June 21, 2007, - 2:07 pm

American Movies in Our Embassies for Foreigners: My List & Yours

By Debbie Schlussel
My friend Jaz McKay–on whose KNZR-Bakersfield radio show I appear every Thursday at 1:05 p.m. Pacific–sent me this editorial from Human Events:

Top Ten Movies We’d Like to Screen in US Embassies
A June 2 LA Times report says that Rep. Diane Watson (D-La La Land) wants to use your tax dollar to rescue America’s image abroad by stocking the libraries of our embassies abroad with movies about the United States and let the local population have access to them.
According to that report, Rep. Watson wants to ship only wholesome movies to our embassies, such as “Lassie Come Home,” “National Velvet” and “Meet Me in St. Louis.” . . .
Here’s the HUMAN EVENTS Top Ten list of movies we’d like to see US embassies screening. If foreign nations thought of us in terms of the characters portrayed in them, the world would be a better place. And we would like them to be dubbed in the language of the host country. If for no other reason than we’d like to find out who the State Department would hire to dub the voices of John Wayne and Clint Eastwood.
1. True Grit
2. 1776
3. The Blues Brothers
4. Smokey and the Bandit
5. Dirty Harry (Sudden Impact)
6. How the West was Won
7. Die Hard
8. Rocky
9. The Right Stuff

As I’ve said time and again, I don’t believe we need to put one second’s thought into worrying what nations around the world think of us. We’ve worried far too much about that. If we’re tough and worry about our country, not our enemies, then other countries will fear and respect us. Right now, they laugh at how we worry about how they will think of us.
I also disagree with Human Events on the State Department hiring Clint Eastwood, since he’s become a complete anti-war lefty and is no longer the guy who once played “Dirty Harry.” And I don’t get why they picked “Smoky” and “Blues Brothers.” But here’s my list (I cheated–because I couldn’t keep it to 10, I have 15 on my list):

1. Miracle
2. The Right Stuff
3. 1776
4. Rocky
5. Saving Private Ryan
6. The Ritchie Boys
7. United 93
8. Red Dawn
9. The Pursuit of Happyness
10. Rescue Dawn
11. The Great Raid
12. Brian’s Song
13. Manchurian Candidate (so they can see that not every democrat–small “d”–is really a democrat)
14. Not Without My Daughter
15. Delta Force (regularly panned, but highly underrated; don’t laugh–it’s a very accurate portrayal of what happened to Navy diver Robert Stethem on TWA 847 at the hands of Hezbollah and the way we should have dealt with it, instead of running out of Lebanon)

Here’s Jaz McKay’s list (he’s different, so he did it in descending order):

10) Red Dawn
9) True Grit
8) How the West was Won
7) We Were Soldiers…
6) Remember the Titans
5) Patton
4) Rocky
3) The Passion of the Christ
2) The Patriot
1) The Pursuit of Happyness

What movies would you pick or add to our lists?

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19 Responses

I’m a old movie nerd. I can not live without To Kill a Mockingbird.

MarySJ on June 21, 2007 at 3:03 pm

(1) Casablanca
(2) Band of Brothers

Happiness Pursuer on June 21, 2007 at 3:51 pm

No disrespect to Miracle, a fine film, the best American sports film is still Hoosiers in my opinion.

AlternativeThought on June 21, 2007 at 4:08 pm

High Noon, The Natural, American Graffitti, Mr. Roberts, E.T., To Hell and Back, and just about any Steve McQueen movie (the anti girlie man).

Ripper on June 21, 2007 at 4:13 pm

In terms of having foreigners see us the way characters are portrayed in movies, then I humbly submit my list: Rocky, Red Dawn, The Right Stuff, Pursuit of Happyness, Hoosiers, Miracle, Die Hard, Air Force One, Any Given Sunday, Sudden Impact, Saving Private Ryan. I hesitate to add Casino, though I admit I’d love for some of them across the oceans to think of us as real bada%$ take-no-bull types again.

chris4316 on June 21, 2007 at 4:57 pm

Dubbing of movies should be outlawed internationally! I once tried to watch “Terminator” dubbed in Italian and couldn’t last more ten 3 minutes. It was awful and hillarious at the same time.

