The Kentucky Theatre's Summer Classics Series will truly live up to its name this summer with a lineup of 15 movies, most of which are indisputable classics. The list includes a strong reminder of what a banner year 1939 was for cinema and that 1960 wasn't bad either. There's also a movie I hate to say came out when I was in high school -- maybe we children of the '80s are just becoming "classic."
The series runs May 28 to Sept. 3 with all showings at 1:30 and 7:15 p.m. each day and all seats $3. Here's the lineup:
May 28: Citizen Kane (1941) -- Is it, as many critics contend, the greatest movie ever?
June 4: City Lights (1931) -- Charlie Chaplin as his signature character, The Tramp, in a beautiful story with an ending many consider the best in film history.
June 11: Gone with the Wind (1939) -- Great timing. GWTW finally comes to the Summer Classics Series right after Actors Guild of Lexington's production of Moonlight and Magnolias, which is about the writing of the script for the movie.
June 18: Psycho (1960) -- Do you hear screeching violins now?
June 25: The Wizard of Oz (1939) -- I said it before: You have not seen the arrival in Oz until you've seen it on the big screen.
July 2: Back to the Future (1985) -- Honey! Fire up the Delorean.
OK, my fellow children of the Reagan decade, here's the question: What other movies of our youth can now be considered classics? Please comment.
July 9: Lost Horizon (1937) -- If you haven't seen a movie on this list, it's probably this one. Frank Capra's film about the lost world of Shangri-La is a wonderful journey.
July 16: Spartacus (1960) -- All together: "I'm Spartacus."
July 23: Casablanca (1942) -- Another great ending, and a movie that never gets old.
Aug. 6: Swiss Family Robinson (1960) -- You've seen Nim's Island, now see one of its inspirations.
Aug. 13: The Magnificent Seven (1960) -- The American remake of Akira Kurosawa's The Seven Samurai (1954) has tough guys Charles Bronson and Steve McQueen and others defending a Mexican village against more than 100 marauders.
Aug. 20: The Philadelphia Story (1940) -- The witty repartee of this high society comedy inspired George Clooney in making Leatherheads.
Aug. 27: The War of the Worlds (1953) -- Can classic mid-20th Century sci-fi be more satisfying than Spielberg's 2005 spectacle?
Sept. 3: West Side Story (1961) -- Natalie Wood stars in one of the best screen adaptations of a musical ever.