Requested by @bjnovak
Took "classic" broadly: 7 old ones, 3 newer ones. Soooooooo many also-rans.
  1. The Apartment
    Billy. Wilder. Nobody wrote better. I could put Some Like It Hot on this list too, but I prefer Shirley MacLaine/Fran Kubelik to Marilyn Monroe/Sugar Kowalczyk.
  2. Wages of Fear
    The scariest, most suspenseful movie I have ever seen.
  3. Brief Encounter
    David Lean at his best. Two middle aged people overcome by each other. Immediacy of feeling cuts through any stodginess.
  4. The Red Shoes
    This is a yearly rewatch for me, and was also (with It Happen One Night, which also shd be on this list) one of my earliest memories
  5. Letter to Three Wives
    A wild card pick, but under its old fashioned clothes lies some fascinating lingerie. Rare & stunning performance by Linda Darnell. Especially if you love All About Eve, worth a look.
  6. To Be Or Not To Be
    Carole Lombard is my queen and Ernst Lubitsch is my king. I'd also put Shop Around The Corner on this list if I hadn't already referenced it.
  7. Notorious
    The foundation of @mandi and my friendship was our mutual appreciation of this most perfect Hitchcock film. Ingrid Bergman's acting is tuned to a celestial frequency.
  8. All That Jazz
    Maybe my favorite movie of all time. Rigorous, imaginative, personal to the point of discomfort. The best use of stairs in a movie bar none (put your hand down, Gone With the Wind)
  9. Boogie Nights
    PTA can do whatever the fuck he wants with the medium now, because he made a perfect film in his second at bat.
  10. The Godfather
    Parts 1 and 2. Our American opera. Period. The end.