4-Star Films at Amazon

****

B


Babe
Babe is all about the title character, a heroic little pig who's been taken in by the friendly farmer Hoggett (Oscar nominee James Cromwell), who senses that he and the pig share "a common destiny."

Background to Danger
Exciting story of George Raft in the thick of Nazi intrigue in Turkey. With Peter Lorre and Sydney Greenstreet.

Back to the Future
High schooler Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox, during the height of his TV success) is catapulted back to the '50s where he sees his parents in their teens, and accidentally changes the history of how Mom and Dad met.

Bad Day at Black Rock
Spencer Tracy stars as a man who comes to the town of Black Rock and causes the townsfolk to be consumed with fear, suspicion, and murder. Nominated for an Oscar for his screenplay was Millard Kaufman.

Bad Influence
Rob Lowe and James Spader are wonderful in this thriller.

Barcelona
Taylor Nichols (Metropolitan) plays an American living in the Catalonian capital working for a stateside company who is visited by his unctuous cousin (Chris Eigeman), a naval attaché in Barcelona to spin a little public relations for the impending arrival of the fleet amidst some virulent left-wing, anti-American attitude.

Barn Burning
The conflict between father and son is played out on a farm. From William Faulkner.

The Barretts of Wimpole Street
Elizabeth Barrett and Robert Browning fall in love and sparks fly in real life and in their poetry. Starring Norma Shearer, Fredric March, and Charles Laughton.

Barton Fink
There's only one thing stranger than what's going on inside his head. What's going on outside. Cast: John Turturro, John Goodman, Judy Davis.

Bataan
This film shows the bravery of a small patrol of American soldiers in 1942 attempting to blow up a bridge to stop the encroaching Japanese army. Starring Robert Taylor, Thomas Mitchell, and Desi Arnez. Great combat scenes.

Battle Circus
An excellent drama of a doctor in combat during the Korean War. Starring Humphrey Bogart, sweet June Allyson, and Keenan Wynn.

Battle Cry
Action-packed film about Marines in training, in battle, and in love. Based on a Leon Uris novel and starring Van Heflin. Also starring Aldo Ray, Tab Hunter, and Fess Parker.

Battle Hymn
Rock Hudson plays a man of the cloth who returns to military service to train fighter pilots for Korea. Quite a big production. With Martha Hyer and Dan Duryea.

Battle of Britain
Terrific film about British airmen who stopped the Nazi invasion. Starring Michael Caine, Trevor Howard, Laurence Olivier, and Curt Jurgens.

Battle of the Bulge
This movie is the spectacular story of the tank battles of December 1944, when the Nazi Panzer Forces staged an enormous last-minute offensive on the Belgian Front. Starring Henry Fonda, Robert Shaw, Dana Andrews, and Charles Bronson.

Battleground
Van Johnson, John Hodiak, and Ricardo Montalban star in this movie about how American soldiers prove their toughness during Germany's final major offensive, The Battle of the Bulge. Robert Pirosh won an Oscar for his script.

Becoming Colette
About the writer Colette.

The Beachcomber
Based on the story by Somerset Maugham, "The Vessel of Wrath." A missionary nurse saves a drunken Englishman in the Dutch Islands.

Bedknobs and Broomsticks
An elaborate Disney musical production about a witch who helps the British during WW II. With Angela Lansbury. A different kind of war movie, to say the least.

The Beguiled
A textured film about a wounded Civil War soldier (Clint Eastwood) who recuperates in a girls' school. He stirs up passions among the females. This is one of Eastwood's best films.

Being There
Based on Jerzy Kosinski's satirical novel about an illiterate gardener who has lived his entire life behind the walls of a Washington, D.C., house, his only knowledge of the world coming from the TV programs he watches. When his employer and protector dies, he is catapulted into the fast lane of political power.

Belle Epoque
Four sisters try to seduce a Spanish Civil War deserter.

Beloved Infidel
This passionate love story is based on the real-life romance between F. Scott Fitzgerald and Hollywood columnist Sheilah Graham. Starring Gregory Peck and Deborah Kerr.

Ben-Hur
Charlton Heston plays a peace-loving prince of Judea who leads his nation against the wrath of the Romans. Karl Tunberg was nominated for an Oscar for Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium.

Bernice Bobs Her Hair
An ugly duckling is transformed into a beauty. From F. Scott Fitzgerald.

The Best Years of Our Lives
This is a story of three servicemen who return from World War II and begin to piece their lives back together. With Myrna Loy, Frederick March, and Dana Andrews. Adapted from MacKinlay Kantor's Glory for Me, a novel in verse. The Oscar for Screenplay went to Robert E. Sherwood.

Big
Big is the story of a 12-year-old boy who wishes he were older, and wakes up one morning as a 30-year-old man.

The Big Easy
Directed by Jim McBride (Great Balls of Fire!) and released in 1987, this New Orleans mystery-romance features Dennis Quaid and costar Ellen Barkin as sexy adversaries on opposite sides of a police scandal.

Big Noise
Laurel and Hardy star as janitors who accept a job to protect a new bomb.

