Casablanca, The Hunger, Almost Famous

Teresa Oyos
Community activist diva

I have to go to a classic first. Casablanca , with Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman, is simply the best movie ever made! It makes me sigh every time I see it. Play it again, Sam!Next is a contemporary vampire tale from none other than Tony Scott. The Hunger is the sexiest movie ever made! I love the scene with Catherine Deneuve and Susan Sarandon in bed with the curtains blowing in the wind. David Bowie also stars.

And finally, from Gregory Nava and Anna Thomas is a story about the joys and hardships of three generations of an immigrant family in Mi Familia. Jimmy Smits and Edward James Olmos star. My family took up the whole row at the theater when it first came out. Perfect for those holiday family get-togethers.

(USA) 1943, Warner Home Video

The Hunger
(England) 1983, Warner Home Video

My Family
(USA) 1995, New Line

Terry Alexander
Quality assurance nurse, UCSD HIV Neurobehavioral Research Center

Lawrence Kasdan's The Big Chill brings a group of old college friends together for a funeral. I know everyone in it and all the characters feel like they are my friends. I love the interaction among Kevin Kline, Glenn Close, Jeff Goldblum, William Hurt, Mary Kay Place, and others. I like Cameron Crowe's semi-autobiographical Almost Famous for many of the same reasons I like The Big Chill . It's also very real and is the best coming-of-age movie I've seen.

And finally, a film from this year, Judd Apatow's Knocked Up, which concerns an unwanted pregnancy and the two unlikely people it brings together. It's outrageously funny. And Seth Rogan is hot. You've got to see his bare butt! I wish he were my friend.

The Big Chill
(USA) 1983, Sony Pictures

Almost Famous
(USA) 2000, Dreamworks

Knocked Up (Unrated Widescreen Edition)
(USA) 2007, Universal

Lauren Way
Phlebotomist, UCSD HIV Neurobehavioral Research Center

Come holiday time, nothing's better than to gather the merry band of miscreants that have become my family and celebrate with films celebrating us. Mifune , the third film of the Dogme 95 Manifesto, utilizes bare-bones filmmaking to make the strained relationship between Kresten, his challenged brother, and the live-in caregiver all the more painful and sublime.In Kikujirô, a cantankerous neighbor (Takeshi Kitano) escorts young Masao on a journey to reunite with his mother. Along the way they encounter bikers, Yakuza, and a "Scary Man." There are moments of absurdity and fear, but ultimately a general sense of all being right with the world.

Genghis Blues, the documentary about a blind blues musician traveling to Tuva (just outside Outer Mongolia) to compete in the national throat-singing competition, assembles an unlikely troupe for a fantastical journey that can't help but make you try to kargyraa on your own.

(Denmark/Sweden) 1999, Sony Pictures

Kikujirô no natsu
(Japan) 1999, Sony Pictures

Genghis Blues
(USA) 1999, New Video Group

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