Today's Special: For Mother's Day, Our Moms' Favorite Movies. Yours?

With Mother’s Day coming on Sunday (for our U.S. readers), we wanted to celebrate movies that mothers love, but not just our idea of what they love. That’s right, the staff of Disc Dish gave their mothers a job to celebrate the holiday where their kids are supposed to do all the work! We asked our moms what their favorite films  are — and the results were fun, varied and even a bit provocative! See for yourself below.

And if you’re a mom, we want to know yours’ too. Tell us what your favorite movies are and why.

Today, as on every day, we thank our mothers for their enthusiasm, encouragement and awesome taste in movies!

Selma Chopinsky, mother of Irv Slifkin

Goldfinger (1964)
The third James Bond adventure is the one many claim is the best. It certainly has all the 007 elements going for it, from memorable diabolical villains to cool cars to sexy women and exciting action. And then there’s Connery … Sean Connery. Mom relates: “Sean Connery was James Bond to me. Handsome, witty and dangerous at the same time. This is my favorite of the series.”

Goldfinger movie scene

Goldfinger (1964)

The Odd Couple (1968)
Neil Simon’s play, which later became a long-running TV series, is hilariously brought to the screen with Jack Lemmon as fussy Felix and Walter Matthau as sloppy Oscar, the apartment-sharing divorcees. Says Mom: “I love just about everything Jack and Walter did together, including The Fortune Cookie and Grumpy Old Men, but this is still their best. It also has a great New York feel.”

Dirty Harry (1971)
Clint Eastwood is the San Francisco detective who plays by his own rules when the system betrays him in Don Siegel’s exciting and controversial cop movie. “Clint Eastwood is great in almost everything, but this is the movie I always think of when his name is mentioned. The other Dirty Harry movies were good, but this one is a classic. The bad guy is scary, too. ”

Barbara Cooper, mother of Gwen Cooper

Once Upon a Honeymoon movie scene

Once Upon a Honeymoon (1942)

Once upon a Honeymoon (1942)
“Cary Grant is a news reporter and Ginger Rogers is a stripteaser in this World War II comedy-romance, which gets dark during a couple of scenes. I watch it over and over again whenever it’s on.”

Edge of Darkness (1943)
“One of my all-time favorites is this World War II drama. I love the Errol Flynn, the story line and the gutsiness of the village people in Norway who take on the Nazis.”

The Ritz (1976)
“This one is hysterical. I loved Jack Weston and Jerry Stiller and Rita Moreno as a low-class trashy entertainer. First I had it on VHS and now I have it on DVD.”

FayAnne de Freitas, mother of Samantha Clark

Doctor Zhivago (1965)
My mom’s favorite film is David Lean’s five-time Oscar-winning classic starring Omar Sharif and Julie Christie. “It’s got everything, romance, history, adventure. And it’s very well made for its time.”

The Lord of the Rings Fellowship of the Ring movie scene

The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001)

Notting Hill (1999)
No. 2 on Mom’s list if this romantic comedy starring Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts. “It’s a just-for-fun movie I can just sit and watch and not worry about anything.” I couldn’t agree more.

The Lord of the Rings Trilogy (2001-2002)
I was surprised by Mom’s inclusion of Peter Jackson’s awesome film series, which is one of my favorites but I’m a fantasy geek and Mom isnt’. But she said, “I read the books when I was 19 in hospital, and it was great to see the characters come alive.” Absolutely.

Hannah Frisch, mother of Gary Frisch

The Way We Were movie scene

The Way We Were (1973)

The Way We Were (1973)
“I’ve always enjoyed stories where the not-so-popular underdog ends up getting the man. I find this movie very touching and romantic. It’s both funny and sad at times. I never get tired of watching it.”

Pretty Woman (1990)
“Very romantic and very funny. It’s a pleasure to watch Julia Roberts and Richard Gere. The happy ending adds to my enjoyment.”

Dirty Dancing (1987)
“It appeals to me for many reasons. It takes place in the Catskill Mountains where I spent quite a few holidays and weekends growing up, so I can identify with some of the situations. It has the romance and humor which I like and the added element of great music and dancing. Lots of fun to watch.”

Grace Grant, mother of Ed Grant

Mother Wore Tights movie scene

Mother Wore Tights (1947)

Little Women (1949)
“I read the novel when I was young and was thrilled when they made a film out of it with all my favorite stars. I’ve watched this version dozens of times since, and it always touches my heart.”

