The National Film Registry is a section of the Library of Congress that’s goal is to preserve film culture. Now, the movies selected aren’t supposed to be the best films of all time. That’s not the point. The point of the National Film Registry is to preserve film that affects American culture deeply.
We’ve got some great choices this year. The Matrix, which changed action and science fiction, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, which is a classic, and Dirty Harry (do you feel lucky? Apparently so!) are in the list. There’s also a timely selection in A Christmas Story. But still, we don’t have Die Hard. That’s a damn shame. Here’s the full list, via the LA Times.
“3:10 to Yuma” (1957): Delmar Daves directed this western based on a short story by Elmore Leonard.
“Anatomy of a Murder” (1959): Otto Preminger directed this courtroom thriller that made headlines for its frankness in language and adult themes.
“The Augustas” (1930s-1950s): A 16-minute film by traveling salesman Scott Nixon, who was a member of the Amateur Cinema League, chronicling some 38 streets, storefronts and cities named Augusta.
“A Christmas Story” (1983): Humorist Jean Shepherd narrates this classic holiday comedy based on his memoirs of growing up in Indiana and hoping to receive a Red Ryder BB gun for Christmas.
“The Corbett-Fitzsimmons Title Fight” (1897): Chronicle of the famed boxing match between James J. Corbett — aka “Gentleman Jim” — and Bob Fitzsimmons that was held on St. Patrick’s Day in Carson City, Nev.
“Hours for Jerome: Parts 1 and 2” (1980-82) : Experimental filmmaker Nathaniel Dorsky’s silent tone poem.
“The Kidnappers Foil” (1930s-1950s): Dallas native Melton Barker traveled through the South and Midwest for three decades filming local kids acting, singing and dancing in two-reel films he called “The Kidnappers Foil.” A few weeks after shooting, the townspeople would get a copy of the film for screening at the local theater.
“Kodachrome Color Motion Picture Tests“ (1922): The two-color (greenish blue and red) film was the first publicly demonstrated color film to attract the attention of the film industry.
“A League of Their Own” (1992): Penny Marshall’s box office hit comedy about the All American-Girls Professional Softball League of the 1940s and early 1950s.
“The Matrix” (1999): Andy and Lana — then known as Larry — Wachowski directed this visually groundbreaking sci-fi thriller starring Keanu Reeves and Lawrence Fishburne.
“The Middleton Family at the New York World’s Fair” (1939): Technicolor industrial film produced for the 1939 New York World’s Fair.
“One Survivor Remembers” (1995): Oscar-winning documentary short about Holocaust survivor Gerda Weissmann Klein.
“Parable” (1964): The Protestant Council of New York produced this controversial, acclaimed silent allegorical Christian film for the 1964 New York World’s Fair.
“Samsara: Death and Rebirth of Cambodia” (1990): Ellen Bruno’s Stanford University master’s thesis documents the struggle of the Cambodian people to rebuild their shattered society after Pol Pot’s killing fields.
“Slacker” (1991): Richard Linklater’s indie comedy follows a group of diverse characters over the course of one day in Austin, Texas.
“They Call It Pro Football” (1967): The first feature from NFL Films utilized Telephoto lens and slow-motion to offer a primer on the game.
“The Times of Harvey Milk” (1984): Academy Award-winning documentary about San Francisco’s first openly gay elected city official who was slain in 1978.
“Two-Lane Blacktop” (1971): Director Monte Hellman’s existential road picture.
“Uncle Tom’s Cabin” (1914): This silent adaptation of Harriet Beecher Stowe’s landmark 1852 anti-slavery novel is said to be the first feature-length film that starred an African American actor — Sam Lucas, who had appeared in the 1878 stage version.
“The Wishing Ring; An Idyll of Old England”“ (1914): Maurice Tourneur’s charming cross-class romance.