50 Best Movies of 2009

With the Academy Awards just behind us, perhaps it's time to review and queue praised films of 2009. Not sure what movies were released in 2009? Moviefone released the 50 Best Movies of 2009 this past December. Not all movies listed are available on DVD yet, but here are a few personal favorites: 

Coco Chanel

Coco Chanel

I recently watched the movie Coco Avant Chanel featuring Audrey Tautou as Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel. In the past I have read a few biographies on Coco Chanel and was surprised by her many quirks. One that particularly stands out in my mind is that she often fabricated her life story in a way that gave her the power to leave out the parts that just didn’t quite fit into the vision she wanted for herself. One has to admire that she was a woman that came from nothing and carved out her own successful path in life, not to mention her genius sense of fashion.

Happy Birthday, William H. Macy!

william h. macyWilliam H. Macy has a birthday coming up this week and it got me thinking of how many movies he has been in over the years that I really enjoyed. Ever since first seeing him in the Coen brothers’ Fargo, I’ve been impressed by his talent and his sometimes unusual choices.

Mer’s Happy B-day William H.

The Oscars and Women's History Month

The two subjects in the title of this blog entry have more than a little in common this morning. For the first time in the history of the Academy Awards – 82 years! – a woman won for Best Director. Kathryn Bigelow took home the Oscar for Best Director for The Hurt Locker, the drama about a bomb unit in wartime Iraq. The Hurt Locker was also named Best Picture.

If you’d like to check out some other work by this director…

The Academy Award for Best Picture

            There always seems to be a lot of buzz about the Best Picture Oscar.


Remakes That You Didn’t Know Were Remakes … Or Maybe You Did

                  Hollywood is always doing remakes. Sometimes they’re sneaky about it.  



Kathryn Grayson (1922-2010)

The lovely Kathryn Grayson died last week at the age of 88. Grayson was a mainstay of MGM in the 1950s, playing the lead in several of the studio’s best musicals. She made her movie debut in Andy Hardy’s Private Secretary, part of the series starring Mickey Rooney. Her beautiful soprano voice was showcased in classic movies such as Anchors Aweigh, opposite Gene Kelly.

New DVDs Newsletter

Our HCPL @ The Movies newsletter has been retired as of January. Now we bring you new newsletter which will highlight new DVDs in our collection. The newsletter will come out every month on the 22nd. Use this form to sign up by checking "New DVDs," entering your email address at the bottom, and clicking Submit.

You can still see an archive of past HCPL @ The Movies issues on our site.

Those Who Show Up

As I was considering movies and television series to commemorate Black History Month, I realized that I gravitate toward movies about everyday people. There are numerous references to people like Frederick Douglass and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and we should remember their strength and courage. But there are men and women who are not so well-known and should be remembered as well. People who took a step toward righting wrongs and improving the lives of everyone. These movies are based on true stories of those who worked for the rights and dignity of themselves and others.

"And the Oscar goes to..."

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced the nominations for the 82nd Awards – otherwise known as Oscars -- this morning. For the first time since 1943, there are more than five movies nominated for Best Picture.

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