Mother Wore Tights (1947)
“It’s been my ‘Mother Day movie’ since I received it as a gift one year. The story is delightful, the songs are memorable, and it completely entertains me.”

The Verdict (1982)
“Paul Newman was at his best here and deserved the Academy Award for his performance. It’s an intense movie, and I love the ending.”

Joan Koseluk, mother of Chris Koseluk

Gone with the Wind movie scene

Gone with the Wind (1939)

The Sound of Music (1965)
When the von Trapp family first came to America, my Mom and her mother went to see them perform at Westbury High School on Long Island. She also saw the original Broadway production near the end of its run. She loves the music and, even though she no longer has a record player, she kept the LP of the film’s soundtrack until last year when she gave it to me.

Gone With the Wind (1939)
When I asked Mom what she liked about it, she said, “Everything… the story, the costumes, of course Vivian Leigh was fantastic.  And I always liked Clark Gable.”

Yankee Doodle Dandy (1942)
Mom then mentioned James Cagney and Humphrey Bogart … and how much she always enjoyed any movie that had them in it.  This led to her naming this one as her third favorite. “When he played George M. Cohan,” she said,  “I just loved the way Cagney danced in that movie.”

Saundra Lerman, mother of Laurence Lerman

Now, Voyager movie scene

Now, Voyager (1942)

Now, Voyager (1942)
“When Paul Heinreid lights cigarettes for himself and Bette Davis and she looks into his eyes and says to him, ‘Don’t let’s ask for the moon, we have the stars.’ Such a romantic ending!”

Casablanca (1942)
“I love the stars, the story, the music — the whole thing. I could watch it a hundred times, and that’s after having seen it a hundred times already. And the dialogue! ‘You played it for him, you can play it for me!’ God, I love it.”

Two for the Road (1967)
“Such a fantastic movie about love and marriage. The way that Albert Finney and Audrey Hepburn look at each other as all the years go by. And it holds up beautifully today, too.”

From Catherine Leopold, mother of David Leopold

Ivanhoe (1952)
A Lutheran who married a Jew, my mother liked to quote MGM’s Ivanhoe. As Rebecca the Jewess, Elizabeth Taylor (at her most gorgeous — violet eyes in glorious Technicolor) is asked, “To whom does a Jew pray for a Christian?” Intones La Liz: “To the same God who made them both.”

Ivanhoe movie scene

Ivanhoe (1952)

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (1945)
When I was just old enough to stay up and watch the late movie, my mother and I watched this Elia Kazan classic. Neither of us could hold back the tears at the heartbreaking, Oscar-winning performances of James Dunn (Supporting Actor) and Peggy Ann Garner (Special Children’s Award).

Star! (1968)
A diehard Julie Andrews fan, my mother said this mega-bomb in its initial road show release. When the studio tried to recoup by re-editing and re-releasing it as Those Were the Happy Times, she went to see it again. You’re welcome, Dame Julie.

Barbara McClain, mother of Buzz McClain

The Bridges of Madison County (1995)
This one came to my Mom right away as an all-time favorite. Clint Eastwood woos Meryl Streep in this classic romance. “It’s a good love story, with broken hearts and I just cried and cried.”

Breakfast at Tiffany's movie scene

Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961)

Something’s Gotta Give (2003)
Swinger Jack Nicholson meets his match – and she’s his age – in Diane Keaton. “It’s so funny, and any single woman my age has gone through what she goes through, and I laughed my head off all the way through.”

Breakfast At Tiffany’s (1961)
“I saw it on TV, not in the theaters. The whole thing is awesome and I love Audrey Hepburn. It’s a great story. I’ve seen it I don’t know how many times.”

These are the favorite movies of our moms, and a lot of them wouldn’t make the usual Mother’s Day list.

Now tell us, all you moms, what are your favorite films? Any that would surprise us?

Happy Mother’s Day!!!

About Laurence

Founder and editor Laurence Lerman saw Alfred Hitchcock’s North by Northwest when he was 13 years old and that’s all it took. He has been writing about film and video for more than a quarter of a century for magazines, anthologies, websites and most recently, Video Business magazine, where he served as the Reviews Editor for 15 years.