This year, film classics Jurassic Park, The Shining, Brokeback Mountain, and many others have been added to the National Film Registry. In its annual induction of 25 films deemed culturally and historically significant enough to make the cut, the Library of Congress has elected to preserve these and other classics in its collection. These films join a curated collection of almost 500 other preserved works. Other notable titles the National Film Registry has added to its ranks over the past three decades include the original versions of Star Wars, War of the Worlds, Scarface, The Manchurian Candidate, and The Wizard of Oz, as well as such film history titans as Citizen Kane, Gone with the Wind, The Grapes of Wrath, Rosemary's Baby, and Casablanca.
The National Film Registry was established in 1988 and is maintained by the nonprofit National Film Preservation Board. Its mission is to preserve American film history, making it is an immense honor for filmmakers to have their works immortalized in the hallowed list.
The 2018 inductees to the National Film Registry include a number of modern films, such as Steven Spielberg’s Jurassic Park, Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining, and Ang Lee’s Brokeback Mountain. Also chosen were works that span over a century film history, ranging from 1997’s Eve’s Bayou all the way back to 1898’s Something Good - Negro Kiss. The full list (in alphabetical order) is: Bad Day at Black Rock (1955), Broadcast News (1987), Brokeback Mountain (2005), Cinderella (1950), Days of Wine and Roses (1962), Dixon-Wanamaker Expedition to Crow Agency (1908), Eve’s Bayou (1997), The Girl Without a Soul (1917), Hair Piece: A Film for Nappy-Headed People (1984), Hearts and Minds (1974), Hud (1963), The Informer (1935), Jurassic Park (1993), The Lady From Shanghai (1947), Leave Her to Heaven (1945), Monterey Pop (1968), My Fair Lady (1964), The Navigator (1924), On the Town (1949), One-Eyed Jacks (1961), Pickup on South Street (1953), Rebecca (1940), The Shining (1980), Smoke Signals (1998), Something Good – Negro Kiss (1898).
This is neither Spielberg’s nor Kubrick’s first films to appear on the registry; last year, Kubrick’s Spartacus joined his 1991 selection 2001: A Space Odyssey on the list, while a whopping five Spielberg-directed titles have been chosen by the National Film Preservation Board since E.T. the Extraterrestrial was inducted in 1994. Meanwhile, this is Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon director Lee’s National Film Registry debut, and his Brokeback Mountain joins Wayne Wang’s Chan is Missing as one of the registry’s only films directed by Asian Americans.
This follows the National Film Registry’s increasing trend of diversity not only in terms of its films’ genre, style, and theme, but in terms of directorial representation. Other directors included in the 2018 inductee list are African American women Kasi Lemmons (Eve’s Bayou) and Ayoka Chenzira (Hair Piece: A Film for Nappy Headed People) and Native American Chris Eyre (Smoke Signals). It’s uncertain whether or not this trend will continue or reverse when 2019’s registry inductees are announced, but until then film buffs have a solid and varied list of 25 American classics to marathon.
Source: National Film Registry