Witch-king of Angmar on June 21, 2007 at 5:02 pm

Sands of Iwo Jima
Flying Leathernecks
True Grit
The Longest Day
Band of Brothers
Tora, Tora, Tora
Bullitt
Guns of Navarone
Cool Hand Luke
Gumball Rally

Grinchnet on June 21, 2007 at 5:33 pm

My choices would be: Sergeant York,Yankee Doodle Dandy,The Fighting 69th,Great Guy,Mr.Smith Goes to Washington,Die Hard,Boom Town,Red Dawn,She Wore A Yellow Ribbon and finally The Longest Day

California Tammy on June 21, 2007 at 5:43 pm

Sargent York
The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence
True Grit
El Dorado (gotta love The Duke)
The Patriot
Saving Private Ryan
The Wizard Of Oz (There’s no place like home in America)
Silverado (despite comrade Glover)
Slapshot (You idiots around the world need a good laugh)
Lots of others….

Southernops on June 21, 2007 at 5:54 pm

Great lists, but once they see them, won’t they all want to come live here? Already having a dickens of time keeping the back door locked. Anyway, Patton, Saving Private Ryan, The Right Stuff, Open Range, The Outlaw Josey Wales, Casablanca, Tom Horn, The Natural, The Patriot, We Were Soldiers, The Searchers, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance.

jeebie on June 21, 2007 at 6:01 pm

My choices(not in order):
The Longest Day
Popeye
Saving Private Ryan
Miracle on 34th Street
Holiday Inn
Casablanca
The Green Berets
Run Silent Run Deep
Enemy Below
Patton
To Kill A Mockingbird

WillPower on June 21, 2007 at 6:53 pm

It’s a Wonderful Life
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
The Wizard of Oz
Forest Gump

CarpeDiem on June 21, 2007 at 6:54 pm

How about also:
The Untouchables
Groundhog Day
Pride of the Yankees
Bull Durham (even though it has Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins)
Wall Street (even though it’s an Oliver Stone flick with Charlie Sheen)
Back to the Future
Raiders of the Lost Ark (even though it’s a Spielberg movie)
Swiss Family Robinson

sonomaca on June 21, 2007 at 6:58 pm

Schindler’s List
The Pianist
Life is Beautiful
Fiddler on the Roof
The Jazz Singer
Yentl
Borat
Breaking Away
Debbie, close your eyes for a second…OK.
American Jewess: Please describe yourself, and feel free to include some objective descriptors.
Thanks.

Anonymous1 on June 21, 2007 at 11:53 pm

1) To Hell and Back
2) Patton
3) Judgement at Nuremberg
4) No Name on the Bullet
5) The Right Stuff
6) Jaws
7) The Searchers
8) The Astronaut Farmer
9) Touch of Evil
10) Saving Private Ryan

Freudianslippers on June 22, 2007 at 12:19 am

11) Rear Window
12) The Birds
13) Vertigo

Freudianslippers on June 22, 2007 at 12:46 am

Don’t forget Apollo 13.

aunursa on June 25, 2007 at 2:33 am

You lost me at ‘tax dollars.’
I would however support having our embassies provide assistance to an American company that would provide access to American films on either VHS or CD.
If Blockbuster, or some similar outfit, wanted to set up shop in a foreign country then our embassies should help them do so.
I am not interested in having our embassies becoming ‘bodegas’ for the local populace. They have more important functions to perform.

zyzzyg on June 25, 2007 at 10:30 am

The prevalence of cardiac valvular insufficiency assessed by transthoracic echocardiography in obese patients treated with appetite-suppressant drugs. ,

xbvcznm on June 3, 2011 at 8:07 pm

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