Classic?

"What is a classic film?"

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, classic means "serving as a standard of excellence: of recognized value".

But who determines if something is “a standard of excellence” or “of recognized value”?

Does a sterile governing body decree which films should be considered classic?

Or is it more of a subjective, organic question: can we determine our own classic movies?

And if the latter question is true, it reveals a fascinating avenue – if we are responsible for determining our collection of classic films, how do we select them and what does that say about us?!

So, I ask you, dear reader, what is a classic film?

And perhaps more importantly, why do you consider them a classic?

We have a Classic Film display on the 3rd floor of the library. Come by and check it out next time you are in the library and help us by displaying your choices of classic films!

You can also comment below on your ideas of what makes a film a classic.

My list of classic movies are films that I've enjoyed repeatedly, and whose quotes come to mind in various life experiences.

Check them out - and remember, Put ... the Candle ... Back!:

poster of Back to the Future

Back to the Future

"Are you telling me you built a time machine ... out of a DeLorean?!"

poster of The 'Burbs

The 'Burbs

- "Ray isn't coming out of his room until he resembles the man I married."

- "Come on Carol, We don't have that kind of time!"

poster of Clue


- "But he was your second husband. Your first husband also disappeared!"

- "Well, that was his job. He was an illusionist."

- "But he never RE-appeared!"

- "He wasn't a very good illusionist."

poster of the Fellowship of the Ring

The Fellowship of the Ring

- "I wish the Ring had never come to me. I wish none of this had happened.

- "So do all who live to see such times; but that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us. There are other forces at work in this world, Frodo, besides the will of evil."

poster for Miracle on 34th Street

Miracle on 34th Street

- "You go on back in there and tell them that you rule there is no Santy Claus. Go on. But if you do, remember this: you can count on getting just two votes, your own and that district attorney's out there."

- "The District Attorney's a Republican."

poster of Shawshank Redemption

The Shawshank Redemption

"I guess it comes down to a simple choice. Get busy living or get busy dying."

poster of Young Frankenstein

Young Frankenstein

"You have to remember that a worm ... with very few exceptions ... is not a human being."

comments powered by Disqus