Birdy
Based on William Wharton's transcendent novel of the same name, this film is about many things: friendship, war, and, of course, birds. The framing device is an effort by a horribly scarred combat soldier (Nicolas Cage) to break through to his best friend, Birdy (Matthew Modine), hospitalized after seemingly being driven mad by fighting in the Vietnam War.

The Black Fox
Narrated by Marlene Dietrich, this excellent documentary traces the rise and fall of Hitler and his Third Reich. It won the Oscar for best documentary feature.

The Black Stallion
A young boy survives a shipwreck and is stranded on a deserted island with a graceful black stallion, with whom the boy develops an almost empathic friendship. After being rescued and returning home, the two make a winning team as jockey and lightning-fast racehorse under the tutelage of a passionate trainer, played by Mickey Rooney in an Oscar-nominated role.

Blaze
This movie tells the story of the latter years of Earl Long, a flamboyant politician. Cast: Paul Newman and Lolita Davidovich.

Bleak House
The classic story of decay and corruption in 19th Century England.

Blood on the Sun
A rebellious American newspaper reporter in Tokyo, James Cagney, uncovers the plot to blow up Pearl Harbor.

Blow Out
Brian De Palma's 1981 thriller is something of a homage to Michelangelo Antonioni's masterful Blowup, though there are hints of Francis Ford Coppola's paranoia-inducing Conversation sprinkled throughout. John Travolta plays a sound-effects man who witnesses what appears to be a tragic car accident killing a presidential candidate. The audio tape he happened to be recording at that moment (adding to his collection of natural sounds), however, suggests but doesn't prove that a murderous conspiracy is afoot. Trying to tease a shred of evidence from murky doubt, Travolta's character turns to a hooker (Nancy Allen) for help and stumbles into a web of evil spun by a right-wing kook (John Lithgow).

Blue Sky
Jessica Lange deserves three cheers for her performance as an army wife in the early 1960s. Sensuous and unpredictable, Lange bridles at the restrictions in her life and is constantly seeking attention. Tommy Lee Jones is the nuclear engineer who adores her, but is just as passionate toward his career.

The Blues Brothers
After building up the duo's popularity through popular recordings and several performances on Saturday Night Live, John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd--as "legendary" Chicago blues brothers Jake and Elwood Blues--took their act to the big screen in this action-packed hit from 1980. As Jake and Elwood struggle to reunite their old band and save the Chicago orphanage where they were raised, they wreak enough good-natured havoc to attract the entire Cook County police force.

Bob Roberts
Written and directed by actor Tim Robbins (who also plays the title role), this 1992 mock documentary about an upstart candidate for the U.S. Senate is smart, funny, and scarily prescient in its foreshadowing of the Republican revolution of 1994.

Born on the Fourth of July
Powerful and realistic story of Vietnam veteran Ron Kovic, who joined the Marines as a gung-ho recruit and came back home paralyzed. He then endured an ordeal of physical and mental rehabilitation before becoming an antiwar activist. Writers: Oliver Stone and Ron Kovik, from the memoir by Ron Kovik. Stars: Tom Cruise, Willem Dafoe, Caroline Kava, and Raymond J. Barry.

The Bostonians
A lush drama of the feminist movement in post-Civil War New England. From Henry James.

Breakfast at Tiffany's
Holly Golightly (Audrey Hepburn) wants to marry a millionaire but falls for the writer (George Peppard) who lives next door. Directed by Blake Edwards.

The Bridge at Remagen
George Segal and other Allies defend a bridge during WW II. Also starring Robert Vaughn and Ben Gazzara.

Broadcast News
A funny and poignant love triangle develops between a TV producer (Holly Hunter), an intelligent reporter (Albert Brooks), and a not-so-smart anchorman (William Hurt).

Broadway Danny Rose
A Woody Allen gem.

Broken Arrow
James Stewart stars as a frontiersman with an Indian wife who meets opposition when he defends the rights of the Apaches. With Jeff Chandler and Debra Paget. Albert Maltz was nominated for an Oscar for his screenplay.

A Bronx Tale
Chazz Palminteri wrote the script for this excellent story of an Italian American boy (Lillo Brancato) who grows up in the 1960s caught between the strong influences of his blue-collar, straight- arrow father (Robert De Niro) and a Mafia chieftain (Palminteri) who is his all-purpose mentor.

The Buccaneers
Four lovely American women look for romance in London. From Edith Wharton.

Bugles in the Afternoon
Ray Milland is branded a coward during the Civil War and must prove his manhood at Little Big Horn. Also starring Forrest Tucker and George Reeves.

Bull Durham
A fan who has an affair with one minor-league baseball player each season meets an up-and-coming pitcher and the experienced catcher assigned to him.

Bullets Over Broadway
Directed by Woody Allen. Cast: John Cusack, Jack Warden, Chazz Palminteri, Jennifer Tilly, Rob Reiner, Mary-Louise Parker, Dianne Wiest, Harvey Fierstein, Tracey Ullman.

The Bunker
Anthony Hopkins plays Hitler in this adaptation by John Gay of James P. O'Donnell's book about the Third Reich's final days. Hopkins won an Emmy for this role.

The Burmese Harp
Private Shoji Yasui volunteers for a mission and becomes obsessed with desire to bury war dead. First-rate anti-war film from Japan.


4-Star Films

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